How businesses can beat the January lull
Tis the season for the sale slump, or is it? Salespeople who diligently focus on prospecting during the holidays will have a much better first quarter of 2014 that sets them up for a significantly successful year, more than those salespeople who hide behind the holidays.
The best way to overcome the January lull in sales is to be strategically proactive in December.
There is no reason for anyone in sales to be ho-hum in January. In fact, if someone experiences a lull in sales in January, they need to look within themselves and take responsibility immediately. It is unnecessary to start a new year in a slump. There is no scarcity of opportunity. There is no scarcity of prospects. Salespeople need to be strategic; get a structure in place that works for them and then take action.
Read related articles in Business Review Canada
- How to make the right business decisions
- The best Canadian companies to work for in 2013
- The pros and cons of allowing employees to work from home
Many salespeople take a mental vacation from Thanksgiving to the Monday after New Year’s Day. That equates to well over a month! Here are the most common excuses:
- “Our prospects are too busy with their holiday plans. They are not in the buying mode.”
- “It’s holiday time. Our prospects are too busy with shopping, parties and holiday plans.”
- “Prospects are distracted by all the holiday events to seriously consider buying decisions.”
- “Prospects don’t want to meet with salespeople over the holidays.”
However, there are salespeople who see the holidays as the best time of year to prospect. They are strategizing their prospecting. They are planning on attending events with a keen ear to opportunities in addition to celebrating this time of year. They are planning on sharing their achievements which will increase their credibility with people they are in conversation with. This is an exceptional time of year to ask people, “What has the highlight of 2013 been for your business?” This leads to delicious business conversation. If the person is half-way savvy, they will in-turn ask the salesperson the same question. What a great opportunity to strategically promote yourself.
Top salespeople believe that due to the holidays, many decision makers are in their offices planning for 2014. They believe that decision makers have some strategic decisions to make between now and the end of the year.
Now is the time to implement at least five proactive prospecting conversations every business day during the holidays. Setting that intention affects your business in a very deep way that is setting you up for a bright future. Focus on the fact that whatever you are doing proactively today, you are creating in your future.
Whatever you believe, you will create situations to validate your beliefs. If you believe that prospects are unwilling to engage with salespeople during the holidays, guess what? You will create situations to validate your belief. Your belief will be true for you.
The four energy blocks that keep salespeople from achieving their goals are: limited beliefs, assumptions, perceptions/interpretations and their inner critic who sits on their shoulder and whispers negative intruding thoughts in their ear. The good news is that you can identify your energy blocks and find a solution to transform each one of them.
The perspective that prospects are too busy with their holiday plans to engage with salespeople can become your reality.
Let’s explore and challenge that perspective:
- Prospects are in their offices and not traveling as much, this is the perfect time of year to pop in and introduce myself.
- Prospects are making plans for 2014 and my product/service is something that they need to know about now.
- This is an exceptional time of year to stay visible with prospects. I’ll drop by their office with an appropriate gift and will ask if they are in.
- Prospects are more open at this time of year to go out to lunch and spend a few extra minutes. I’ll call and invite them to lunch.
- Most people are in a good mood during the holidays and they are more open to engage with salespeople.
Now choose which perspective you want to, circle it and say: “I choose that one.” Then get moving!
Focus is absolutely vital. Clarity is power. When you focus on your new business development plans and then get your ‘ask’ in gear you will be sure to ‘receive.’ This is a mindset that will serve you well.
What would it be like to stay proactive in December and experience significant business results in January? That question is a profound question that will rewire your brain if you allow yourself to ponder on the answer. It will interrupt the negative pessimistic perspectives and take your brain and creativity to a place it’s never been before.
In our culture, we have been raised to believe that we must see it before we’ll ever experience it. However, science has proven that we have to believe it before we’ll ever see it.
Get busy now with your strategy. If you are stuck and lacking creativity, engage a coach to help you.
The greatest leaders of all walks of life see everything as an opportunity. They are calm, powerful, entrepreneurial-minded, confident and are in control of their lives and they realize they choose their life experience.
Have fun this holiday season and smile all the way to the bank in January 2014.
About the author
Connie Kadansky is a certified coach, professional speaker, and trainer specializing in Overcoming Sales Call Reluctance®. She offers effective tools and training to diagnose Sales Call Reluctance and assists salespeople and financial advisors in highly profitable prospecting. Connie facilitates the Fear-Free Prospecting and Self Promotion Workshops® in the United States and Canada. For additional information, contact Connie at (602) 997-1101 or email her at [email protected].