In Sales, It’s OK to Move the Finish Line
OK—Owners, CEOs and money types, I need you to earmuff it right now. You won’t like what you read here, and I don’t need any more enemies…
So all the rest of you, here goes...I don’t know if you guys know this about me, but I read a lot. And I like to use a site called Goodreads to track my books, see what my friends are reading, and read reviews. They also have a yearly reading challenge, in which you set a goal for the number of books you want to read, and it tracks it for you and tells you where you are in the process. Last year, somehow I read 50 books, so I set my goal for the same number this year.
And, go figure, I fell behind, right away. And I never caught up. And this started to make me mad. And I started to feel bad about it.
I know, this sounds silly, and has nothing to do with anyone’s REAL problems or issues. But here is what I did.
I lowered my goal to something that was more realistic given the current demands on my time and how much free time I was able to devote to reading. And you know what? I started to feel better THE MOMENT THAT I DID IT.
Here is my point. When you sat down last year to set your goal for 2014, whether you did it alone, with the owner of your company, or whether that goal was set for you, things might look different today at the end of August than they did back then. And, if you are not hitting your number, despite your best efforts—and by that I mean that you are BUSTING YOUR ASS every day to make it happen—I am hereby giving you permission to re-adjust your target.
Because here is the thing. When you sit down every month and review your numbers, and that chasm keeps getting bigger, not only do you feel bad about it, it will start to lose its’ meaning. And then it just starts to seem normal that you are not succeeding.
So it’s OK to move your finish line this year, if you have done everything in your power to succeed, and it’s still not happening. And if your boss gets wind of it, tell him or her to call me. I’ve got your back.
Blogger, author, consultant, coach and all around evangelist for the graphic arts industry, Kelly sold digital printing for 15 years so she understands the challenges, frustrations and pitfalls of building a successful sales practice. Her mission is to help printers of all sizes sell more stuff. Kelly's areas of focus include sales and marketing coaching, enabling clients to find engagement strategies that work for them and mentoring the next generation of sales superstars.
Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and, among other notable accomplishments, co-founded the Windy City Rollers, a professional women's roller derby league. She is also the mother of two sets of twins under the age of ten, so she fears nothing.