By definition and experience, most salespeople are average.  

Salespeople are average, not by genetics or design, but by nature.  They are lazy, lack adventure and are most comfortable “blending in” without making waves or bringing attention to themselves.  Most salespeople have no idea what they are capable of achieving and therefore, find far less success in their careers than they are capable of achieving. Salespeople often go through life reacting to their circumstances instead of taking a proactive approach to achieve the circumstances they want.  Many salespeople are passive because they don’t understand they have the right to choose for themselves what they want in life.  They lack vision beyond their own situation.

In order to reach beyond your current condition, you must believe there is something better and you must have a burning desire to achieve it.  It doesn’t matter what “IT” is, so long as it is beyond your current circumstances.  The human spirit grows by reaching beyond your current situation.  Believing there is something more in life and being willing to take the efforts to achieve it, are essential to discovering your true potential.  A great journey begins with the first step.  Once you believe, you must take action.  When you take action, you are moving outside of your comfort zone and possibly for the first time in your life, you will experience the exhilarating feeling of achieving something new, different, exciting and rewarding.

My father was a great role model.  He not only led by example, but challenged me to dream and reach beyond my own experience and circumstance.  He believed in me and encouraged me constantly to reach for the stars.  I believed him when he said, “There is nothing in life you can’t achieve if you want it badly enough and are willing to spend the time and effort necessary to achieve it.”  So, what do you want to achieve as a salesperson, and what actions are you willing to take to achieve it?  Determining what you want in life is paramount to achieving it.  Overcoming mediocrity begins with setting goals.  Here are ten steps of goal setting that will allow you to achieve your dreams, reach beyond your current situation and fulfill your true destiny.

Step #1:  Choose goals that excite you.  Nothing is so motivating as a goal that unleashes passion.  Too often salespeople take a passive approach to goal setting and find themselves pursuing goals they don’t really care about.  Once you have selected your goal, find a picture that represents the achievement of your goal and look at it daily. We are all visual and nothing is as convincing as a picture.  Psychologists tell us a picture is worth a thousand words.  

Step #2:  Determine if the goal you have selected is one of value to you and your personal success.  Review the positive aspects of achieving your goal and evaluate the negative aspects of reaching your goal.  Then take the opposite view and review the positive aspects of not pursuing that goal and then evaluate the negative aspects of not achieving the goal.  You want to make sure the goal has value before you commit time and effort towards its achievement.

Step #3:  Once you have determined the goal is in harmony with your objectives and you are committed to the time and effort to achieve it, write a positive, present tense affirmation relating to the achievement of the goal.  Write down the names of those people who inspire you and would be proud of your achievement.  Write down the names of a few people who might not believe you could reach your goal and focus on proving them wrong.  Finally, tell those who you are close to about your goal and give them periodic updates on your progress.

Step #4:  Without a time frame for completion, a goal is just a wish.  Determine a realistic completion date and work towards completing the goal by that date.  Remember, Someday is not a real day.  Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc, but never Someday.  Someday is another word for never.

Step #5:  Goals must be achievable, realistic and challenging.  It is far better to aim a little bit lower and achieve the goal, than to aim too high and fall short, even if in both cases the same result is achieved.  In the first case you were successful.  In the latter, you failed even though the results were the same.  Don’t program your mind for failure.  Once the goal has been achieved, set a super goal.  A super goal represents that “little bit more” you can achieve after having reached your goal.

Step #6:  Lack of determining the steps necessary to achieve a goal is the major reason for failure.  You have heard that the way you eat an elephant is one bite at a time.  The same is true with achieving goals.  Once you have determined your goal, break it into small steps.  Give each step a time frame and then move forward one step at a time until you achieve your goal.

Step #7:  Just because you have set a goal doesn’t mean you are capable of achieving it without the proper training or education.  Make learning and training part of the goal achievement process.  Consult those who have previously accomplished your goal or something similar.  Take advantage of the knowledge and wisdom of others to achieve your goals.

Step #8:  Plan time each day for the achievement of your goals.  Too often people become so focused on the day-to-day urgencies associated with their employment that they forget to plan time to accomplish the specific steps of their goals.  Without proper daily planning you will never find the time to reach your goals.

Step #9:  Create a structure of accountability relating to your goal.  It is not good enough to just be accountable to yourself.  Involve family, friends, co-workers and anyone else you feel comfortable with in the steps and achievement of your goals.  You will find strength and courage when you involve others.  A definition of courage is “Doing what you say you will do even when the emotions of the moment are past.”

Step #10:  Goals are achieved mentally before they are ever achieved physically.  The world of sports is a very good analogy for winning first in your mind and then on the field of play.  Envision yourself achieving your goal and then your physical actions will follow.  In his book, The Law of Success, Napoleon Hill describes the insight he gained from his research into the power of goal setting.  He said, “Any definite chief aim that is deliberately fixed in the mind and held there with determination to realize it, finally saturates the entire subconscious mind until it automatically influences the physical action of the body toward the attainment of the purpose.”