How To Get Out of a Sales Slump

Sales slumps have happened before and will happen again. Some of them are foreseeable and avoidable, while some are not and at best can only be managed. A slump can be caused due to a variety of reasons and these can be any or a combination of the following:

  1. An international event causing ripple effects into every economy, like the tsunami.
  2. Natural and cyclical economic recessions like the recession happening now.
  3. Specific industry issues like the tourism industry being hit due to natural disasters, etc.
  4. Personal issues like a build-up of stress due to competition, pressures to achieve targets within the deadlines in the face of obstacles, etc.

How do we try to ensure that most of the slumps and their worst effects can be avoided? Some ways of doing it are below:

  1. Realize short-term and achievable sales.
  2. Don't go for the long haul project with big returns; instead focus on what is attainable in this sales period.
  3. Get professional or expert advice on strengthening your sales pitch and activity, and the way to move forward during the slump.
  4. See how the best sales force is doing their job.
  5. Trail with the best, even if not from your industry, and see how they beat the slump; you will definitely get ideas and  energy to bring back to your work.
  6. Don't keep the company of pessimists or people who drain your positive energy.
  7. Be with those who urge you to think ahead, think differently and think positively.
  8. Don't think negatively and don't let anyone else do it for you.
  9. With the above, also open yourself to new ideas and innovative ways of selling your products.
  10. A different product or a different approach to the sales of the product may yield different and better results; however, keep in mind that wildly innovative ideas can wait.
  11. While experiencing the slump, the need of the hour is to strategize to ensure survival and also success.
  12. Research why the slump happened; the reason why you are not better prepared for it can wait for another time.
  13. Know how you feel, why you feel it, that you are not alone in your feelings, and that it's entirely natural to feel as you do.
  14. Having a handle on the situation helps you tackle it better.
  15. You will be better aware that this is a transient phase and your attitude will help you in getting out of the slump and back into the winning mode.
  16. If the slump is caused by things beyond your control, then take a break to detach from the issues; this can give a better perspective -- things can always be thought through better with a cool mind.
  17. If you have a clear idea of what caused the slump or the ways to ride it and make it better, then don't sit back; take the reins and go forth - get on forward mode and clear things up.
  18. Never undermine your confidence or attitude.
  19. Make a list of all your skills and your success stories.
  20. Recognize that this is not the story of your life, but just one event in it, which will soon pass.
  21. It will pass well if you know that you are skilled enough to tackle it.
  22. Make more of an investment in yourself by using the reduction in activity to read up, get trained and add to your skills.
  23. Review your sales kit - does it look and sound as good as it did when it was created? How can you make it better?
  24. Listen to your customer. Hear why he is not buying and then try to improve on that specific area.

It is you in the sales slump and it is you who will need to get out. It will be your attitude, skills and family and friends who will help you in this effort to succeed. And succeed you will - with a positive attitude and the will to beat the sales slump!


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