If you are a salesperson, or a sales manager, you are probably guilty of using the age old excuse that the holidays are responsible for poor sales performance. "Everyone is busy and distracted", you might say. "With holiday parties, vacations, and days off, there is no way I can hit my goals", is also a common thought process. If you buy into this thought process, you are creating exactly what you are telling yourself you will create - a poor sales performance! You are letting yourself off the hook by providing a convenient, logical reason that you are not going to sell. Here are a couple of things that you can do to avoid this trap, and make the holidays your best sales time of the year:
1. Create a More Powerful Belief System
Instead of using the holidays as an excuse for poor sales, change your belief system. If you believe that the holidays are a great time to sell, this shifts your paradigm. Ask yourself and your staff how you can take advantage of the holidays to sell more. Maybe you can run a holiday promotion. Perhaps a sales contest is in order. Whatever it may be, shift your thinking, and figure out how to make the holidays work for you.
2. Focus Your Time
While it is true that people are on vacation, having holiday parties, and sometimes less focused than they need to be, it doesn't mean that you have to be. Make sure that you keep your focus during the holidays by setting some aggressive goals, and utilizing your time wisely. Remember, focus is the lack of distractions, so don't let the holidays be an excuse for losing focus.
3. Take Advantage of the End of the Year
While the end of the year means holidays, it also means budgeting time for next year. Most departments within companies have to spend what is in their budget for this year to avoid losing it for next year. Therefore, take advantage of this by pointing this out and using it to accelerate the sales process.
4. Build Relationships
The holidays are the perfect time to build relationships with clients and customers. Most people are in a good mood, and are more open to being distracted with lunches, parties, and other things. Therefore, use this to your advantage to take clients out to lunch, thank them for their business, and foster stronger relationships. This will pay dividends moving forward!
5. Take Advantage of Your Competition
The holidays are a great time to take advantage of your competition by outworking them! While they are making excuses, taking time off, and generally distracting themselves from what they should be doing (ie what you used to do), step up your efforts and take business away from them. Run some promotions, make some additional sales calls, and do some additional sales presentations while the opportunity is available.
By eliminating the normal holiday excuses and shifting your belief system, you can take advantage of the holidays and make them the best sales time of the year!