Reloading the Task

Last week I had an interesting conversation with my brother, we were discussing a past job that we both had that involved sales calls. The discussion started because my sister had just purchased a new car and she made a comment about something the salesman said to her. The salesman thanked her for the purchase and added an extra comment about times being tough and getting people to come in just isn’t that easy, even when people request information it’s hard to convince them to come in to visit with you. This comment sparked a discussion on the reason why it’s so hard to get people to come in to talk to sales reps.


Having past experience in making sales calls, it’s easy to get frustrated if you don’t know how to reload the task at hand. The task is simple, call thirty people and schedule five appointments. The problem comes when you run into a situation of bad calls, just how do you handle it. The answer is the same approach we handle a bad shot in shooting. When I started shooting in High School my father taught us that if you shoot a good shot you must feast on that shot, and if you shoot a bad shot you must focus on how can I make the next one better. This is done immediately after the task at hand, which is shooting a shot in rifle shooting. I got into the habit of always focusing on the solution to making my bad shots better and not allowing the bad shot to affect future shots. This same principle can be applied to the salesman when making phone calls.


Instead of the car salesman focusing on how hard it is to get people into the store, he should take a few minutes to focus on how the call could have gone better before making his next call. Maybe his enthusiasm needs to be higher, or he needs to get to the point sooner rather than later. Regardless the correction, he should take time to mentally rehearse that call with the proper corrections. This imprints that the last call was a good one and therefore increases the likelihood that future sales calls will be successful.


–Troy Bassham

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