When it comes to your team – are you leading or being led?
When it comes to your clients – are you leading or being led?
When it comes to sales prospects – are you leading or being led?
Leading is a matter of choice and mindset. It is not a behavior or technique that you can just apply on a regular basis. First you have to have the mindset and make the choice that you want to lead. For example, if you don't choose to lead your clients and sales prospects - to help them to solve their problems - they will determine the direction for help. When that doesn’t work to solve their problems, they’ll go in another direction to get the help they need. It usually won’t involve you.
You must believe you are the expert in your field and that you have the cure for their problems, challenges, etc.
Sales people and clients leave for one of two reasons:
- They feel that they have received all they can from you, or
- They feel that they’re not making progress and you’re not helping them to solve their problems and keep growing.
Either way, it comes down to the fact that they’re looking for you to lead and show them the path to the future they’ve envisioned, but you’re not living up to that expectation.
Now that you’ve committed to the mindset of leading versus being led, let’s look at the behaviors and technique to apply to lead them.
Are you setting the direction to help others reach their goals and then guiding them there with the appropriate pushes along the way? Are you challenging them to help them see and break through a ceiling to reach a new level? Or are you sitting back and waiting for them to figure it out?
If you think of the best advisors/mentors/coaches you’ve had in your life, they were the people who helped you set the direction to reach your goals and then challenged you and pushed you to go farther, stretch more, and be better even when you didn’t think it was possible. They were always willing to have the tough conversations with you, even when you didn’t want to hear it, to get you to break out of your comfort zone and make it to the next level.
Leading is not a once in a while activity or something that you choose to do when you feel like it. It is something that you do at all times and in various ways. As a leader, you commit to bringing what is needed and wanted to all situations in every part of your life. You don’t get the luxury of taking plays off when you “don’t feel like it”.
When you talk to sales prospects, clients, and your team, do you say things like, “I think we should…” or “You could….”? What you should be saying is, “In order to help you solve this problem you’ve committed to fixing, here’s what we need to do…”, then lay out the plan for success and hold them accountable to execute and get there.
The next time you are in one of these situations, stop and think to yourself, “Am I leading or being led?” and then make the choice to be the leader that you already are.