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NorthStar Performance Partners, LLC | Minneapolis, MN

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As adults, we are often taught to never give mental recognition to the possibility of failure. You must succeed, be a winner, to lose is not an option. While these are positive mindsets the fact is they’re not always realistic in the real world.

Please understand that I am not suggesting that you go out with the intention of failing. What I am saying is that failure is part of the learning experience. In the real world, the road to success is lined with failures. Ask anyone who has been successful.

We see successful people and think how lucky they are. The fact is we don’t see the failures that strengthened their gut system and taught the lessons that lead to their success. Michael Jordan once said, “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Sales professionals face failure on a daily basis. Take prospecting: more often than not, you’re going to be rejected. No one has a 100% success rate when making dials. What is your mindset around this “failure?” If your goal is to make a sale every time you pick up the phone to call a prospect, then failure is inevitable. If your goal is to make your dials and count doing your behaviors as a win, then the unsuccessful calls are easier to swallow.

If we can understand that failure is part of growth and understand how the process works, maybe we can begin to risk and at the same time lessen the impact on our psyche in the event that we experience failure.

David Sandler said, “Sales is no place to get your needs met, but too often salespeople get their needs met by eagerly jumping through the hoops their prospect puts down, not for the chance at getting an order, but because they want their prospect to like them.”

Failing is never fun. However, that is not a reason to destroy goals, dreams, or game plans. Understand that failures become learning and strengthening systems for you. Take some risks for greater gain. Without risk and failure, there is no growth. 

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