As a business owner, you do your best to stay on top of the sales game, right? Me too. But on Tuesday of last week, I wasn't even in the game. I'm here to confess: I made a sales blunder--one that I haven't made in years.
I received a call from a gentleman inquiring about one of my services, EFT Tapping. Unlike my business coaching services, I sell EFT sessions individually. Upon learning that the caller was an entrepreneur, I saw a greater opportunity for both of us and informed him that I am also a business coach. "I know," was all he said, followed only by silence.
Moments of silence like this don't usually bother me, but for reasons unknown I became a little uncomfortable. The words that left my mouth next surprised and disappointed me. "Well," I said. "It sounds like maybe all you need right now is a single EFT session." He said that was fine, and we arranged a time for the session and hung up.
On Monday, the day prior to this call, I'd read an insightful little book: Go for No! by co-authors Richard Fenton and Andrea Waltz. In it, the authors tell a story about a man who sold men's clothing for a living and how amazing he felt after making the biggest sale of his young career. The character's bubble was burst when the shop owner approached and said, "Nice sale. Tell me, what did the customer say no to?" Baffled by his boss's question, the man responded, "He didn't say no to anything." The boss: "Then how did you know he was done?"
The salesman in this story had applied his own mental spending limit to his customer's purchase. He had ended the sale, not the customer!
Upon concluding Tuesday's call, it immediately hit me that I had just done something similar. Since my prospect had initially called to inquire about EFT, I developed an opinion of his personal spending limits and applied it to our conversation. I not only short-sold myself, but I may have prevented this man from participating in a broader experience that would turn his life and business around!
This disappointing realization took me back to a time, years ago, when I made a similar mistake over and over again. As a new coach, I experienced a lot of discomfort when clients completed the sessions they had paid for. Rather than confidently offering them the opportunity to purchase more sessions and continue their new-found momentum, I remained focused on how much money they were spending on my services. These were my limitations, not theirs. Naturally, my lack of confidence and hesitance to ask for the sale often affected their decision. The worst part, however, was that I was applying limits to their success goals!
While I obviously still slip up from time to time, today I do my best to release all limitations in a sales (or any) conversation. I enter every discussion with curiosity and my mind open to an outcome that even I can't imagine. The results have been exciting, profitable, and expansive. What a different experience it is when we not only keep our personal limitations out of conversations but remove them altogether!
Limiting thoughts and beliefs are usually in place to protect us from a fear of rejection and expansion. This does not bode well for an entrepreneur. When I feel limiting beliefs creeping in, I remind myself of a powerful quote from Franklin Roosevelt's first inaugural address:
The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
Rather than wallowing in the fear of rejection or imposing your personal limitations on others, always open your mind to an outcome beyond the scope of what you believe possible. You'll not only enjoy and benefit from new experiences, but you'll touch the lives of many in the process.