For most salespeople, no matter how actively you manage your book of business, Q4 can be a challenging time of year with a push to meet or exceed goals, close those last few key deals, fill unexpected gaps, support the team in achieving its goals – all while maintaining strong client and internal relationships – and often while dealing with profit margin pressure and client budget cuts and strategy changes.
To navigate those challenges, in addition to understanding and actively managing your book of business, you also need to understand and actively manage your physiology – using Physical Intelligence. Physical Intelligence techniques have consistently had a positive impact on sales results – one sales team improved the quality of their deals by 12.5% after just three months applying Physical Intelligence techniques.
Like an athlete who has qualified in heats and now faces competing in the final, the fear of not achieving a personal best at the last hurdle can make us think, feel, speak and behave differently than at other times of the year. The body and brain are influenced by the chemistry of uncertainty and threat.
For women as well as men, testosterone levels drop reducing that ebullient confidence that surrounds us during the first half of the year. Base line cortisol rises, nudging anxiety levels up, and dopamine levels drop reducing enjoyment. We feel tighter, we have less fun and we can become isolated.
Here’s what to do:
Reboot testosterone: When testosterone is too low, you are likely to be in denial, crossing your fingers and hoping for the best, feeling like a victim of circumstance, rather than taking charge and rising to the challenge.
Use your posture and your memory to boost your confidence. Remember how you felt when you achieved success in the past? Recreate this feeling in relation to a specific past event whilst you open and expand your body into a ‘winner pose;’ (make a star-fish shape with the whole body – legs and arms stretched out). Do this every morning for 20 seconds – whilst the kettle is boiling or after cleaning your teeth. It will boost your testosterone levels.
Check cortisol: When cortisol is high, you are likely to try too hard, take risks with client relationships, go into overdrive sending late night and early morning email, feeling anxious and like you will never be able to do enough.
Use breathing technique: This is not the moment to start holding your breath. Instead use deep in breaths and longer outbreaths to ensure carbon dioxide, a toxin, leaves the lungs. Use whilst travelling – 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes in the evening.
Drive dopamine up: When dopamine is low, you will feel a lack of motivation, see no light at the end of the tunnel, and you may feel you have already lost the fight. Thoughts like –‘ I haven’t got what it takes’, ‘I’m already exhausted…how am I going to achieve this,? ‘This is a hopeless situation’, ‘What if I don’t make it?’, will come into your mind. You won’t be having much fun, that’s for sure.
Turn threat into challenge, and get ready to test your endurance. Increase your fitness regime by adding one or two repetitions – this will give you more energy and determination, eat healthily, sleep well, low alcohol intake. Use your creativity to review your plan of action. Repeat sales behavior that has worked for you in the past, but do more of it. For the next few months, persistence and consistency are the name of the game. Create routine. Organise rewards: treats on a Sunday, time away to refuel, etc. – then calmly, work really hard all week. Stack everything you achieve up as a success, including new leads that you can use for next year, so you always feel rewarded for your efforts.
Augment oxytocin: When oxytocin, the social bonding and trust chemical, is low, you may feel isolated, with the responsibility of achieving that bonus weighing heavily on you and family relying on you whilst the organisation judges your performance. It is easy to forget to manage expectations, reach out for support or have the confidence to call in favours.
Augment oxytocin by continuing to put the client’s interests first – despite your own needs; keep doing the right thing by people. Talk to others rather than shut down. Lighten up, laugh, remember you are alive and hopefully in good health, appreciate others help and support. Use your network to support your resilience at this time.
Get your Physical Intelligence working for you, and go for the goal!
About Companies In Motion
Transforming how organizations learn and engage, Companies In Motion (CIM) supports you and your organisation’s overall performance.
Many organizations are moving away from the traditional Performance Management models to something more innovative and meaningful. In response to this change, Learning and Development teams are implementing Physical Intelligence programs that support performance across the curriculum: leadership, innovation, change management, team building, sales, negotiating, and more.
Contact CIM for more information on how Physical Intelligence can support performance across your company.
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