Why Tele-Reps Fail: Missing 100% of the Shots You Never Take

Wayne Gretzky once said, “You’ll miss 100% of the shots you never take.”

He was talking about taking risks; about doing things differently; about learning something new; about laying out on the line. I thought of this quote  last week when a tele-sales manager told me about a rookie he had hired.  Here’s what happened:

The tele-sales rep was given an article I wrote on voice mail messages.  The rep immediately declared that the message would not work. He derided the entire concept.

Mind you, he hadn’t tried it.

He just ‘knew.’

Apparently he is blessed with telekinetic powers that enable him know precisely what a prospect thinks. Equipped with these powers, the rep will never, ever have to try something new or different.

Well, here’s the point:

If you never try a new technique or apply a new idea you will never know whether it works or not.  You will never have to take a risk. You’ll never have to go through that awkward phase of learning something new. You’ll never have to worry about failing.

Nor will you ever have to worry about winning or succeeding.

You’ll stay precisely where you are. Or you’ll slide. Downwards.

One of the biggest problems that plagues sales professionals is going out on a limb and trying something new. It’s why many reps fail. Or if they don’t fail, they achieve staggeringly mediocre results. It is so much easier to ‘pooh hoo’ an idea than it is to give it a shot, right? Here’s the thing:  to achieve success you have to be prepared to take a risk.

What about you?

Do you seek out new ideas? Do you read or listen with an open mind? Do you give something an honest shot before tossing it aside? Or do you quickly dismiss a tip or tactic so that you will never have to make a change in your selling style?

This is a moment of truth. Think about it. It might be the one thing that’s holding you back from being wildly successful.

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