DISCIPLINE YOURSELF TO SALES SUCCESS
by Joe Bonura, CSP
WHAT'S THE WORD?
Recently, when I opened one of my training sessions, I asked the
question, 'Can you give me a word that will enable you to out-think,
out-perform, out-sell, and out-service your competition?' There
were fifty people in the group, and no one knew the answer. I was
intrigued that no one knew, so I did the same exercise in my next
four sessions. Still no one could come up with the correct word.
I had them divide into groups of five, and still, no success.
THE WORD IS
The word is DISCIPLINE.
Webster Had It Right
Looking in the Merriam-Webster dictionary, I found two definitions
1. Control gained by obedience or training
The second definition may be why many do not practice the first.
We feel that we are being punished when we discipline ourselves
to do the thing required.
The word 'control' gives you the benefit of practicing discipline.
If you practice discipline, you will have control over your circumstances,
and your lives will be more orderly and successful.
In selling, more than any other profession, discipline is required.
Most salespeople are their own bosses - even if they work for someone
else. Training allows a salesperson to know the rules and procedures,
and discipline keeps the salesperson within bounds. Knowing the
rules enables them to stay on the path that leads to success.
START WITH THE BENEFITS
Look at the benefits of practicing discipline:
1. There is satisfaction in doing something worthwhile.
2. Boundaries make a basketball game fun to watch. Without boundaries,
the game would be nothing but chaos.
3. You derive peace of mind because you are doing the right thing
4. Discipline makes your clients happy because they know what to
expect, and they get what they expect.
5. Short and long-term success comes from performing tasks correctly.
LISTEN TO POGO
'You have met the enemy, and he is YOU.' Many would like to see
changes, but they are not willing to change the culprit - themselves.
Practicing discipline is the key that unlocks the door to accomplishment.
Vince Lombardi once said, 'The good Lord gave you a body that can
stand most anything; its your mind you have to convince.'
MOVE OVER ENRON
Would you fly in a plane piloted by an undisciplined pilot, or
would you have surgery performed by an undisciplined surgeon? How
about turning your stock portfolio over to the head of Enron or
SUBMISSION TO THE MISSION
How can you make discipline work for you, instead of against you?
Learn to develop your mental sharpness, moral compass, and physical
bodies to be your servants, not your masters. You will force them
into submission by discipline.
WHAT TURNS YOU ON?
How important is it for you to become a disciplined person? If
you dont consider something important, the odds are that you
will not be motivated to perform the task. How would your life be
different today if you had always had discipline in your life?
Remember, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Touch a hot stove, and you will remove your hand quickly. Drop a
marble, and it will head for the ground. Stop paying attention to
the road while you are driving, and you may end up wrapped around
In selling, it is a choice of disciplining yourself to make, or
not make, calls. Make the calls, play the numbers, and you will
reap the reaction you are seeking.
ARE YOU LOST OR DISORIENTED?
Pick a destination. Whenever my wife and I discuss going on a road
trip, we head to the bookstore to purchase a road map and travel
brochures. The map will give us direction, and the brochures will
provide visual hopes. Define what success is to you. What are your
career goals, and how will discipline help you to reach them? Determining
those answers will enable you to visualize success and to give you
a target to aim for. You will become more disciplined in your sales
career, and it is your career that will pay the bills.
THERE IS GOLD IN THEM THAR HILLS
Prospectors in the Old West disciplined themselves to pan for gold
to get rich, not because they liked panning for gold. In his book
'Alaska,' James Mischner gave a vivid picture of the hardships that
gold seekers experienced on their way to perceived wealth. The undisciplined
died a quick and unmerciful death. What is the pot of gold waiting
for you at the end of the rainbow? How much discipline is required
of you to reach your treasure?
CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN - MAYBE NOT
Although there will be setbacks, the truly disciplined person views
a setback as an opportunity. As Dr. Robert Schuler says, 'When faced
with a mountain, I will not quit. I will find a way to go around
it, climb over it, or tunnel underneath.' It takes discipline to
make the journey around the mountain - it takes discipline to climb
over the mountain - it takes discipline to tunnel underneath the
mountain. What mountains have you been avoiding? How has it hindered
your career? Perhaps, you need the discipline to read more books
on selling or to make more cold calls?
DO NOT GET WINDED IN THE WINDY CITY
A few years ago, my daughter ran the Chicago Marathon. It took
the discipline of months of training to run that race. My wife and
I rushed from check-point to check-point to cheer for her and to
encourage her. Each time that she passed a check-point, she had
a confident smile on her face, until we saw her at the 23-mile marker.
At that point, she had the serious look of a runner who had disciplined
herself to finish the race. To us, it was three more miles to go,
but to her, it was the culmination of months of disciplined training.
She finished the race because she paid the price 'to gain control
by disciplined training' - there goes Webster again!
Are you willing to pay now, or to pay later?
© 2004 Joe Bonura & Associates, Inc.