There’s an ancient Buddhist story about a group of different-sized rocks placed into a single bag. Hypothetically speaking, you place your bag of rocks in your pocket and spend the next 100 years walking around with them. When you finally take the rocks out of the bag, they’re no longer the same rocks you put in your pocket 100 years ago. Their varying angles and textures have all smoothed into the same size and shape because they’ve rubbed against each other and smoothed out over time.
The rocks all conformed to the others around them. You didn’t chip away at them with your own hands. Just by being in proximity to one another, they became exactly the same.
Maybe you’re now thinking about past friendships or relationships where you woke up one morning and realized “this isn’t who I am.” Maybe your once-angelic son or daughter started hanging out with the wrong crowd and started cutting class and talking back to you.
The fact is, that when you spend so much time surrounded by people, good or bad, you start to morph into them.
Right now, you’re conforming yourself to the people you spend the most time with. The key is to be aware of the effect that’s having on your sales success. In the end, you’ll either sink to their level, stay on their level and never improve, or rise to their level and become better than you were yesterday. You always want to choose peers who drive you to be better than you were yesterday.
This is also important as far as the people you allow to give you feedback. Teddy Roosevelt has a brilliant quote about the benefit of the arena, which encompasses what you do every day. He says, “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood.”
What he’s saying is that the only feedback that matters comes from people who’ve done what you do. It doesn’t come from the critics on the outside. That’s why you need to limit the number of people you allow to give you feedback.
Behavioral researcher Brene Brown established this quick and easy process for qualifying your arena.
- They should only be people who’ve done what you’ve done before.
- Your list should be able to fit on a one-inch-by-one-inch piece of paper.
- They should be people who know you and have your best interests at heart.
As you take an honest look at the people in your life, this should be a liberating exercise, not an anxiety-driven one. This isn’t a call to leave behind any family, friends, or peers who aren’t in your arena, or who don’t have the same ambitions or goals as you. But it does mean that if you feel actively held back by anyone close to you, it’s time to have a tough conversation.
I call this the “here’s what it’s going to take” conversation. You may be asking when this is necessary, so let me give you an example. A friend of mine named Ashley told me a story about her husband who interviewed for a sales management position at a car dealership. She told me they interviewed her as well because they wanted to make sure that he was being supported at home. They knew, given the long hours and extra effort, a strong support system was imperative to his success.
If the expectations and behaviors around your goals aren’t clear, then tension with your peers and loved ones is inevitable.
The key isn’t to just assume your peers are in line with your goals. It’s to explain to that group of friends that maybe you won’t be able to make as many happy hours, but it doesn’t mean you value them any less. Or explain to your significant other that you might be late for dinner some nights, but you’re working to build a better future for the entire family down the road. That buy-in is everything, and it must be done upfront.
A sales warrior is bombarded by so many adverse situations with prospects on a daily basis that they can’t afford to take friendly fire from the rear. I lean on my peers in the Entrepreneur’s Organization for support, because they’re in the arena, they understand my struggles, and they have my best interests at heart. As a result, I’m continually strengthened. That’s why your support system is a crucial part of the foundation for a warrior mindset.
Traditional Sales And Leadership Training Fails To Address The Real Problem!
You’ve tried training your team in the past, but it didn’t really work. The old style of training just doesn’t seem to work anymore. It’s no secret that sales and leadership training is essential, but it can be hard to find a training program that actually works. Most programs are outdated and are not focused on changing behavior.
FPG Sales Training is different. We don’t use the traditional approach of lecturing your team for hours on end. Instead, we help your team understand their mindset and give them the tools they need to succeed. We help them remove their excuses so they can finally achieve their goals. Book a Meeting today!
Jason Forrest has disrupted the sales training industry by creating the first training program that changes behavior. This is done through 1) teaching tactical real-world processes; 2) the language of persuasion, 3) removing the mental leashes that hold people back, and 4) through a program-based training approach. This philosophy is what led his Warrior Selling® and Leadership Sales Coaching programs to be ranked in the top 2 of the World’s Top Sales Development Programs, by Global Gurus. His provocative style of speaking his truth ranks him at number 5 on the Global Sales Guru list.
Jason is a Master Practitioner in Neuro-Linguistic Programming, the science of influence and behavioral change. He is also a Practitioner in Accelerated Evolution, the psychology of removing fear in high performers.