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They say that most people never truly live up to their full potential. We sell ourselves short on what we’re truly capable of, and few of us push ourselves to the limit. Much of this comes down to bad habits that we’ve developed over many years.

Our bad habits follow us around from school, to work, and from job to job unless we make an active effort to stop them. Eliminating bad habits will make you a better salesperson, just like using Spiro’s AI-powered sales automation CRM will. Here are the habits you should eliminate:

1. Complaining

Complaining might seem like it makes us feel better in the moment, but it changes our thought patterns and makes us focus on the negative instead of the positive. It’s also very contagious, so stay away from the complainers you work with while you’re eliminating complaints from your vocabulary.

2. Making assumptions

As we mature, many of us start to form assumptions and judgments about people immediately upon meeting them. This is a mistake in sales, because your assumptions can change how you approach a customer, and end up costing you a deal. For instance, you may assume someone isn’t qualified based on how they look, but in many cases your assumptions will simply be wrong. Don’t assume anything until you go through the process of qualifying everyone you come across equally and fairly.

3. Talking

This is one of the most common bad habits of salespeople, but it’s also the one that seems like it would be easy to fix. Listening is much more important in sales than talking is. A great listener will not only get the customer’s trust, but will let the customer tell them everything they need to know in order to close the deal. Seriously, on your next call or sales presentation, just ask your questions and be quiet and let the customer speak. You’ll be amazed at how well it works.

4. Getting distracted

In the fast-paced world we’re all living in, with smartphones and social media distracting us constantly, it can be hard to get rid of this bad habit. But those salespeople who are able to concentrate only on what needs to get done will succeed far above and beyond the rest who let distractions control their lives. Put away the phone, stop gossiping, and focus on the tasks of your job, and save the distractions for after you accomplish what you set out to accomplish each day.

5. Making excuses

Our natural reaction to not achieving our goals is to find some exterior cause for our failure. Making excuses helps us deflect from our own shortcomings, and it’s toxic to success. If you can eliminate the bad habit of making excuses and take responsibility for your own actions despite any external circumstances, then you will become better and more successful. Excuses do nothing to help us achieve our goals or encourage personal growth, they’re simply a useless waste of time and energy.

6. Thinking only about what you want

This is one of the tougher bad habits to eliminate, but it’s one that can really make a big difference in your sales career. We always think about what we want: to hit our sales goals, to buy a new car, to make more money for our families. But the best sales reps and business people understand that it’s what the customer wants that truly matters. Develop your empathy, and minimize your selfishness, and sales success will quickly follow.

7. Giving up

In the book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, the author Angela Duckworth makes the case that it’s grit, not talent, that is the most critical component in people’s success. Those who fail but keep trying, she writes, will go further than those who have more natural ability but less grit. Being too hardheaded and determined to give up is the single best quality you can develop as a salesperson. As they say, “Hard work beats talent, when talent doesn’t work hard.”

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About the Author Adam Honig

Adam is the co-founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a natural sales leader with a mission to help salespeople make more money using artificial intelligence — or any sort of intelligence for that matter. Adam has been a founder of four companies which resulted in two triumphant IPOs and two legendary mergers. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the ‘No Jerks’ hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.

One Comment

  • Richard Benchimol says:

    Thanks for the tips. I believe that one needs to focus on what has to get done in the company. We all want a good paycheck, in order to get that we also need to think about serving the companies best interests. Companies need to be able to help the sales team (and everyone else) when they are in need. Thanks again.
    Richard Benchimol
    Leads Indeed http://www.leadsindeed.com

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