I’ve asked several of my clients when they last saw their clients in person. A very (very) few of them have had recent in-person visits. The vast majority have had no in-person visits. From early sales conversations to client delivery, every part of the process is now virtual.
For most, this is an entirely new way of operating, and it’s not going back anytime soon. In fact, I think there is much good that will come out of the way we have been shaken up. I envision a hybrid model well into the future. Where much of our sales process can be done virtually, and some of our sales process and client delivery can be accomplished in person.
As one of my clients has said, “the go-to moves are no longer available to us. We have to think and operate differently.” Many sellers and business developers are living with the discomfort of having to think and operate differently. Of needing to quickly learn and apply new skills real time. Their book of business depends on it. Success in this hybrid world requires even more focus on mindset.
How do you continually keep your mindset when you’re competing against major distractions, both in your head and in the outside world? There are 6 mindsets that I see every seller and sales leader needing to master, to move forward successfully in this hybrid world.
- Agility. One hallmark of agility is the ability to filter through a lot of information, to pull out the right intelligence for your prospects and clients. This is more critical than ever before because your prospects and clients are dealing in major overwhelm. Another hallmark of agility is to reframe failure. Especially important when you’re learning new skills, this approach is about taking the lessons from the experience, seeing them as data points, and using them to improve.
- Optimism. You choose to see the positive in a situation, even amid negativity. It’s the ability to process through negativity quickly and return yourself to an outlook that sees a way forward. You see every interaction as an opportunity to make a difference, and you persevere through rejection. Your prospects and clients will know right away whether you take an optimistic outlook or not – and it will be remembered.
- Systematic. This mindset is about creating the right structure for your days. In each day, we have a finite amount of time, energy, motivation, and discipline. Consider how you’re using these resources on your most critical activities, whether professional or personal. The results you create tomorrow are a direct result of how you structure and use your most important resources today.
- Persistent. Persistence is the mindset that keeps you from giving up too soon. Especially right now, where it’s easy to have an excuse to not follow through on your most important activities. It’s the decision to continue taking the next step forward, and the next step after that. It’s also the decision to stay market-forward and not shrink back; to remain actively in front of your prospects and clients.
- Competitiveness. Especially in sales and business development, there needs to be a drive to win, and maintain a sense of competitiveness. It’s that sense of competitiveness that helps you think more creatively, to put in the discretionary effort that will help you stand out. Competitiveness also plays into optimism, in deciding that you’re going to win. Competitiveness is mental fuel to keep you focused.
- Emotional Management. This is the ability to work through the fears and doubts that can dominate right now. All the ups and downs that come with sales and also managing through the disruption we’re facing. Emotional management even helps you to manage success, to keep you motivated and avoid becoming complacent. A place to begin with emotional management is a check in with habits like sleep, nutrition, exercise, and mental health.
I’ll leave you with three ways to implement these mindsets.
- Choose the 1 mindset you’d like to work on, and focus on it for 30 days. When you work on one, you’ll see a ripple effect into the others as you improve.
- With that one you chose, first become more aware of it. An easy way to do this is over a period of 2-3 days, jot down those moments where you’re doing it well and where you have an opportunity to improve.
- Acknowledge where it went well to help you amplify it for the future. And then decide on how you’d like to improve what can be improved.
Above everything else, mindset is a choice. It’s a leadership choice, and our prospects and clients pick up on it. Our prospects and clients will be drawn to us, and we will win more, when we lead with the right mindset.
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