April 21, 2016

How to Overcome a Personal Downturn

By Selling Power Editors

Nearly all sales managers will face at least a few times in their careers when the energy required to keep on top of the game is more than they have to offer. Because of overwhelming challenges – either at work or home – they’ll be left feeling unmotivated or downright depressed.

Though energy fluctuations are a natural part of your career, how you manage them may be as critical to your company’s success as how you manage your team.

To pinpoint when you’ve become a little too routine and too comfortable with the status quo, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Have I stopped challenging myself?
  • Have I stopped learning?
  • Have I stopped questioning myself, my team, or my customers?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you’re in a rut – one that can be hazardous to your productivity and to your sales.

If this is the case, what you need is an infusion of new energy. Here are some positive steps you can take.

1. Make a conscious decision to learn something new. Read and/or listen to everything you can get your hands on that might help you make improvements in your behaviors and skills.

2. Surround yourself by people whose creative juices are flowing. It’s nearly impossible to remain in a rut when you’re supported by a network of creative partners. By constantly challenging each other, everyone – including you – is encouraged to keep learning, thinking, and changing.

3. Research your existing customers. Often the best way to make yourself feel better is to help someone else solve a problem. You need to constantly push yourself to meet new people in your target accounts and seek different perspectives on what’s going on with that customer. The more information you can uncover, the higher the chances you’ll find some tidbit that will help you serve that customer better.

4. Tackle your least favorite activities first. Don’t avoid your dreaded activities in the morning – this will only make it more difficult to face them as the day goes on. Accomplish your most vital but unappealing tasks early in the day.

5. Ask for help. There are plenty of people in your life who can help you recapture your energy and zeal to win. Communicate with your mentor, friends, therapist, life partner, and manager and state your intention to find your flow. It’s very likely someone will have an easy and practical suggestion to help you get back on track.

Personal downtimes are part of anyone’s career. But that doesn’t mean you have to sit idly by and wait for things to get better. Quite the contrary: Just as any successful salesperson finds ways to keep momentum going in times when sales are down, successful managers find ways to keep themselves motivated when their energy is waning.