There's a small line delineating success and failure, and often times success can be reached by simply following through and pushing through thresholds. More often, though it tends to be a combination of violating one of the top ten reasons or a combination of them below.
There are tons of reasons for failure, and this list is in no way the end-all, be-all list. They are however, the top 10 reasons why I see people failing more than any other collection of reasons.
- Never followed through completely - you can't win if you stop short of the finish line.
- You're afraid to pressure and demand of others what you really must demand of yourself.
- Lack of belief and conviction in yourself, your company and your value offerings.
- Not willing to accept full responsibility for every area of your life.
- Poor judgement when sizing up what's truly required to succeed.
- Having realistic expectations. You set yourself up to be demotivated when you do this.
- Failing to plan every area of your life equally. You can't be a little pregnant. Go all in or not at all.
- Not a strong enough positive mental attitude. Stop letting others negative crap inside you.
- Misjudging hurdles and not planning for the inevitable.
- Failing to constantly up your game through seminars, reading and learning.
You can succeed if you're willing to put the work in. After working with thousands of professionals each year, from all walks of life, I'd have to be an idiot not to recognize why a small percentage succeed and most fail. The reasons are obvious, and this list easily covers overwhelmingly why most fail.
Read this list, study this list, and look deep inside of yourself to find which of these 10 are causing you to not get what you want.
If you really want something in life, you absolutely must commit to going for it 1000%. You must live, eat, sleep, breath, be willing to die to get what you want. Watch this video and enjoy!
Our middle child, Carter, has an incredibly valuable lesson he can teach all professionals. It's the lesson of mastery.
You see, Carter is a passionate movie lover. He completely and totally immerses himself in the experience; acting out the scenes of the characters, reciting the lines as they happen and mimicking every move the actors make. Its as if he's apart of the movie. As proud parents, it's so amazing to watch him in action.
I asked him why he does it. His answer was simple. "I want to be just like them, so I pretend and do what they do."
How profoundly intelligent of a six year old. That begs the question, if a 6 year old can master a character, why don't adults do the same thing?
As professionals, many people have already paid the price and achieved great success in every profession. So what can we learn from a child watching movies and pretending to be the main character?
Well if you want the same results as someone else, here's my recommendation:
- seek out who is the absolute most successful in your chosen field
- find a way to connect with them - use LinkedIn, facebook, their website, their blog, seminar, event, anything that puts you in their line of sight. There's always a way if you're determined.
- Be humble and ask for their guidance or mentorship
- Buy them breakfast, lunch, a cup of coffee, or pay them for an hour of their time and pick their brain
- Create an outline to implement what you've learned - they have a success plan, use it
- copy and emulate them - drink what the drink, eat what the eat, model their behaviors and actions, plan the way they plan, prospect the way the prospect, and so on - whatever it is for your profession
If they can do it, heck if a six year old can do it, so can you. Commit to mastery. It's not hard if your passionate about your profession. It's serious fun, and nets you serious results!
There’s perhaps no greater skill that will get you ahead in life further than, listening. This presumes you’re asking the right questions of course, but for arguments sake let say you are.
I call it, practice not art, because to be an effective listener you must practice every day. Sadly it’s a skill most people fail miserably. Most are so focused on what they have to say or contribute that they fail to understand and relate to whoever is talking. It’s completely disrespectful and self centered.
Yet, effective listening does so much for you. It builds instant trust with others, because they can tell you are genuinely interested. You gain valuable insights, knowledge, skills, love, and respect. If you’re in sales effective listening reveals all the critical information necessary to build relationships, handle stalls and objections, and make deals happen. If you’re a parent or in a relationship, listening builds bridges of trust, rapport and love.
So how do you become a better listener? Practice these 7 strategies with every conversation and you will drastically improve your skills and your future.
- Give them your undivided attention. Put down the iphone, blackberry, cell phone, stop emailing, texting, and tweeting and pay attention.
- Look them in the eye
- Listen to understand and empathize, so you can put things in your own words
- Repeat back to them key points for clarification
- If you have something to contribute or ask, write it down so you don’t forget. But do not interrupt their train of thought
- Take notes, nod, acknowledge them
- When they’re done talking engage them with questions and your own insights
Follow these 7 strategies, and you’ll open up a world of respect, cause your success to happen easier, and build a more fulfilling future filled with rich and deep relationships and greater knowledge.
Ever hear the expression; “I’m a jack of all trades”? I cringe whenever I hear someone bragging about knowing everything. It’s obvious they’re not committed to excellence.
Being the jack of all trades is precisely the problem with the way most people attack their professions. They feel as though they have to know everything about everything related to their job. What ends up happening is that they become their own worst enemy. They are good at lots of things but have mastered none, and therefore never come close to reaching their full earnings or happiness potential. These people do 10,000 things 10 times.
On the other hand, the most highly successful people in any profession master the fundamentals. They focus their attention on doing the dozen or so core fundamentals 10,000 times. They master the core of their vocation that makes them exceed what would be considered the peak for most.
The best strategy for you is to go out and study the most successful leaders in your chosen field, and find out exactly what they are continually focusing on and mastering. There’s usually between 10 and 20 core strategies that, when mastered, sky-rocket their results.
The best part of is, their success is completely duplicatable. Learn from their mistakes. Learn their success strategies. Cut down the learning curve. Master what they continue focus on day-in and day-out.
Michael Jordan said it best when he talked about mastering the fundamentals being the secret to his success. Dribbling the ball on every square foot of the court, shooting tens of thousands of free throws, lay-ups, and jump shot from the exact spot every time. Everything begins with the fundamentals and branches out from there.
Standards, we all have them, and we all know they should govern every move in our lives. But how many of us actually have a written plan for how we are going to live our lives each and every day no matter what?
Every successful person has a set of standards, obviously. The massive difference though, is they typically have a written plan for how they’re going to live, act, play, work, and excel in life. These standards are unshakable. They also go the next level deeper.
One way successful people raise their bar constantly is to look at their goals and determine who they MUST become to achieve those goals.
You can’t become the #1 salesperson in your industry, or company for that matter, if your bar is set at a level that allows you to go home at 5 o’clock, watch tv and throw back a couple cocktails. Or you certainly won’t be fit and healthy for that matter if you standards allow you to make excuses and skip a fitness routine and proper nutrition plan.
All top athletes, top business people, and peak performing sales people have a whole different set of rules they live by. Their personal bar:
- Wakes them up to hit the literal and metaphorical gym an hour or two before everyone else to hone their minds, bodies and spirit.
- Their bars don’t allow them listen to the polluted news when driving in their cars. They’re listening to success-minded programs.
- They don’t engage in water-cooler gossip. Instead they’re finding ways to make a deal happen, improve their skills, or pummel the competition.
- And they don’t go home when everyone else does. They’re finding a way to add even more value to their clients and prospects lives and accomplish their goals.
To really succeed, I mean succeed beyond your wildest expectations you absolutely must raise your personal bar well beyond its present level. The most effective way you can raise your standards is to follow this 4 step plan:
- Review your current and “written” goals
- Write down who you MUST become as a person to accomplish them. Make sure to write the list or description in the “I am” voice. I am strong, I am focused, I am energetic, I am healthy, I am professional, I practice my skills every day, etc.
- Write down every behavior that supports your goals, how your days should be structured, and what you can no longer do that’s destructive towards your achievement.
- 4. Read this list every morning, and review your day to measure your behaviors and activity every night to stay focused.
Raise your bar well beyond your current limitations and your world will change radically and lightening fast.
There’s roughly 33 days left in 2011. What will you do to maximize your results? Will you fall pray to the holiday laziness, and buy into what your potential customers and colleagues excuses are?
You know the ones I’m talking about. Those people that tell you to call them after the holidays, or those that use the holidays as an excuse for their failures.
Get real, there’s really only two major government holidays left. Two days out of 33. Let’s maximize the other 31 days to the best of our ability.
If you want to increase your happiness, sales, wealth and influence, here’s a 12 step strategy to not only set yourself up for success the rest of this year, but to arm yourself to crush 2012.
1. Raise your personal standards for how you’re going to live your life and build your business.
2. Wake up an hour earlier each day. Read something short & inspirational, get some form of exercise – even if it’s just a walk around the block, and then re-write your goals & your daily action plan every morning. This one will be your toughest, and likely the one most quit following through on. Huge TIP – it’s the most important one of all!
3. Stop using 5 different time management and CRM systems. Pick one, commit to it, and make it work. You can master one to your benefit, or be a slave and a failure to all 5 – you choose.
4. Schedule block time for your action items, meetings, prospecting, and so on.
5. Commit to connecting & building 100 new relationships in the next 30 days. It’s easier than you think.
6. Read two books to improve your skills and knowledge base
7. Go find a sale or relationship you screwed up and fix it, or at a very minimum make peace
8. List every last conceivable resource you have, and write out a plan to maximize each of them to build your business. Some of them may seem insignificant to you, but to others they may make all the difference in getting a deal done.
9. Run a 10/10/10 campaign. If you don’t know what one is, call me and I’ll walk you through it.
10. Send out a hand written note to all of your new contacts. No one else will, and they will never forget it.
11. Every night before bed, reread your goals and visualize them. Your brain will come with creative ways to achieve them while you sleep
12. Finally, while everyone else is out getting drunk and over-indulging this holiday season, do something constructive to improve someone else’s life. You’ll be rewarded.
Success isn’t hard. Sales aren’t hard. Life isn’t hard. Building effective teams isn’t hard. Follow this 12 point plan, and you’ll see how much easier it is to win.
One of my early mentors had a plaque hanging in his office that read, “Success is the result of Good Judgment. Good Judgment is the result of Experience. Experience is the result of Bad Judgment.”
I must have looked at that sign for months before I realized that it was true in every area of life. What is bad judgment? Is it a series of failures, or as Thomas Edison say, a series of successful ways not to achieve our desired outcome?
So, if we’re on the road to success, you should welcome whatever results you achieve and learn and adapt your approach from them. It doesn’t matter if you’re in sales, management, a parent, etc. What does matter is that you don’t repeat the same mistakes over and over; otherwise, you’re just committing insanity.
You can’t manage and improve what you don’t measure, so here’s my recommendation to you:
1. Keep a journal or notepad with you at all times.
2. Every time you make or attempt to make progress towards any goal, write down your outcome.
3. Record your results and your approach.
4. Notice what and how you’re getting.
5. Didn’t get what you want, change your approach, but make sure you record it so you don’t make the same mistake twice.
Now, from your recorded results you should have a solid journal full of strategies on how to accomplish a great number of outcomes. Use these to propel your successes. Oh, here’s one last tip if you’re in sales building relationships (and aren’t we all?) – Nothing says I love you more than either padding someone’s wallet or fixing problem for them.
Look through your journal and see if you have discovered any possible solutions to a problem a client or prospect is facing and go help them solve it selflessly. They’ll pay you back many times over in thanks.
Use your bad judgment to your advantage to achieve your success and help others along the way. Give selflessly to others and you’ll build value far beyond what your competition could ever dream of.