Written by Sean McPheat |
I was talking to a sales manager recently, who was concerned about one of his salespeople.
This person was suffering from a negative mind-set, where if he didn’t sell or at least get the appointments he wanted, he felt very demoralised and actually called himself a failure.
This happens regularly, where a person’s self-esteem and self-worth are linked to their results.
If they succeed in getting the results they want, then they consider themselves to be a success; if the opposite happens, then they label themselves as a failure.
There is seldom a middle-ground. You either win or lose, succeed or fail.
What could I say to this person’s sales manager?
Well, he was always trying to encourage his salesman, offering ideas on improvements and trying to convince them the results they are getting will get better soon.
Our mind-set is one of the biggest drivers of our results.
If it’s going well for us, we tend to become more positive and this leads to more opportunities being seen as time goes by.
If it doesn’t, then negative vibes could be present, having an obvious effect on our actions and, hence, our results.
Being a ‘failure’ is a label we place upon a situation where we would have wanted a different result. It’s a judgement on a result we have achieved, and it causes a change in our emotions.
By concentrating on failure, it makes us feel we can’t progress.
What can we do in these situations?
Well, it may seem simplistic, but it actually works.
Instead of applying the label ‘failure’ to these situations, apply the label ‘outcome’.
By seeing the result as an ‘outcome’, we change the mind-set away from what was a failure to now it being a result.
That result wasn’t what we wanted.
So, we ask the question, ‘What can we learn from this?
What has to happen in the future to prevent this from happening again?
What changes do we have to make so we get different results next time?’
Now, these questions change our mind-set away from what was wrong to what can we do to make it right?
Remember, we can’t change the past mistakes but we can do something to stop it from happening in the future.
I said to the sales manager to discuss with his salesperson how he could review the results and see them as outcomes.
This mind-set changes the attitude, because it stops the thought process of ‘what’s wrong with this?’ and changes it to ‘what can I do with this to make it right?’
Try it yourself; stop thinking of non-successful results to be failures, and turn them into outcomes.
That should help you see situations in a different light.
Originally published: 13 September, 2016