The problem with a great quote is that it often rings so true, that it is easy to forget the power and depth of the profound words. However, if we act, the power does not diminish.

My quote for today is from Aristotle: “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit”.

In our Growth Matters Global Connect (on 3 February 2022), we will focus on the habits of high performing sales teams and how to embed these habits as a manager or sales professional.

Here are three of the most important of the habits that lead to sales excellence.

Habit 1: Mind your mind.

If we are what we repeatedly do, then what we do is based on what we repeatedly think.

As Tony Robbins says, “The story we own is the story we live”.

Our beliefs, values and experiences all shape and influence our repeated actions. Therefore, one of the most critical habits to establish is the habit of using self-talk that supports our performance.

Here is a challenge for you going into 2022:

Ask yourself if your story is serving you or harming you? If your self-talk is negative, focused on what is not working and littered with assumptions to justify outcomes in your life then it is time to mind your mind.

Our brains find evidence to justify any belief. So when we fill our minds with stories that do not serve us, our brain works hard to prove them true. This means it often IGNORES all the opportunities and abundance around us. And in building sales success we know that is fatal. Create the habit of instilling stories that serve you and stop those negative and limiting narratives that fight against your performance.

I know that some challenges are real and tough. But many of us give deeper meaning to challenges and give them more power than they deserve. Try to see them as what they are. Nothing better. Nothing worse. Face the reality, not the meaning you give it.

Are your thoughts serving you?

Habit 2: Contribute, don’t complain.

“People are more loyal to culture than strategy. Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” said Peter Drucker famously.

We all understand the importance of culture. Data shows us that in high-performing sales cultures sales professionals are more engaged, they perform more consistently, and customer experience scores are exponentially higher.

So what you waiting for? Waiting for someone else to fix the culture?

“Be the change you wish to see in the world”, said Gandhi.

Remember, you are the culture.

Let us take a step back to help you process this one. The best way to understand your culture is to answer this question: “Around here…”.

Around here accountability is…
Around here account planning is…
Around here email is…

Around here sales forecasting is…
Around here meetings are…

The answer to each of these questions reflects your culture. Culture essentially are the acceptable norms, or unwritten rules. So, is each norm helping or hindering your performance? If it is hindering performance, what are YOU going to do to fix it by helping to build a high-performing culture? Remember, you are the culture.

Here is your challenge for 2022:

What 2 to 3 areas of your culture are not serving customers or performance or are negatively affecting morale? List what you can do, say or think differently to try and change this.

Contribute, don’t complain.

Habit 3: Empathy over Energy.

Yes, of course we want engaged and energetic sales professionals. But it is important to be aware that passion can hide many sins and sometimes it can unintentionally derail your sales performance or culture of your team.

Let me explain. Imagine I gave you a mission. Your mission was to sit at a park bench and attract as many birds as possible. To help you I gave you a loaf of bread. Here is where energy and empathy differ.

Empathy -‘These birds are probably hungry. But they are also probably a little scared. I will need to build their trust.’ So you break the bread into small crumbs, and gently use these crumbs to attract a few birds. As you establish ‘trust’ you can share more crumbs and attract more. Well done. Mission accomplished.

Energy - when we are only energy driven (something I personally struggled with), we could think ‘These birds are hungry. I have food. I am going to get them all here now by giving them food’… and I toss the whole loaf at them. Our intent is pure but our action actually scares them away. We fail the mission and the birds go hungry.

Here is my challenge for you going into 2022.

Do I know what my customer really wants or needs? Do they know? How can I better understand their persona, pain and pursuits? How can I empathise with their world (their culture, inbox, pressures, life or stresses).

Energy well-directed creates traction. Energy misdirected creates friction. Find your traction.


If you liked this article, join us for our next Global Connect on 3 February 2022 on The Habits of High-Performing Sales Teams to set yourself up for success this year. Go here to book your spot.

Yours truly, Al.