Exceptional Personal Performance

Exceptional personal performance is something that can be learnt and with practice can change not only your work performance but your life too! It’s often more to do with unlearning and relearning, breaking down old habits and chaning yourself belief as well as giving you the tools to make it all happen.

Did you know that really successful people, in all fields of business are in fact great procrastinators?

Because they are great at putting things off and just not doing stuff. So how can that make them successful you might think?

Here’s why…

They ONLY put off doing those tasks or actions that are either ‘low pay-off’ items or are not in alignment with their goals.

This isn’t of course the usual type of procrastination whereby you say things like “I’ll do it later” or “I’ll leave it until I’ve got the time” as that’s not going to make you successful. And what you DON’T want to do is to put off the tasks that are ‘high pay-off’ items and leading towards your goals.

And if you’re someone who is suffering from lack of time then you need to examine what is really urgent and what is really important – there is a difference.

Action Points:

  1. If you do not have some goals – set some right now!
  2. If you have a business plan but its not up to date – update it.
  3. Decide what is urgent and what is important and write a list of things to do.
  4. Cross off or delegate everything that doesn’t take you towards your goals.
  5. Avoid procrastinating on important actions and do those right now. It’s amazing where an hour of focused time will take you!

What Are Your Road Blocks?

We all have them … that is, road blocks to personal and business growth. However, we have to identify them first before we can begin to overcome them. But overcome them we must … otherwise we won’t grow to achieve whatever it is we’re aspiring to.

What are roadblocks?

Roadblocks can be many things and appear in different situations. They can be recognized through the words you’re using, your daily actions or inactions. They are basically excuses. Excuses you’re giving yourself for not achieving success or getting that breakthrough you want for your business.

How many times do you hear yourself saying, ‘it’s the economy,’ ‘people just aren’t investing in my type of product or service at the moment,’ or ‘everything I do is different for a client and therefore I’m the only person who can do this.’ I’ve got to tell you that … none of this is true!

They are all road blocks which you have created for yourself. It is only you who believes them to be true. For instance, we all know that there are ups and downs in the economy. We all know that fashions or trends fade. It happens now and it has always happened throughout history. We also know that for many people who choose to think differently, that this gives us more opportunity to grow. We might need to change something we’re doing or create offers that will attract people by giving them more value. Either way, it’s all about changing your mindset.

How do you do that?

Start by identifying what your roadblocks are. Write these down. Then when you have done that, identify why you think in that way. Write that down. And then identify the emotion behind that thinking. Write that down. And finally, ask yourself what you can do to overcome these road blocks. Then take the action necessary to overcome and move beyond where you are now.

Let me give you a couple of examples:

Example One:
My road block is ‘I hate writing proposals as they take so much of my time. However, it’s only me that can do them because every single client is different.’

Is this true? No, of course it isnt! We know from the old 80/20 rule that almost 80 percent of what you do for clients will be very similar work. It is only about 20 percent that will differ. If you were to look at every single piece of work or job you have completed for any number of clients then you would see that most of what you do is very similar. Yes, there will be some differences but in the main, it will be very similar. So, you could make writing your proposals much easier and quicker. It is only your mindset that is preventing you from doing that.

And what about the emotion that is keeping your thinking in that mindset? It’s likely to be a fear of letting go incase you lose control. This might stem from either a past bad experience where this happened, or it might be a fear of not being able to look as through you are giving your clients the personal service you’ve told them they might expect. It might also be a lack of confidence in your ability to fulfill everything you say you will. Or it could even be a fear of not remembering each step of the process – so just incase you miss something out if you didn’t meticulously write it all down for that particular client. Hint: a check list or a mind map is just as good and takes much less time. Either way, it’s time to let this thinking go …

What is it that you can do to make change so that you can work more efficiently?

Example Two:
My roadblock is that in the current economy people are just not buying my sort of product or service.

Is this true? No, of course it isn’t. People buy when they have a need or want for the product or service that will make things easier for them or to make them wealthier, healthier or happier – regardless of the economy. Yes, people may be more choosy where they spend their money … but they will still spend it somewhere … and it might as well be with you … if only you change your mindset.

And what about the emotion that is keeping your thinking in that mindset? In most cases it is a fear-based emotion tied to a belief somewhere in your sales process. Or it might be a lack of knowledge in how to make sales in any economy. It might be a combination of things. Either way, the information to do that is out there … if you want it.

If you can first of all identify your road blocks, and then the thinking and emotional attachment fueling your roadblock, then you will be in a far better position to be able to overcome and move beyond them. Isn’t it time you stopped holding yourself back?

Expectations. We all have them whether it’s an expectation we’ve placed on ourselves or the expectation we have of the obligations others have for us. Either way, when that expectation is not fulfilled then we feel as if we’ve been let down.

But is the obligation we’ve placed on ourselves justified? For instance, how many people do you know who feel as if they must fulfill certain tasks or routines such as visiting parents on a Sunday, or act in a certain way that their partner, their parents or their friends will feel let down?

Obligation becomes a challenge to us when we feel tied to the script we’ve set for ourselves. Sometimes it’s necessary to ask yourself why do I feel obligated to do this? And what does the other person ultimately expect of me? If you’re not sure then ask them. In most cases, obligation is something we’ve set for ourselves based on our own beliefs rather than the other person’s, who’s idea of what is expected might be totally different to your way of thinking.

Often the reality is that the other persons you feel obligated to aren’t even thinking about any of this at all. They will be much more flexible in their way of thinking.

In doing so, and letting go some of those obligations and changing how you think and feel about them, you will be re-gaining your strength and inner-power.

Article by: Wendy Howard
Join me www.twitter.com/wendyhoward & www.linkedin.com/in/spiritofvenus

What Is Your Net Selling Time?

Research shows that most people put 80 to 90 percent of their time presenting and demonstrating their products and services to others. After all, that’s the most enjoyable part of doing business.

The problem with this is that it only leaves 10 to 20 percent of time for other things. And sales guru Tom Hopkins says, “champions on the other hand, spend only 40 percent of their time presenting or demonstrating, and no more than 10 percent prospecting”. He goes on to say, “some champions spend no time at all prospecting because referrals keep them busy”.

Let’s also be clear on what he means by ‘champions’. When he refers to ‘champions’, he means the top 10 percent of the sales force in terms of income and production, and also that they have made training and techniques an important part of their success.

Where do they spend the rest of their time?

They spend about 50 percent of their time working on the vital areas of qualifying and planning. This totals up to their net selling time – that is, the total amount of working time remaining after the trade shows and company meetings are attended, the routine paperwork is done and the old accounts are serviced.

What does this mean?

Well, it means that the champions spend half as much time demonstrating and presenting as the average salesperson does, yet the champion still manages to turn in at least twice the volume – actually it’s a lot more than that, it’s between four and ten times as much as the average sales person will.

What is this huge difference but down to?

Well, it’s not to do with their confidence in presenting or demonstrating. It is however to do with the champions attention to and ability to planning sales, at selecting and qualifying the right people to sell to, at overcoming objections, closing, and at deserving and obtaining referrals.

ALL are vital – you must be competent in all major areas of selling before you can realize your full potential and become a champion sales person.

So, where do you spend most of your time in your business?

How are your planning skills?

What is your strategy for selecting and qualifying the right people to sell to?

How skilled are you at overcoming objections?

And closing?

How deserving are you?

How many referrals do you receive?

How many referrals do you give to others?

If you’re not making the sales you want to then something has to change. And a great starting point is where champion sales people spend a majority of their time. They are constantly mastering training and sales techniques to become successful.

Article: By Wendy Howard. Visit www.spiritofvenus.co.uk and view our powerful sales programme G.R.O.W. Giant Results, Opportunities and Wealth.

There’s A Difficult Way To Success And An Easy One – Which One Have You Chosen?

Okay, let’s see, the difficult one is to study hard for a long time, work hard for 60 hours or more a week for several decades, worry about the impression you’re giving out to others and claw your way up the corporate ladder. The price of this route is to sacrifice your pleasant life now for a pleasant life in the future. In other words, you are working your socks off now to try and achieve extraordinary things for an extraordinary future.

Isn’t it time you made that mental leap and started to work with a different mindset? You can do this by focusing on the outcomes that you want and find the easiest way to them using the least effort without sacrificing anything and actual enjoy the journey.

Sound good? Then here’s how to do it;

1. Concentrate on what gives extraordinary results without extraordinary efforts. It’s the old 80/20 rule again whereby 80% of your results come form only 20% of your efforts.

2. Over 80% of people struggle to achieve 20% of results. Whereas 20% of people reap 80% of the results. So look at these people and see what it is that they do differently.

3. 80% of the value you give to others comes from only 20 percent of what you do. What is it that gives people most value and how can you concentrate on delivering this to more people?

4. What behaviours have you adopted as part of your life? 80% of what you want comes from 20% of your tactics or your behaviours. Observe what behaviour is bringing in the best results.

5. For everything that you do there will be one way that is markedly superior in bringing in the results your want. Once you work this out you will have a found a way that if four times better than it was before.

Article by Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus.
www.spiritofvenus.co.uk & www.grow-training.com

An Essential Guide To Constructive Criticism

In a world of put me downs or taking things personally, what has happened to healthy criticism? Here’s the essential guide on how to give it, and how to take it.

Here’s how to give constructive criticism:

1. Check out your motive. Is it to help the person rather than one of self interest? Will it improve their performance and make their job or life easier?
If not, then don’t give it.

2. Don’t criticise the person’s character. Focus on the specifics and keep it impersonal such as ‘yesterday I noticed that one of the jobs was left
undone after everyone had gone home and I believe the responsibility lies within your remit’.

3. Make effort to understand the person and what it was they were trying to do. Try to find out why. This gives you a different perspective on the

4. Phrase it positively if possible. Rather than focussing on their poor performance, try to focus on ways they can improve their performance.

5. Always make it a personal ‘one to one’ conversation which is out of ear-shot of anyone else. Don’t humiliate or embarrass the person by saying
anything openly or in front of others.

Here’s how to take it:

1. Thank the person for giving you the criticism. It is always hard for someone to give criticism or to be brave enough to actually give you any
negative feedback.

2. Don’t get defensive. Ask them to tell you more and seek clarification. This is to make sure you understand but also so that the other person
acknowledges you’ve heard what it is that they’ve said. Enter into a dialogue with the person to resolve the issue.

3. Be authentic. If you feel it’s unfair criticism say so. If you feel crushed by it then tell the other person how it’s made you feel.

4. Take time to think it through before you react. Ask yourself whether you agree or disagree with the criticism. Why might you have come across this
way to the other person? It is entirely up to you whether you decide to accept the criticism or not. You still have that choice regardless of the

5. Take it as a compliment. The person has been good enough to take their time to give you some free feedback. Turn this around and view it as a

Article by: Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus, www.spiritofvenus.co.uk & www.grow-training.com

If you want to influence more, keep these in mind:

1: Want a favour? Then do a favour.
Generally, if you do someone a good turn they will want to return it. So offer to water the plants while your neighbour goes on holiday or look after their children for a couple of hours after school – then ask a favour in return.

2: We’re persuaded by people we like 
Who are you most likely to want to help if they ask you to? The person you like or the person who walks by without saying good morning? We put ourselves out for people we like. It’s a little bit strange this one as one study showed that waiters in restaurants were given a 20 percent more in tips if they gave diners additional mints with their coffee, while telling them what nice people they were.

3: Start small.
In other words don’t go in straight away and ask for them to look after you dog for a month while you go to sunny Florida. Similarly, when it comes to getting commitment from someone to do business with you, then ask them to do something small first such as completing a short survey to assess their needs and wants or by keeping to an arranged telephone call to answer questions. If someone isn’t prepared to do something small and keep to that arrangement, then they certainly won’t keep to any bigger arrangements either.

4: Use the Power Word!
The word you need to here is ‘YES’. When people are asked to opt-in or commit to something in writing then they are much more likely to turn up or do the good deed for you.

5: Group think.
We all like to know that other people are involved and to feel part of a group before committing ourselves. One survey on how we think in groups found that when one person was asked to stare at the stars in the sky, passers by ignored what he was doing. However, when a group of people were asked to look at the stars in the sky passers by began to notice and ask questions as to what they were doing. If most people decide on a particular course of action, we feel more comfortable doing it too.

6: Fear of Loss.
This is a great motivator to get people to take action as the fear of loss is very powerful. When we see bargains such as ‘when it’s gone it’s gone’ we tend to rush in and grab it. Similarly, if you were to ask your partner to take you on holiday to that wonderful hotel in the south of France or you’ll be very disappointed, then its likely they will buy into the idea of returning.

7: Denial is easier.
Just pointing out the consequences to someone without giving them the remedy rarely works. It’s a lot easier to deny its happening than it is to face up to any need to change. Warning someone about the consequences of drugs, alcohol, smoking or weight loss rarely works as when people are not given the remedy they will prefer to live in denial. Giving someone the information to join a weightloss programme or a stop smoking now group and leaving it for the person to sign in for themselves works much better.

8: Best and worst times for making decisions.
We make decisions all of the time and if we’re tired or stressed we can make a wrong decision very easily. Similarly, if we are feeling upset, angry, tearful, unhappy or any of those negative emotions we can make a mistake. If we’re happy and having fun with a crowd we can easily go forward with something that we will regret later. So become aware of your emotions when making decisions and take the time to think it through logically.

9: Because …
This is an interesting piece of research on people queuing up to use a photo-copier as when a stranger asked if they could jump the queue, only 60 percent of people agreed to this. However, when the stranger used the magic word ‘because’ and gave an explanation as to why they wanted to use the photocopier and jump the queue, 90 percent of people agreed to it. Strangely enough, people don’t even listen to the reason either!

So have fun using these and see what outcome you get compared to how you’d normally try to influence others.

To learn how to authentically sell go to www.grow-training.com
Article by: Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus, www.spiritofvenus.co.uk & www.grow-training.com

Do You Have These Roadblocks Too?

One of the most common roadblocks I run into is latching onto external excuses too tightly as a way of getting around the lack of success in sales. I mean excuses such as, ‘it’s the economy,’ ‘people don’t want this right now,’ ‘they have their mind elsewhere during difficult times,’ those sort of limp excuses are simply roadblocks!
Because there are many businesses that not only grow during times of recession but actually thrive because of the recession. The truth is that the more problems people have, the more likely they are to buy into the solution you’re offering to them.

So stop buying into your own story by giving yourself these excuses. It’s more a case of having to change your marketing to move with the current times. And when people have an objection to your product or services it is rarely if ever based on your price. It is based on their not having seen the ‘value’ in your offer to justify the price you’re asking.

So when things are tough in the economy what people want to see is better value for what they are buying. People will still be spending their money on something regardless of any economy. The shops are still full of eager shoppers and the increase of online purchasers is still rising at a phenomenal rate – so people are still buying but … they want to see more value in whatever it is that they are receiving.

So how do you demonstrate more value? Here’s a few ideas:
• Add a bonus and tell them how much it’s worth – spell it out.
• Give them even more additional bonuses!
• A 100% iron-cast money back guarantee (builds trust by making it risk-free)
• Try free for 30 days
• Try free for 60 days
• Try a free month’s subscription
• Package your offer – again, spell it out in financial terms demonstrating the value of your offer and how
much they save with a package.
• Give a free appraisal
• Offer a free gift
• Give something immediately such as a free e-book

There are lots of ways that individual businesses can demonstrate more value and bring in customers – even in the toughest times.

Best wishes

Wendy Howard

Want to learn how to authentically sell? Go here now: www.grow-training.com
Article by: Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus, www.spiritofvenus.co.uk, www.grow-training.com

Are you one of those people who are already very skilled in what you do, infact you’re probably at the top of your game but … still not getting the financial rewards you want?

If this is you then there’s a problem with your congruency with your product or service and that of selling it to the very people who need it the most. And that problem lies in your thinking … or rather how you think about selling.

Historically, sales has always held some sort of negative-stigma to it because it’s often been associated with being bad, cheating someone out of something or getting one over on somebody else. And I’m sure like myself you’ve probably had some bad experiences around sales too whereby someone has sold you something and it’s not turned out to be what you thought it was. It might have been poor value, not done what is said on the tin or when you tried to take it back the salesperson refused to give you a refund or simply wasn’t there at all!

All of the negative messages you receive at some point in your life have come about by a bad sales experience or that of someone close to you. But I’ve got to tell you that is NOT what sales is about.

True sales is being of service to the very people you KNOW will benefit from your products and services. In fact, you are doing them a disservice by not offering them the very thing that will be helpful to them. But there lies another problem … they don’t know that your product or service is the very thing that will help them.

And this is where true sales skills come in because you need to be able to be in a position whereby you can educate them into how your products and services will benefit them. To do that you need to dig deeper into their problem by asking them questions while you match up what will be the best solution for them. While at the same time you diminish their fears around being sold something that might not work, will cause them a problem with their boss or loved ones or any feelings of fear about the decision they’re making or being cheated in some way.

Of course it will take some time for you to become confident and competent in selling authentically in this way. Your emotions will still come up to the surface as to whether of not you’re enjoying the sales experience but eventually you will break through and start to enjoy sales. Because sales really is all about great customer service and giving an experience of what your offer is and how it can help them. After all, don’t you want to make their life or their business just a little bit easier for them? Don’t you want to help them make the right decision rather than falling into the hands of someone who’s unscrupulous and not as interested in their well-being as you are? I’m sure you do.

To learn more about how to master the skills of selling go to: www.grow-training.com and discover the No.1 sales skill of all.
Article by: Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus, www.spiritofvenus.co.uk, www.grow-training.com

So, What Does It Take To Be Good At Sales?

If you’re someone who’s either confused at selling or have already undertaken numerous sales training courses but still can’t get the results you want, then you are not alone.

Sometimes its just that part of the puzzle is missing and you haven’t been given all the missing ingredients to make it in sales.

But why is sales so important? Because without it you won’t have a business for long as it really is the lifeblood necessary to grow. Without selling, you merely have a hobby-and an expensive one at that!

So what are the ingredients to become good in sales? You need to become in a number of areas:

• Strategy – setting up a strategy that works for you and your particular business. It might be that you need various strategies for the different products and services you want to offer.

• Personality – knowing your particular sales personality is hugely beneficial as you will be able to play to your unique strengths when in the sales situation. It will allow you to become comfortable in sales and to develop a sales style that works for you.

• Authenticity – in everything you do. Being honest about your products and services and authentic in everything you do.

• Be true to yourself – in choosing the right sales techniques and tactics that you feel comfortable with. If you’re not happy in sales or trying to sell in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable then it won’t work and you won’t do it. So choosing a style that allows you to be true to yourself is very important.

• Overcome obstacles and hurdles – sometimes hidden in your subconscious. You need to dig deep to uncover what is blocking you and stopping you from moving forward.

• Re-connecting with your passion and reason ‘why’ – sometimes it’s easy to forget why you went into business doing what you’re doing. At these times you need to go back and reignite the flame and desires you had. At times this is reminding yourself of why you’ve chosen a particular path because the reason isn’t necessarily your business in itself.

• Re-programming – your negative thoughts and replacing them with positive ones that will help you in any sales situation. And to slay any demons or dragons hidden in your closet!

• Sales skills – and learn some authentic selling skills as they will really help you set out a step-by-step process to overcome any fears or doubts you have.

So start today by making a decision to do something about selling more than you currently are. How about doubling your sales income? How about trebling your sales income? Wit h the right mindset, sales skills and experience you can do that easily – the first part is making the decision to want to improve and learn what’s necessary to become great at sales.

To learn how to authentically sell go to www.grow-training.com
Article by: Wendy Howard, Spirit of Venus, www.spiritofvenus.co.uk & www.grow-training.com