I was watching a football game yesterday and I noticed that how after scoring a touchdown, instead of celebrating on the sidelines, the whole offense was gathered around looking at pictures from the completion of a successful drive. You could tell that they were discussing what they did right and what they had to do differently on their next possession. Later in the same game, after a not so successful drive, they again were gathered around discussing what had just happened. This practice continued after every possession. It caught my attention when the announcer mentioned that the team had met with a Navy Seals team in the off-season and were taught how the Seals used what they called “debriefs” after every practice exercise. These “debriefs” served as an evaluation of every part of the exercise, what went right, what went wrong, what they needed to do differently next time. They learned from both the good and the bad, all with the goal to improve the overall performance.
When I first started in sales, my mentor, taught me the importance of evaluation. I remember him saying, “the three most important words in sales are Evaluate, Evaluate, Evaluate.” For emphasis, he would utilized his fingers, counting out while pointing out; Evaluate, Evaluate, Evaluate. He said that the only way to improve was to evaluate each and every call. He also said to make sure to evaluate the whole day from start to finish, and oh ya, do the same at the end of every week. He told me to take a good hard look in the mirror, and really evaluate the day and the week. For good or bad, forward or backward, success or failure, it all depends on what you evaluate and how you respond moving forward.
It’s important to learn from each and every client interaction, from what you did right, to what worked and what didn’t work with a client.
After a sales call – did you wow or whoa the client? What went well, what didn’t go so well? What should you have done differently? Did your pitch fall flat? If so why?
When you get home at the end of the day, look into to the mirror and ask yourself, “so how did I do today”? Did I give it everything I had? Did I give it my all? Did I accomplish everything I set out to do or did I “half ass” it?
On Friday afternoon, take a good hard look in the mirror. Now I’m not talking about a casual glance, where you half heatedly ask yourself the question. I’m talking about a serious look at the man in the mirror. Ask yourself seriously, how you are doing things and how did you do this week? Was it a good week? Was it a successful one? If not, why not? Were your priorities out of skew? Were you focusing on the preverbal wrong stack of mail?
The three most important words in sales, EVALUATE, EVALUATE, EVALUATE. For good and for bad, evaluation is a critical part of sales success. Make it a habit of evaluating every week, every day, every sales call. Take a page out of the Navy Seals playbook, and optimize your sales performance, debrief and evaluate. Your success depends on it.
Feel free to share your thoughts.