As a kid, my dad used to make me watch the ’70s Kung Fu classic “Enter the Dragon” with him whenever it was on TV. “Bruce Lee is a bad dude,” he’d say. “Nobody wants to mess with Bruce Lee!”
He was right. Even by Hollywood action movie standards, Bruce Lee was amazing. Despite standing just 5’ 7” and without an ounce of fat on his bones, he had an intimidating presence. But combined with his strength, speed, agility, discipline and zen-like focus under pressure, he was a true force to be reckoned with. The bad guys never had a chance!
Today I know it will never be me out there defeating scores and scores of bad guys in some sort of battle royale. But as a writer for a sales performance blog, it occurred to me: Surely there are teachings here for salespeople to unleash the sales dragon within — for dominating like the master Bruce Lee.
And with that, here are 6 tips for unleashing your sales performance dragon:
1. Train hard.
Think Bruce Lee became as fit, fast and strong as he did without consistently conditioning his body and mastering his skills? Think again!
Sales is no different. You have to work out those sales muscles to get them into top form. Practice pitching, role playing, tonality, objection responses and just flat out having conversations as much as possible, and you’ll tone up those sales muscles and be ready for any situation.
2. Take time to get focused.
Bruce Lee would never just step into the ring or engage some bad guys without getting focused first. He was always prepared mentally for what he had to do.
There’s no telling what kind of challenges you might face in a sale, so you have to be sharp, focused and ready to adapt to anything. One way you can get your mind ready to sell is by imagining the sale before it happens. Take a few minutes before a sales call or meeting and just imagine the interaction; imagine yourself giving the pitch, reacting to the buyer and even closing. It’ll give you the confidence and frame of mind needed to sell at a high level.
3. Target pain points.
Good fighters identify their opponent’s weaknesses and attack them. Your potential customers aren’t actually opponents and you better not attack them, but there’s some good wisdom in this approach, nonetheless.
Focus on asking great discovery questions early in the process to uncover the buyer’s pain points and focus your approach on how you can help with those. Just like a fighter, trying to attack where a buyer is strong doesn’t make sense, whereas attacking their pain points with your sales pitch makes it much harder to resist.
4. Stay calm, cool & collected.
How do you take down all sorts of weapon-wielding bad guys at a time without hardly breaking a sweat? By staying calm, cool and collected in the moment, that’s how.
There will be times during sales conversations when it seems like the whole deal is about to go up in flames. It’s at those times when salespeople need to be at their best by staying calm, cool and holding it all together to work through those challenges and come out with a win.
5. Persevere through obstacles.
It happened to Bruce Lee time and time again. After defeating one or two bad guys, suddenly dozens, even hundreds more appeared seemingly out of thin air. What looked like a sure victory suddenly turned into a dire struggle. Think Bruce Lee would just give up with the odds against him? No way!
Closing a sale can feel exactly like that. There are those times when you’ve seemingly worked through every objection, crossed every T and dotted every I, but suddenly there’s a whole new set of obstacles that appear before you can get even close to the finish line. It’s just then when you need to unleash your inner sales dragon, and take out those obstacles one by one until emerging the victor.
6. Go for the win!
When it was time to finish off an opponent, you’d never see Bruce Lee hesitate, and he never missed an opportunity that presented itself.
Likewise, when you’re working a sale and you feel the opportunity is right, don’t hesitate to go in for the win. Salespeople sometimes struggle in this area because it can be difficult to ask for a signature. But, the thing is, typically if you miss a good chance to secure the deal, it doesn’t get any easier. New objections can suddenly surface, and there are all new challenges to overcome. That’s why, when the time is right, you can’t miss your chance to get it done.
Are you ready to unleash your sales performance dragon? Keep these tips in mind and you just might be. But, be careful! With great power comes great responsibility, and channeling your inner sales dragon might unleash sales powers beyond anything you’ve ever seen. Use wisely.