Here’s to 2013

It’s New Year’s Eve and I can’t help but think about one of the most central concepts in B2B Sales:

IN SALES, YOU GO FROM HERO TO ZERO IN A MATTER OF MINUTES…

In other words, you may have…

  • Busted your goal,
  • Earned a spot in the “President’s Circle,” and
  • Won every sales award your company offers

…But once 2013 kicks off (you know, tomorrow), the question is,

What have you done for me lately?”

The good news is that, while one person goes from “hero to zero,” others have the chance to go from “zero to hero.”

Sales is a game of constant competition. It’s a game of seeing opportunity where others see emptiness.

As you open a new wall calendar, think about Napoleon Bonaparte’s reaction to Robert Fulton’s steamboat:

“How, sir, would you make a ship sail against the wind and currents by lighting a bonfire under her deck? I pray you, excuse me, I have not the time to listen to such nonsense.”

Somebody had to sell it.

Or consider radio broadcaster Mary Somerville’s observation about television in 1948:

“Television won’t last. It’s a flash in the pan.”

Somebody had to sell it.

And, when they were asked about the sales opportunities for photocopiers in 1959, IBM executives told Xerox executives,

“The world potential market for copying machines is 5,000 at most.”

Somebody had to sell it.

Every invention has required salespeople who went from zero to hero. So, I hope you’re ready to become a hero in 2013!

On the other hand, there was Mr. Alex Lewyt’s 1955 New York Times quote,

“Nuclear-powered vacuum cleaners will probably be a reality in 10 years.”

I guess that means that not every dream is worth pursuing. Pick carefully!

About Jeb Brooks

Jeb Brooks is President & CEO of the The Brooks Group, one of the world’s Top Ten Sales Training Firms as ranked by Selling Power Magazine. He is a sought-after commentator on topics related to sales, sales management, and adult learning, having appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Money, Fortune, and CNN. Jeb is the author of four books and numerous articles.