Forward-thinking companies are realizing that their sales force is actually an entrepreneurship: it is composed of people who act and think as entrepreneurs. If there is a single factor that separates entrepreneurs from the rest of society, it would be that they make their own games. Salespeople may be (and usually are) employed by others, must follow company policy and report to sales management. But at the end of the day, they see themselves as the ones responsible for their own incomes, their own success or failure, and even their own customer relationships.
Here are some basics for salespeople—meaning entrepreneurs—to follow in the creation of their own futures.
Keep Your Own Standards
Any company you work for will, of course, set standards for their employees. These relate to conduct on the job as well as conduct when dealing with prospects and clients.
Personally, however, you should have your own standards, and they should be higher than those your company is setting for you. Conduct yourself well within the company; treat your fellow sales reps and management with respect and encouragement, and do everything you can to actually help your prospects and clients. Be a shining example of a teammate and salesperson that people look up to.
Be Your Own Motivation
Employees rarely motivate themselves; they usually look to their employers for motivation.
The primary motivation companies give their employees is, of course, monetary compensation. This includes benefits and bonuses. There are also, of course, penalties: if employees are late or break other company rules they can be reprimanded and repeated infractions can mean loss of the job.
But you’re not just an employee-you’re engaged in your own entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs are natively “self-starters.” To thrive and do a great job, entrepreneurs require no motivation outside of themselves.
Forge Your Own Relationships
Today it is normally the marketing department of a company that is tasked with company and product promotion, as with lead generation. This is for the best as it relieves salespeople of that task and leaves them to concentrate on straight selling.
But since entrepreneurs count on their own initiative, it is in salespeople’s best interest to engage in networking and making their own contacts, above and beyond what their company’s marketing department is doing. This would mean diving into social media and becoming an active participant in professional social media platforms such as LinkedIn, attending trade shows and other gatherings where you might encounter prospects. You never know where the next big sale could come from—and it could very well result from a network friend who also just happens to work for a company that totally fits your company’s prospect profile.
Wherever you go and whatever you do, make it known that you’re the “go-to person” for your type of product or service.
Entrepreneurship Means to be Always Thinking and Planning
Entrepreneurs are well-known for being constantly on the lookout for opportunities. They are also known for constantly thinking about how they could do a task better, or considering new and unique approaches to problems. For example, they’ll routinely be in the middle of something like watching a movie and suddenly have an inspiration about their own activities from a plot point in the film.
As an entrepreneur your day doesn’t end when you leave the office or stop actively working. Your job operations should never be completely off your mind; you never know when the next great idea for tackling or closing a sale will strike.
Insist on an Empowering CRM Solution
In making your own game and creating your future, you’re going to need a CRM application that fully empowers you to do so. You need to be able to rapidly estimate and analyze your pipeline, and quickly access data about any sale within it. You need the ability to rapidly record information about a sale-in-progress and move on and to easily and quickly generate any sales reports required for sales management. A CRM solution that is any less than that cuts right across your ability to function at full steam.
Remember: no matter who you’re working for, you are your own entrepreneurship. Do everything possible to make your own game—and that game will be yours for the taking.
If your CRM solution does not meet the above standards, sign up for one of our free webinars to discover one that does.