As the Manager of Recruiting, a big part of my job revolves around interviewing sales representatives. Over the past couple of years, I’ve noticed that the majority of people I’ve talked with have some sort of excuse for why their sales aren’t better. I’ve heard every possible excuse but the one that gets me all fired up is when they shift the blame on someone/something else (i.e. their company, the economy, etc.) other than themselves. I don’t mean to be too direct here, but stop blaming others and look in the mirror! While I understand that some companies have had to limit spending on the products we offer, EVERYBODY needs our products and EVERYBODY eventually runs out and has to order more.
I often think of the movie Monsters, Inc. when I get into a discussion like this with a sales representative. Monsters, Inc. is about an alternative world where monsters live in the city of Monstropolis, which suffers from continuous power failures. The monsters generate power for their city by scaring children and capturing their screams as an energy source. The power company is failing because children are becoming harder to scare which is creating a lack of energy. The monsters are concerned by this lack of energy, but they didn’t think to try something different. Even though their old methods were proving increasingly more difficult, there were many who clung to the tried and true. Long story short, by the end of the movie, the monsters come to realize that laughter is far more powerful than a scream. Months later, the power company is having record success and now has a surplus of energy.
Take a lesson from the movie Monsters, Inc. Instead of coming up with excuses, take a look in the mirror. Review your business practices and think about new and creative things to try. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. It just may change your business for the better!