Embrace Your Chaos

Friday, April 5, 2019

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On Tap Today: Embrace your chaos…


Good Morning!

Hello from JetBlue somewhere over the Midwest. Flying out to San Diego, my West Coast center of operations. (It’s always good when Alec and I get to work in the same location.)

No airline is perfect, but JetBlue does a pretty good job. It’s my bus. I’m back and forth between coasts every couple of weeks. Same row. Same extra space seat. Hunker down. Work. 6 hours fly by. Free cookies!


Sales Growth Quote of the Day:

“You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.” – Friedrich Nietzsche


Embrace Your Chaos!

The following excerpt is by the wonderful soccer writer for the NY Times, Rory Smith.

It’s from a recent story about my beloved Liverpool Football Club. He was writing about their scintillating match last weekend against Tottenham.

I know he was writing about soccer. But, I’m as obsessed about sales as I am soccer and tend to see lessons for sellers everywhere. (I know. I’m strange.)

In any event, Smith wrote:

“…really it was a strike against the idea that, even at this most rarefied level, there is a navigable structure to events. It was a reminder that not everything happens for a reason, that there is no overarching narrative, other than that which will be retrofitted with the benefit of hindsight; that sometimes, everything is chaos.”

Ain’t that the truth.

The sooner you come to terms with this the better.

Buying is hard. For the most part buyers don’t have well defined, repeatable processes in place for making big purchase decisions.

Buying is unpredictable. It’s not a linear process from A to B. It takes detours from C through Z before arriving to B.

Selling is hard. Markets are increasingly crowded and noisy. Making yourself heard is tough.

Selling is unpredictable. Stuff happens.

As Smith pointed out, contrary to the beliefs of many sellers, there is no navigable structure to buying. Or selling.

There is no overarching narrative; not everything in sales happens for a reason.

The genius of our achievements with buyers is a just a polish that we apply retroactively (to mask the role of luck and happenstance.)

The best way to hedge against the inevitable chaos is through the relationships you develop with buyers.

When uncertainty swirls around you, it’s the relationships you’ve developed with your key contacts that can provide a sense of order and clarity.

It’s these relationships that will enable you to act decisively and move while others are paralyzed into inaction.

I can’t stress this enough.

I think every sales opportunity I’ve ever worked on careened into chaos at some point.

If I hadn’t focused on developing strong relationships with my buyers, I would have been lost. Instead, I won.


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– Andy Paul