- Limited time to work. On average a "very good" salesperson works 57.5 hours a week, only slightly less than the 63.2 hours for a "very good" CEO...most of whom are what? Salespeople!
- Limited time to sleep. I guess that there is still a rule of thumb that the average adult needs eight hours, but there are those of us who have gotten by just fine, thank you, for decades on four or five, and last night on three.
- Limited time to live. 'Nuff said about that depressing note, since today I chose to "Be Happy!"
A beautiful happy day here in Boston having finally shrugged off the ugliness of a cold wet spring to now bask in the excitement of the startup capital of the world. Just a great day to be alive..."and sell some stuff"
Be happy, or be upset?
As salespeople and as entrepreneurs, or even better...as salespeople in startup companies...every single day we have an opportunity to make a deliberate choice- Happy! or Upset?
Too many salespeople, it would appear to me, just don't make that deliberate decision every day and end up...BANG!...falling right into the rapid rhythm of the day at 7:30 and letting themselves get caught up in the maelstrom of the flow of business and never making a deliberate decision as to what does it take to be happy today?
Sounds simple, but it's not, but then it really doesn't take that much time to make that single deliberate decision. It just needs to be a stated and vocalized deliberate decision. Say it out loud, softly and to yourself a total of seven times, and just maybe while you're meditating tomorrow.
Here's 3 Ideas to Practice being happy today
The key word above is "practice", which means that you need to work at this every day as a process (just like everything else in the "Science of Sales") until it becomes your own religion in your way of thinking and acting about your own state of being happy.
- Spend 15 minutes every morning mediating!
Every workday morning, I'm on the treadmill at 5:15 for 20-30 minutes followed by weights and 15 minutes of yoga, stretching and meditating. I have no idea if I meditate or even practice yoga "the right way". All I know is that it works for me. My own rhythm and my quiet asking three questions of myself always leads to my reaffirming my own strength and my self-worth. What that 15 minutes of time in an 18 hour day does is that it wires together all of the very positive neural connections that both push and pull me through every day.
- Every day, listen to music!
Maybe you won't be whistling along to Bobby McFerrin's late '80's hit of "Don't Worry, Be Happy" , but I defy anyone not be caught up in the finger-drumming, toe-tapping and breakout dancing of Pharrell Williams' Happy Song.
I have a long commute which is the price of living on the NH beach, and, as a result I schedule all of my intro business calls and most of my student calls. But when the traffic is more bumper to bumper wicked than usual, like yesterday, and I've already listened to Bloomberg-CNN-MSNBC for the 10th time, I just run up and down my Sirius XM music presets from '60's rock to top 40 pop and everything in between. Nothing sets up or finishes the day for me like the rhythm of music... and it makes me happy!
- Hang out with Happy People!
As entrepreneurs and as salespeople, we have enough challenges in our day-to-day in order to make quota, build deeper relationships brick by brick, hire top talent, and 50 other tasks that needed to be finished by today, the first day of June and the last selling days of the quarter. What we don't need around us at this, or any time, are negative people.
Just leave behind the naysayers, the complainers and the woe-is-me-and-the-world-people, and start hanging out with people who inoculate you with their sense of winning, their ability to knock down walls, their frenetic urgency and often times, their craziness. These are the men and women who think differently. They create roads which don't even go to anything that even resembles a box, let alone try to break out of an already existing box.
Don't know these people?
Sure you do, they're the business and social entrepreneurs that abound by the thousands in Boston.
Don't have time to actually "hang out" with them?
Okay, I get that you're busy, which is why we have an opportunity in our entrepreneurship classes at Tufts for you to engage with exciting, highly-skilled and well-experienced teams of students to undertake a semester-long Sales project for this fall semester. Plus, these young women and men are very happy to have the privilige of learning and working in real life companies on real life Sales projects.
Content in Context
Each semester I teach a Marketing course and a "Science of Sales" course. I've been teaching now for 11 years at Tufts and 20 at MIT, and I realize that in order to bring those "real life" Marketing and Sales skills to our students, the best way to do that is to develop those skills within the context of having to deliver complex Marketing and Sales plans over the period of 13 weeks.
Right now, my Marketing course has a complete compliment of six projects, but we have four openings in the Sales course. My peer professor, Gavin Finn, also teaches marketing and Gavin may have a need for additional projects in his course.
There are also another 14 professors in our Entrepreneurship Center, and we are always looking of real-life projects in leadership, research, finance and other disciplines.
If you are interested in learning more about our Sales projects for this fall, just email me at email@example.com, and I'll send you over the instruction sheets complete with the background of what we do and the dates for the fall.
Have a HAPPY ! weekend!
Coach & Advisor to Derby Management
Director, Entrepreneurial Studies, Tufts University
Cummings Family Professor of Entrepreneurship