The Facts, what you do in a Sales profession is not easy
We will outline some tasks and responsibilities that Sales professionals have to do in their career, along with some information about what you do in your job and some of the significant challenges you face daily. Also outline and discuss some solutions that might help you reduce your job difficulties and work-related stress.
Suppose you embark on a sales professional or are already in sales. In that case, you need to understand all the critical aspects and dynamics involved in the industry, the company, and the business culture you will be working for. Your sales obligations will consist of weekly, monthly, and yearly sales targets that must be maintained and exceeded. Companies expect a lot and have high expectations for you to produce results, perform and drive revenues with your customers consistently. You are a significant part of your organization’s financial metrics and success. You are required to use and be proficient in various pieces of software to create sales orders, generate your weekly\monthly sales reports and manage your customer base. Also, constant interactions with customers, other employees, and upper management will require voice, video technologies, or email communications. It is essential to remain connected and informed to succeed in your position. Your sales experience will include being up to date on company policies, guidelines, industry knowledge, and providing existing and new product information during and after a sale to your customers. Even top producers are not immune from the daily stress of overseeing all these responsibilities and tasks.
A sales job can be a complicated occupation, whether you’re in a V.P or sales team manager position for a company or an independent salesperson working directly with business owners and customers. You’re selling products, goods, or services in all industries, each with skills and expertise. Working in sales can be incredibly challenging, filled with long days of phone calls, emails, zoom meetings, open-ended tasks, and even traveling in and outside your physical location by car and plane. These duties and goals create long hours and stress on your health. Remember employers always have specific goals for their sales people/ teams.
Goals may include some of the following.
- Close $300,000 in total sales by the end of the current fiscal year.
- Send 75-100 cold emails by the end of each workweek.
- Make $100,000 in new deals by the end of Q2.
- Complete $10,000 in sales for June.
- Identify and execute 15 weekly new prospects and add them to the CRM system.
- Reduce customer churn, and increase customer retention.
- Generate new Sales Leads from this year’s Trade shows.
- Connect and travel to specific customers each week.
- Connect with customers and do weekly product demos.
- Lower Customer Acquisition Costs.
- Cross-sell and upsell products.
- Improvement and growth.
Many familiar aspects and demands involve the following skills and processes to be proficient and successful in your job. Learning to manage and understand some of these concepts efficiently will help you navigate your daily routine and reduce stress.
- The ability to understand your customers’ needs and being able to adapt.
- Ask open-ended questions, conversationally.
- Be an active listener and aim for problem solving.
- Develop trust, be responsive, and follow through on promises you make.
- Improve value communication between you and your customers.
- Continuously increasing your monthly or annual revenue.
- Reducing customer churn.
- Increase units sold and boost profit margins.
- Boost customer lifetime value.
- Increase the number of qualified leads.
- Developing new strategies to increase win rates.
- Lower customer acquisition costs.
Challenges many Salespeople face daily while doing their job that adversely affects their job performance, self-esteem, self-confidence, and overall health and wellbeing.
Dealing with rejection is the reality of interacting with people socially and a fact of life; it can feel demoralizing. Understand that rejection is never personal. Fear of rejection is a significant cause of sales call reluctance, especially using today’s remote online video technologies where face-to-face interaction is more prevalent. Frequent rejection is one of the biggest reasons many sales professionals abandon their careers.
(Some Possible Solutions)
- Don’t take the rejection personally.
- Refuse to internalize it.
- Assess the nature of the rejection
- Work on building confidence to increase your chances of succeeding.
- Review your sales strategy to see where you can improve.
- Practice your listening skills and responses and make improvements.
- Master and know your sales processes, and make necessary changes to improve closing more deals.
- Move on and focus on your next opportunity.
2. Difficult prospects:
Conversations with new prospects and potential deals don’t always go as planned. Sometimes dealing with certain unknowns, delays in follow-up, the buyer has ongoing questions and concerns that need to be addressed, and multiple decision-makers are involved so that the process can get arduous and complicated. As soon as you lose control, you’re probably losing the sale. Try not to become irritated, push or rush the sales process because your potential customer may begin to feel uncomfortable. Stay unemotional; otherwise, they will be able to sense this during your conversation, which could affect the outcome.
(Some Possible Solutions)
- Don’t use rookie sales tricks or strategies to reel them in or waste their time; if your product or services are not a good fit, move on to the next sales lead. Be passionate and not aggressive.
- Anticipate objections and rejections – practice turnarounds to deal with these oppositions to help you in the future.
- Use a firm but calm voice.
- Mirror their voice.
- Never raise your voice or argue.
- Get them to talk about their thoughts and concerns.
- Avoid or examine negotiation gridlock, find ways to keep your customer engaged, and work through any pain points preventing you from moving forward.
3. Losing deals:
You’re losing deals left and right; your competitors are doing a better job. You need to identify the problem and correct it. Once you do this, your job becomes more manageable, more productive, and profitable reducing stress.
(Some Possible Solutions)
- You’re presenting your products and solutions poorly.
- You aren’t solving the right problem.
- You aren’t adding value to the sales conversation.
- You cannot create a compelling case for your products or services or both for them to engage with you.
- You are neglecting the customer experience.
- We are failing to control the sales process.
- You’re being self-oriented.
- We are focusing on price and not value.
- Trying to match your competitor’s price or strategy instead of competing where you’re strong, effective, and they’re weak.
- You lack resources and sales enablement support to do your job effectively.
4. Pressure from management to perform:
You’re under the gun every week or month to produce new business, reach out to more prospects and generate more revenue; you’re doing everything in your toolbox to achieve your sales quotas. So you work more hours and harder for fear you will underperform or lose your job. It is taking a toll on your ability to think clearly and achieve success. Try and understand if it is you or the company you work for that is the problem and work towards a positive solution to fix it.
(Some Possible Solutions)
- Management may have unrealistic expectations for the work required to perform up to their standards or requirements.
- Ask for help if you need it; maybe your position requires too many responsibilities, requires too much time each day to accomplish, and additional people or support and management needs to address the problem.
- You’re being micromanaged constantly about your duties, abilities, and performance. Have a meeting with your boss, address your thoughts about the problem, and discuss a solution that mitigates the pressure you feel and what to do about it moving forward.
- Balance conversations with prospective and existing customers so you can meet your obligations and commitments each week/month and achieve your goals.
- Examine, analyze and understand your sales data correctly, and this will help you focus on profitable vital customers that will provide your best monetary returns. These conversions will keep you on the correct path to increasing business.
5. Becoming demoralized in your job:
Your job may be causing you to lose interest and enthusiasm, affecting how much energy you’re putting into completing daily tasks. These factors include poor management, limited career growth, complex company/customer culture, lack of meaningful work, and poor work/life balance. The better you are at distracting yourself from thinking these types of repetitive, demoralizing negative thoughts, and you will get over it faster. Change your mindset with thoughts of positivity instead. Doing things to increase your self-worth and confidence and improve yourself can boost morale. It will be necessary to address these issues head-on and work towards some reasonable solutions to keep moving forward. Otherwise, you will constantly feel stuck in your situation; consider exploring other job opportunities that offer better work environments that foster your health and career growth. In extreme cases, you may have to look at changing careers altogether to reduce your job-related stress.
6. Market changes:
The sales landscape is constantly in flux; adapting to changing buyers and evolving technology is crucial for success. It would help if you customized your offerings to each customer’s needs; this has always been part of a successful sales playbook. Creating the right mix of face-to-face and virtual personal selling and digital outreach and customer self-service is crucial to each buying/selling step.
7. Building trust with your customers online and being responsive
Staying connected and building trust with customers online is critical; sometimes, you succeed and other times you miss your mark. No matter what you do to help them, you will fail sometimes; responding to customers and your relationships is essential and need to be cared for with kid gloves. It’s not always possible to satisfy everyone and make people happy 100% of the time, and it’s a double-edged sword. You’re Interactions personally and on social media platforms are crucial to your company’s profitability and sales position success. It’s easy for individuals to praise or crucify your products and services online with unfavorable posts and comments, which can be vindictive rants with no suitable or substantial proof. These posts can often be indefensible or repairable on your part; anyone online now has an open mic to voice their opinions; unfortunately, it’s now part of the modern technology that we all have to deal with.
Always believe in your abilities, Things to remember!
A. Don’t compare yourself to others. Focus on your goals and work towards them.
B. Avoid negative people.
C. Don’t Dwell on Past Failures.
D. Remind yourself of prior successes.
E. Don’t beat yourself up when things don’t always go your way, just keep believing in yourself, avoid self-negative talk and replace it with positive affirmations instead.
9. Additional obstacles
A. Connecting via the phone, getting past all the gatekeepers to reach the correct people.
B. Competing with competitors.
C. Marketing and sales team’s integration.
D. Getting a response back from prospects.
E. Maintaining customer relationships post-sale.
Being available and always “on.”
Many salespeople are expected to be available on the job for their customers and business colleagues 24/7. This ongoing commitment can create massive stress and anxiety regularly. You feel obligated, but you also don’t want to let anyone down; you’re a team player! So you give up personal time for your colleagues and managers to perform; you need to appear productive and constantly work to make your customers happy and stay on your game.
Burnout is not classified as a medical condition; the World Health Organization (WHO) has acknowledged burnout as an occupational phenomenon that may lead to several symptoms such as:
- Exhaustion and extreme energy depletion.
- Negative feelings towards your job.
- Decreased satisfaction and sense of accomplishment.
- Reduced productivity, performance, and output.
- Loss of motivation
Supporting positive health habits like promoting a culture of work-life balance or funding gym memberships can minimize stress and burnout.
Some forms of stress can bring unexpected benefits to personal growth. In some instances, it can be helpful and hurtful, depending on how it is managed. The correct pressure can build drive, encourage competition, and motivate and help you achieve personal goals. It can give you an adrenaline rush to deliver excellent presentations to customers or the confidence to have a sales presentation in a room full of people. In contrast, the wrong kind can be destructive, painful, and paralyzing, even affecting your wellbeing. It is never helpful to become entirely consumed with worries. Instead, organizations and salespeople themselves should focus on clearing the way for motivation and dispelling unnecessary challenges and obstacles to sales success.
Methods to help you manage stress!
Below are 15 suggestions to help you effectively manage your stress to succeed in your sales role without being hindered by related duties, reducing your daily stress and anxiety. Much more importantly, what can be done to help you reduce it and create healthier ways of working every day?
- Make sure you get enough sleep. It can be tough to sleep when every deal and customer you’re working on is running through your mind over and over like a movie.
- Focus on one task at a time will provide clarity to get things done efficiently with minimal effort, pressure or tension.
- Meditate and take scheduled breaks during the day
- Make sure you eat right, change your diet, eat healthy foods to increase your energy, and drink plenty of water throughout your day.
- Limit or cancel too many daily appointments.
- Take short breaks, stretch, and take a walk. Remember to breathe.
- Mediate for 5-15 minutes every day. Learn to accept what is in your control and what isn’t.
- Form positive relationships as much as you can
- Stay organized.
- Exercise regularly, even if it is just a short walk.
- Take time to recharge.
- Find some personal time for yourself to work on hobbies or other interests that are not work-related.
- Talk to your boss or supervisor about work-related stressors.
- Consume less caffeine and sugar. Excessive use of caffeine and sugar makes you edgy and jumpy.
- Change your surroundings. Create a clean work environment, create your Zen space, Use aromatherapy, anything that provides comfortable surroundings that will help you calm down and make you relax and less tired.
Next time someone gives you a lot of grief or lip service about your job duties, or performance, send them a link to this blog post; maybe it will lighten the load and provide more compassion towards you for all you do every day.
At the end of each day, pat yourself on the back and know you put your heart and soul into your job to deliver the best service and support possible to each and every customer.