Documenting the journey can be extremely powerful because it allows us to capture the full breadth of what actually happened and underscores the value of trying and failing serendipitous moments, and creating something from nothing.
We can’t just cherrypick the best moments and call it a great life. What we miss when we only highlight the wins or post picture number 27 when we finally got the perfect angle are all those in-between awkward times when we didn’t feel great or didn’t think we were good enough. We need the bad moments, the silly moments, the random moments. We need all of it to know where we’ve been and who we are.
We can be proud we believed in our purpose and knew that it had to be shared. That’s when we are at our happiest. When our authentic selves get to shine through and we are naked to the world. Those are the moments that count. Those are the moments that actually help us grow.
Progress was shared. Not a glimpse of a “perfect” life.
That’s what we should all strive for. Letting the world know where we are different, how we think about things, and how others can use our lessons to help navigate their own journey.
Without it, the story has a lot of holes and is incomplete.
After his life as a consulting actuary to Fortune 100 Companies, David built the world’s largest coaching business, becoming #1 on Google for “life coaching.”
Discovering that Shiny-Object-Syndrome is an epidemic among high performers, David coaches rock-star business owners to double revenue, achieve more in less time, and be a more extraordinary entrepreneur, partner, parent, and leader.
If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my first interview with David on the Just Get Started Podcast –David Wood on Episode #144
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Peter Kozodoy is an Inc. 5000 serial entrepreneur, TEDx speaker, and business coach who works with organizations and their leaders to help them overcome self-limiting bullsh*t and use honesty to achieve greatness. His articles on leadership and entrepreneurship have appeared in Forbes, Inc., HuffPost, PR Daily, and more. He holds a BA in economics from Brandeis University and an MBA from Columbia Business School and lives outside New York City with his wife and their spoiled dog. To strike up an honest conversation, visit PeterKozodoy.com.
You don’t need me to tell you this but this is a TON of information out there on the sales profession and a million different opinions on what you should do and how you should do it. From prospecting new clients to navigating the sales cycle, to follow-ups and referrals, it’s borderline exhausting. It’s a big topic, I get it. But it can also be confusing for a lot of the new people that are trying to sell products whether you are “carrying your own bag” for an organization, are running your own business, or are pitching investors and gaining proof-of-concept in a start-up. I think there is an easier way.
I want to strip that all away for a moment and focus on the key characteristics that I feel are essential across the board for any sales professional to succeed. I’ve seen it first hand and it’s not complicated. It’s just logical and takes time to refine and sharpen. However, if you put the time into each and every one of these I am confident that you’ll be able to reach new heights in your career and start to understand the relationship element that is so vital in any partnership.
We are in a new era of sales with much more information out there for the buyer, and frankly, a much savvier buyer which I love. The reason I love it is because human interaction and relationships matter again. Honesty matters. Integrity matters. Respect matters.
I don’t think these things ever went away but a lot of software products were ahead of their time before the client could actually form an opinion and do thorough due diligence. Now, with much more information at their fingertips and the curve from innovators moving to the early and late majority there is more of a level playing field and buyers are back in control.
Times are changing and I feel this new age of sales is going to weed out a lot of those sales professionals that stick with the old way of doing it and fail to make the shift. You are going to have to have true empathy, you are going to actually put the client first, you are going to be professional and brutally honest in your responses when you can do something and when you can’t.
I think the hardest part about sales is all of the BS and bad habits people have learned for years that they try to wedge, fit, or shimmy into an already broken process. They drive to regurgitate what they learned in a book 10 years ago. It doesn’t work that way anymore. People are too smart. That all changes today.
I don’t have all the answers, far from it, but what I do feel I have uncovered is a clear path that new and old sales professionals alike can be cognizant of and continue to build on as they develop their “in-game’ skills. These are not tricks and tactics but the characteristics that will be paramount to future success. None of these should be a surprise but I hope they make you think a bit more about how you project yourself in your business dealings and where you can find areas to improve.
Here are the main areas I am going to focus on:
Over the next 8-part series I’ll break into each of these areas, share some personal stories, and hopefully get you to focus inward on self-awareness and how we can improve in all of these areas. Like a video game, we all have different levels of each of these, and some rank higher in certain areas than others. I expect you to be strong in some and weak in others. What is important is that we know we can improve in all of these areas and my goal is to get you to think differently about each and every one of these and how it applies toward working through partnerships in your sales career going forward.