Increase Sales & Recruiting

Being a sales leader does not mean that the people on your team will naturally become top sellers. Being a recruiting leader does not mean that the people on your team will naturally want to recruit.  

The secret to being a leader that empowers and builds other leaders is holding others accountable for the goals they set and the declarations they make. This might sound tough, but it’s actually the most supportive thing that you can do for anyone on your team and for yourself as well.

“Cast your bread on the surface of the waters, for you will find it after many days.” (Ecclesiastes 11:1) My interpretation of that? Whatever you send out comes back to you. So in this instance, every time you give someone permission to release his/her goals because of a circumstance, you cannot help but give that same permission to yourself!

Hello! Don’t do that!

Leadership is about holding others and oneself accountable, and far from being insensitive, this action requires true generosity. So let’s investigate why that is by taking a look at a possible conversation between a leader and a team member that is using a circumstance as the reason why she’s going to stop working her business.

Let’s just say that this team member was at your company’s national conference with you six weeks ago and at that conference she announced how she wanted to start selling $3,000 every month and to have a team of six people before the end of the year. You notice, however, that since the conference she’s only placed one order for $330. You may find yourself wanting to put off making a phone call to this team member.

Hello! Don’t do that!

Leadership is about stepping into conversations that most people choose to avoid. How on earth can you begin that conversation? I’m so glad you asked! Certainly not by pretending that you haven’t noticed anything and asking how everything is going! You know how it’s going – it’s not going the way this team member said it was going to go back at the conference six weeks ago!

The best way to discover how you can provide additional support and training is to begin by acknowledging what is actually occurring in this team member’s business right now.

Example:

Leader: The reason I’m calling is because I know how challenging it can be to find the time to work this business when you have a full-time job and a family, and I’m wondering if that is what you are confronted with right now.

Leaders do not pretend because the truth does not scare them – they notice when the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes and they also point out that he isn’t wearing any!

By quickly addressing the issue at hand, you acknowledge that something is in the way of this team member doing what she said she would do, and you simultaneously bring trust and support to this conversation. When trust, understanding, and authenticity exist in a conversation, you can feel certain that real communication is present, and real communication always makes a difference!

Example:

Leader: The reason I’m calling is because I know how challenging it can be to find the time to work this business when you have a full-time job and a family, and I’m wondering if that is what you are confronted with right now.

Team Member: That’s exactly what I’m dealing with. I set all those goals at the conference, but once I got back home, I had a ton of things to do to get caught up at work, I had to get all my children ready to go back to school, and every person that I thought would host a party has told me “No” or “Not right now.” This is just too time consuming for me.

Leader: Hmm… it sounds like you’re really feeling discouraged because the people you thought would get your business off to a good start are not willing to host a party right now. And you’re feeling like this might be too time consuming for you with your job and your family. Is that what you’re saying?

Team Member: Yes. I’m feeling really down.

Leader: I can understand that, and I can assure you that others have this same experience. Getting your business rocking and rolling is not always easy, but there are some simple steps that I can go over with you right now to assist you so that you feel equipped to get back on the playing field. Can I share some of those things with you right now?

Team Member: I don’t know. I think I need to face facts – I don’t have enough time to be successful in this business.

Leader: Maybe not, but you know what? I remember how excited you sounded six weeks ago at the conference, I remember the confidence and the conviction you expressed that you could do whatever you set your mind to do. And that is who I know you to be – someone who is capable of doing whatever you set your mind to do.

So it’s not going to be easy for you… since when did you need things to be easy for you to excel?

Team Member: Oh my gosh, how true is that? Nothing I’ve ever done that’s truly important to me has been easy!

I knew I shouldn’t have taken your call – you’ve totally inspired me to get my behind back in gear!

Leader: The truth is you always want to take my calls because I’m the one person you can absolutely count on to never sell out on you and your goals.

So let me repeat something… there are some simple steps that I can go over with you right now to assist you so that you feel equipped to get back on the playing field. Can I share some of those things with you right now?

Team Member: That sounds great.

There are numerous things that I love about the above conversation. First, I love that the leader doesn’t give up just because the team member refuses her help. This leader’s focus is not on herself; her focus is on the team member, which is why she has no difficulty staying in the conversation when the team member first rejects her offer to help.

Second, I love how generous this leader’s listening is of the team member. I believe that the most generous thing we can do for others is to listen to them without judgment. Listening to others without judgment is what I call true generosity.

Listening without generosity sounds similar to the following thoughts:

  • “I’ve heard this before!”
  • “This always happens to my best team members!”
  • “I’ve been through tough times too, but I didn’t just throw in the towel!”

It’s obvious that the leader in this conversation set aside thoughts like those and sought to keenly listen for what this team member was going through. This leader wasn’t afraid to recall what the team member declared at the national conference, which demonstrated how committed she was to this team member achieving her goals.

Near the beginning of this article I asserted that leaders empower and build other leaders by holding others accountable for the goals they set and the declarations they make, and that contrary to what one might imagine, it’s the most supportive action anyone can take for another as well as oneself.

Surely you noticed how empowering it would be to have someone tell you – I know who you are. I remember what you declared six weeks ago, and I won’t let you forget it. You are someone who can achieve whatever you set your mind on achieving, and I refuse to give up on you!

I’m not proud of this, but I’ve given up on myself dozens of times (Egads! Maybe even more than that!), but fortunately there’s always been a leader nearby to give me a swift kick in the rear and say, “I refuse to see you as the person you’re pretending to be.”

Tammy Stanley directs The Tammy Stanley Sales Refinery. She shows how to increase sales and recruiting with irresistible offers and true leadership via keynote presentations, workshops, webinars, and audio and video training programs.