What is the difference between making a decision and making a plan? Well for starters, plans always seem to change. You plan to get ten new sales this month and your plan, likely fails. However, when you make a decision to get ten new sales this month, you get ten new sales.
Your focus is now committed to getting those sales and through your decision, all other options have been cut off. That literally is the meaning of “decision”. It will be done no matter what. History is full of stories of people who decided that they would set a goal and achieve it, even if they were the only ones in the world who believed it could be done.
There is a true story of an old-time salesman who had decided he needed a pre-determined amount of money to start his business. Even as the snow fell on Christmas eve, as others would have given up, he searched the town looking for sponsors. Late at night, he saw a window with a light on, so he entered and spoke to the man inside, coming away with the money that he needed. This man had ultimate focus on his goal and he succeeded.
When you write down a goal, you then need a plan to execute, so that the goal becomes a reality. Write down not only your goals but what you are willing to do, in order to meet them. Focus on not only the goal but alternative plans for backup.
Let's stick with the selling products business. Now selling on commission is a tough business to be in at any time. Yes, there are the very few, who thrive on making cold calls and huge commissions but for most of us, picking up the phone and making a call, gives us the shivers.
The question is, how bad do you want it? How focused are you on reaching your sales goals?
True sales professionals can make 60 plus cold calls a day. That is huge. However, the ones who have made the decision to have X number of sales, will do whatever it takes to get them. In this case, they would decide to leave the comfort of the office and go cold call in person. It is far more difficult for a gate keeper to turn someone away who is standing directly in front of them, then it is to dismiss a phone call.
The sales person has decided and now executed his plan. There was no turning back. It is the same as the leader who burns all his ships, so that his men must march forward to conquer the enemy.
At the end of the month, the salesman has done everything he can to meet his sales goals. However once everything is added up, he discovers that he has fallen short. Many people when they fall short on a goal, will immediately give up. They give up focus and they give up hope believing that the goal was too difficult and therefore cannot be reached.
Our salesman is of a very different mind. He sits down with a pen and paper and tracks what he did over the month. He focuses on how many calls he made over the telephone, how many appointments he got and from there he decides how many more calls per day he needs next month to reach his goals. By measuring what he did and what the outcome was, he now is much closer to making his goals come true 100%.
Focus on what your goals are, then decide, execute, and measure for absolute success.