Thursday, December 25, 2008

Managing Your Mindset. Your #1 Challenge in 2009

Woody Allen said “80 percent of success is showing up.”
Thinking about it, this is very practical advice, and for people in sales a good rule to live by. You can’t influence, persuade, or sell yourself or your ideas if you aren’t sitting in front of the person you need to influence. Now ask yourself this.

How often have you chosen to simply send an email or make a phone call rather than holding to a face-to-face meeting?

Essentially you are choosing between sending your message vs personally delivering your message. Using email and the phone is easier for sure. However, it is also easier for the other person to choose to ignore, misunderstand or fail to take the desired action in response to your message. Less investment in time and effort equates to less commitment to influence. So, showing up wins? Yes, no contest. But, I think that there is a critical and unstated assumption here. Let me explain. Showing up, how and in what state of mind? Showing up when you are unprepared, uncommitted, de-motivated, tired, or sick means that we may have been better off sending an email or making a phone call. Showing up when you are well prepared: having a plan, being fully committed and having a positive mental attitude is what will deliver success.

Maintaining a Positive Mindset
“Your altitude is determined by your attitude.” If you don’t think for yourself, someone else will do it for you. You must manage your mindset so that you can manage their mindset. How do you maintain a positive mindset or a positive mental attitude? Well, it starts with having a clear end game in mind, to know where you are going. To have clearly defined desired outcomes. “Visualizing something organizes one’s ability to accomplish it.” says Stephen Covey. It brings a sense of clarity and a sense of purpose to everything we do. Mental creation proceeds physical creation. Attitude equals thinking win-win and attitude is everything.
Keep your attitude in check by reminding yourself of the desired thinking, behaviors and beliefs that you want to reinforce using attitude affirmations like these:
· I will think of myself as Successful!
· I will have positive expectations for everything I do!
· I will remind myself of past successes!
· I will not dwell on failures, I just will not repeat them!
· I will surround myself with positive people and ideas!
· I will keep trying until I achieve the results I want!

Maintaining a Positive Message
The words you use and the way you deliver them is what determines your ability to get your message across and make it memorable. Words and how we use them are like a paint brush and a canvas in the hands of an artist. You are creating a master piece, a spoken master piece; you are using your words to paint a beautiful picture of your vision in the mind of the people you are meeting. Words work best when they are conveyed with e-motion (energy in motion). Emotion is what speaks to people’s hearts and minds. Emotion is what moves people to action. Emotion is what makes messages memorable and what creates lasting impact.
Maintaining Positive Momentum
“Plans are useless, but planning in indispensible.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
Before the meeting replay in your mind your previous successes and big wins. Think of all the possible positive outcomes that exist. Then lay them out in front of your audience. Show them how you can help them bring positive change to the organization and the people you are meeting. Create the positive future that you desire by moving their hearts and minds and focusing their thinking on the next step; the decision to take action. The best and simplest way to do this is to ask the following question. “Where do we go from here….?” Then describe the 3 scenarios, alternative solutions or courses of action that you would recommend. “From what we have discussed together today the 3 possible courses of action that I see are…….” Then help them chose the best possible solution for their situation. Concur, confirm and validate. Agree with their decision and point out all its advantages. Then openly accept responsibility for making it happen by owning their decision. “Based on our discussion we agree that the best course of action is …………. because it delivers the highest level of new customer trails and maximizes the try-to-buy conversion rate by ensuring the best overall user experience for 1st time users. I am committed to working with you and your team to make this happen over the next 90 days.” Sale made!

Three Golden Rules for Managing their Mindset:
1. Always make the effort to meet with people in person face to face. The sale starts when you see eye to eye.
2. Be prepared. Plan out the objectives of your meeting and anticipate different outcome scenarios.
3. Check that you have a positive mental attitude by holding in your mind at all times a clear vision of your desired outcome(s).

Then as Woody Allen says 80 percent of success is showing up.