Why you Should Always be Selling

Why you Should Always be Selling

September 23, 2011 - 1:21 PM

I started in this industry in 1999 as an internal agent for Network FOB.   I have personally made thousands upon thousands of cold calls over the years and my agents have made many more. I would like to tell you I have the magic formula for generating a book business, but I don't. What can tell you is that I have spent years trying out different techniques and ideas, some have worked while others have been large failures.

In the beginning of my career I loathed making sales calls.  When business was down I started a process called a "sales push." The idea was simple enough. Locate a list of leads and dedicate short term effort to opening some of those leads. When time permitted I would work the phones and try to drum up business. I didn’t like making calls, the rejection is tough to handle. One bad call can crumple your confidence. When I finally woke up from my mini-depression I would realize I'd wasted my day on the internet.

I justified the sales effort as only temporary. It would soon be over.  Looking back I was trying to convince myself to make sales calls when I was at my lowest confidence. Truth be told when my business was down I was too. I often spent about a week getting used the idea of selling and more often than not that week turned into two or three. When I finally would get started, I would often have a momentary influx of business and I would stop selling  and tell myself things had turned around. A couple days later I was back where I started, getting used to the idea of selling again. 

Sometime around 2007 I started to rethink about my sales process. In the prior five years my business went up and down. I managed to painfully build it back up every time. I was tired of rebuilding my book and I knew that thinking month to month was not going to cut it anymore. I knew that I needed to change my perception of sales calls. I needed to accept that selling should be part of my daily routine and not a lackluster effort when required. I started compiling small batches of leads and working those leads on a daily basis. The call count was manageable and there was never a operation reason that I should not be making those calls. My petty excuses on why I could not sell today were eliminated.

Accepting this was difficult but in the end I'm glad I did. I had to accept that my lack of effort was the reason I wasn't growing. What was a small book of business is now a large book. Sure there are still ups and downs, but my client base is now more diverse. That diversity has lead to some exceptional months of production. My sales effort is ongoing and I never stop selling.

There has never been a shortcut for hard work. Bite the bullet and commit — in the end you'll be happy that you did. 

Response to Why you Should Always be Selling

  • Steve said on December 7, 2011 - 4:41 AM

    Hi Brad, Very nice piece - very sincere. Your quote with the day gone - excuse making - computer - mini depression . . Wouldn't it be great for others to admit that, and show - like you that that is normal? Maybe one wouldn't feel so bad, and get productive sooner! Your words were very encouraging - Thanks!

  • Mike M. said on January 24, 2012 - 9:07 AM

    Thank you for the sincerity. This piece really helped me deal with the rejection you will encounter in this business. Being completely new in this,I am now learning the process thru online training from someone who assures me they will be there with me every step of the way except for finding my own leads. All the other clerical part so to speak seems easier than cold-calling to me,but only because of the fears of rejections and the fear of not becoming a good service provider. I am biting the bullet as you recommend,and now continue to go for it. Thanks. Mike

  • Brad E said on January 27, 2012 - 9:40 AM

    Mike, I did not learn from an online course and much of expertise was gained from my peers. As we all do each of them had their strengths and weaknesses. I tried to take the best from everyone. In sales you need to be a little bit of chameleon so to speak. You must adapt your approach to many different personalities. The operations aspect of the job may seem easy but it takes a special person to produce a high level. I wish you the best of luck!

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