If I Only Knew Then What I Know Now - A Sales Success Story


“Don’t be upset by the results you didn’t get from the work you didn’t do!”

This is my new favorite quote by motivational speaker Eric Thomas. It easily applies in all areas of life, but for today's blog, I'll focus on how it applies to my work. While I’m new to Butler Street, I come with 15 years of professional sales experience. Prior to completing our Sales Effectiveness Training, I thought I had a pretty solid approach to my business. Despite my approach, I wasn't consistently hitting my goals which became very frustrating!


Que up the excuses…

  • “The economy isn’t what it used to be!”

  • “Our prices aren’t competitive enough!”

  • “Covid!!”

  • “We just aren’t big enough to compete with XXX company."

  • “Prospects don’t answer their phones anymore…meetings are harder to get nowadays!”

  • “I lost my biggest account…”

Looking back, getting caught up in the whirlwind of "socially accepted" excuses was easier. I’m guilty of using all of them at some point in my sales career. I didn't realize that I was the only one holding myself back from achieving the goals I had set for myself. With my newly sharpened skills, I could have done things differently - been more strategic with my preparation for each client interaction - and achieved much better results.


Why are my results so much better with Butler Street? A few things:


1. We Plan for Every Client Interaction


Gone are the days of winging a sales meeting. While planning is an unnatural process, it is a critical step prior to any client meeting that many salespeople fail to do. Previously, I excelled at all the planning leading up to the meeting but then failed to plan out the most important part! Coming up with questions to help gain insight into the client’s operating reality. Follow-up with planned questions to uncover gaps in the business is crucial to advancing the relationship and, ultimately the sales process. Without planning your calls, you will never have an opportunity to be viewed as a strategic thought partner to your clients. At Butler Street, we use an incredibly helpful Sales Call Planning tool that I wish I had access to many years ago. In addition, I've incorporated several other best practices, such as following our 12-week/16 touch prospecting plan and emailing client recaps after every meeting to ensure we’re always on the same page. These tools and best practices are the same ones provided in our Sales Effectiveness Programs!


2. Non-Optional Culture


A Non-Optional Culture is one in which employees are NOT given the choice of whether they want to be exceptional or not. Butler Street has clearly defined expectations around the Four Cornerstones of Success® and discipline around activity and performance. In fact, we are all managed through performance agreements that are defined and agreed upon by both parties. Socially accepted excuses don’t fly here! We are as responsible for our failures as we are for our successes!


3. Successful Failures


Of course, I know it's impossible to succeed in every situation. But it is possible to learn something from every single failure! What could I have done differently?

“The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.” - Henry Ford

A best practice at Butler Street is to regroup after every call/meeting and discuss what went well and what we could have done differently. It’s okay to make mistakes as long as we learn from them. The sales team gets together weekly so we can role practice challenging client scenarios. No matter how tenured the team is (some have been in sales for 35+ years), we all work together weekly to become better at our craft and elevate our abilities.


As I continue to sharpen my skills and build my business here at Butler Street, I will constantly remind myself of the motivational quote "Don't be upset by the results you didn't get from the work you didn't do!" It applies to many aspects of my life and never loses its power! I hope you’re able to think of ways it may impact your life as well.


At Butler Street, we help salespeople, recruiters, and leaders of all skill levels and tenure put the necessary habits in place to be more effective at their job. Please contact us to learn more about how we can help you develop your talent.