Two weeks ago we covered why persistence is so important in sales, and how to develop more of it. After the article was published, multiple people messaged us and noted that patience was something that was equally as important and asked us to write a post about it. Since some of us struggle with impatience, we decided to write it right away instead of waiting like a patient person would have.
Having patience is critical if you want to be successful in sales. It helps when it comes to being patient enough to stick with sales long term, and being patient with prospects who require it instead of pushing them away with high-pressure sales tactics. Of course, it can be a fine line to walk since you always have to act with a sense of urgency. But there’s no doubt that becoming a more patient person will help you sell more. Here are some tips that can help:
1. Recognize your impatience
We need to admit that we’re a bit impatient if we are to have any chance of doing anything about it. Try to identify the times your impatience kicks in and think of the triggers for it. Of course, driving in traffic can make anyone feel impatient, but really try to identify the things that set it off for you. Is it when clients ask too many questions, or when they take too long to review a proposal? If you can recognize what’s setting you off, you can then focus on how you’ll be patient the next time it happens.
2. Turn off your brain
Being able to turn off your thoughts, even if it’s for a matter of seconds can help reduce impatience. The next time you’re feeling frustrated at how long something is taking, or just feeling rushed and full of anxiety, try not thinking about anything at all. You’ll sense thoughts creeping back in almost instantly, but brush them aside and focus on not thinking at all. If you train yourself to clear your mind when your impatience flares up, you’ll eventually be able to manage it quite well.
3. Come up with a plan
A big reason for why salespeople can feel impatient is because there are so many variables, and so much pressure on us at any given time. Coming up with a weekly or daily plan and then sticking to it can negate some of that uncertainty, and provide a roadmap for everything we do day to day. Try to break your day down into specific tasks, and only allow really pressing issues to derail that plan. Although the pressure will still be there, you’ll have a map to revert to whenever you start feeling impatient.
4. Learn how to meditate
Meditating is probably not on most salespeople’s to-do list, but it can really help reduce your impatience, increase mood and concentration and help you sell more. Meditation and mindfulness are amazing mood improvement activities, and can really change your entire demeanor. Prospects absolutely love patient salespeople who are great listeners, and regular meditation can help you become one. Who knows, maybe you can even meet some prospects in your yoga class.
5. Look at the big picture
Salespeople get so bogged down in the day to day that we rarely take a step back to look at the big picture. It’s only when we start to think in terms of years that we understand how every little bit of daily work adds up to something bigger. Impatience also goes away when you can really put things in context and understand that even if something doesn’t happen this minute or this week, that you need to keep moving forward and look at your results over the long term.
6. Tune out distractions
One of the biggest stressors for salespeople, and the cause of so much impatience is the constant barrage of messages, demands, request, responses, and all other factors that come as a result of dealing with so many different people at once. If you want to have more patience, you need to learn how to prioritize what’s important, and tune out distractions as much as possible. That mandatory HR training needs to get done, yes, but as far as importance goes, it certainly ranks well below responding to your most interested prospect. Of course, Spiro can help you figure out what to focus on to close more deals, even if it can’t tune out your manager’s daily emails.