Step 4 - Execute

Execute your plan, or as Nike says "Just do it", or get off your haunches and get it done.  Do something even if you don't know what you are doing, at least if you are trying, you will learn something by default.

If there was a study done on plans that have never been executed compared to the number of plans that have been made, you would see that a very high percentage of the plans, well over 75%, were never implemented, or even started.  

Why is that, "in action" constipation?  You have done it and I have done it.  We make great plans, and feel good about those plans, but some were between the euphoria of conceiving the idea and implementing the idea, something great was lost.  To get past this, we must just "start", just do something in the direction of your plan.  It is sort of like falling forward.  Instead of falling backward as you are moving towards the completion of a plan when you hit a road block, decide to "fall forward".  Yes, make the mistake, but lean from it, therefore because you learned from it, you are falling forward as you fall.

So many people are afraid of failing that they never start.  But look at some of our greatest inventors, Alexander Gram Bell and Henry Ford.  In making their awesome achievements, they failed many times, but instead of giving up and "falling backward", they learned from their mistakes and "fell forward".

I call this falling forward, a form of verbal sparing, where you learn from your mistakes.  Below is an example of learning from your mistakes by using verbal sparing in the sales process: 

Verbal Sparring:
I enjoy martial arts. I’ve taken several different styles.  I’m not really great at it; I’m just sort of a connoisseur of it I guess.  And I have done both styles where it was full contact sparing and those where you pulled your punches.  And I realized that I ended up not learning much in the martial arts styles where you pull your punches.  Because when you pull your punches you really didn’t get what it felt like to take a punch or to take a kick or to block a kick or a punch and keep your center of gravity, keep your balance.  But when you were in full contact, now you’re all suited up you’ve got your protective gear and it hurts a little bit more.  But the thing was my body would learn how to center itself, how to stay balanced when it was taking a punch or blocking a punch etc.  You see it was learning in the real environment.  And that’s the same with sales is that the best way to learn sales, is the real deal and the real situation with real prospects of real concerns and real objections and real needs.

Therefore, I came up with the term verbal sparing that I’ve taught sales people throughout the sales teams that I’ve built, and it is the number one technique for learning from your mistakes.  People seem to dread mistakes but understand that what you learn from mistakes you don’t forget.  You can read about something 100 times, but when you make a mistake you remember that mistake. 

I used to be a person who would just totally beat up myself when I made a mistake.  I remember when I was first building my direct sales business, I’d go and do appointments at peoples homes and businesses, and occasionally when I’d go for the follow up appointment I would remember a very important point (which I forgot to say during the appointment) as I was driving off (what I now call delayed intelligence).

The point was; the information I forgot to share with the prospective client was often the very point that might have closed the sale (if I would have remembered it at the right time).  This used to make me so mad and frustrated at myself.  I would then beat up on myself, and I eventually realized that you can beat up on yourself better than anybody else can, because you can beat up on yourself twenty four seven.  If someone else says to you, “hey, you’re a jerk”, you can just say back to them “hey you’re a jerk” and ignore them.  But now think about it, if you tell yourself you’re a jerk what are you going to say back to yourself, “no, you’re a jerk”, you see it’s just not going to work.  So eventually, I decided is that I was only going to do what moves me forward, not backwards; and beating myself up was not moving myself forward, it was moving me backwards.  Therefore, what I decided to do instead was to learn from my mistakes.

Therefore, when I made mistakes after that point, I’d be driving in the car and remember a mistake I made, and I would be so mad and frustrated at myself, that I ended up having to yell at this top of my lungs in the car “Terry did you learn something from the mistake that you just made?” Then I would answer myself by yelling back “Yes”.  Then I would ask myself ” Terry are you going to do something different in the future as a result of what you’ve just learned?”  Again, I would answer myself “Yes”. Lastly, I would say back to myself “Good then it was a positive thing, learn from it and move on”.  This may sound strange, but it worked, and as a result I started to lean from my mistakes. 

The point here is, get started even if you do not know everything you think that you need to know.  Remember, you will learn the rest by doing it and falling forward.

As part of my coaching with you, I will be helping you to maximize what you learn from your mistakes, and I will focus on keeping you moving forward even if you don't know everything you feel you need to know.  I will help you learn by doing.