3 Reasons Why You Don't Achieve Your Sales Goals
In Brian Tracy's book The Psychology of Selling, he makes mention of a term called self-concept. The concept describes a set of beliefs you have about yourself. It is the way you see and think about yourself. People with poor self-concept do not expect much from themselves. Tracy highlights that there is a direct relationship between one's self-concept, on one hand, and one's performance and effectiveness, on the other.
To be effective, people have to set goals according to their self-concept. This means that the only way to be able to achieve these goals is if they are in agreement with your self-concept. Also, with each goal set and achieved, your self-concept improves. However, if you set a goal that's vastly beyond your previous achievements, it will be ignored by your self-concept.
In illustrating this, Brian Tracy cites an example using one of his experiences. As a salesman, he was making $30,000 a year and he wanted to increase it. So, he set a target of $300,000. As specific as the target seemed, his self-worth rejected it and instead of being motivated to achieve the goal, he was rather demotivated. When he realized his mistake, he reset his goal to $50,000 and immediately, he started making progress towards it.
This concept can also be applied in business. Each retail business can be seen as a person with goals and aspirations. As has been established in one of my previous articles, your business says a lot about your person. If you do not understand the importance of goal-setting as a person, there's no way you would incorporate this into your business. If you don't already set goals, you need to learn how to and know what makes it so important. I suggest you pick up Brian Tracy's book, Goals, and devour it. If you are the type who understands the importance of goal-setting and you actually practice it, then I am happy for you.
Seeing that your business has been identified as a person, I ask, do you set business goals? If you don't, then you really need to start doing so. Not only will it positively impact upon your performance, but it will help provide you with better yardsticks with which to measure your business's performance. However, in setting goals for your business, you need to know some things that can hinder you from achieving your set goals. Highlighted below are three reasons why you may set goals and end up not achieving them;
- Your goals are way beyond your belief
This is not a question of whether your goals are realistic or not. It is a question of whether you do or do not believe in the attainability of these goals. People who set goals and then doubt their own ability to achieve these goals are those who initially set the goals because they have to, or because they have seen how motivational goal-setting can be and they hope setting high-standard goals will motivate them better, when in fact, it doesn't work that way.
For example, Sam is a grocery store owner who sells mostly baby food items. Usually, it takes about 2 months for Sam's store to sellout and he desires a change. Sam decides he wants to improve on this and sell out in under 2 weeks. This is Sam's goal. It is specific and maybe, realistic. But the problem lies within Sam; his self-concept does not align with this new goal. Deep down, he doesn't believe in his and his business' ability to reach this goal. Thus, he ends up not achieving it in the following 2 weeks. Eventually, Sam gets demotivated. His goal was beyond his belief. This leads us to the next point.
- If you don't believe your goals, you won't put in the necessary effort
One principle of success is that you must first believe in the possibility of that which you seek to attain, only then can you go on to attain it. The problem with Sam, as we have highlighted, is that he set a goal that is beyond his level of belief and this has affected him in the physical. He finds that the action steps he plans to take do not measure up to the needed standard to attain his goals, or the steps are even beyond his current ability. Hence, he finds himself always falling short of the marks he's set.
Another scenario could be that he doesn't even make the needed efforts to begin with, simply because he sees no possible way of achieving the sales goal he set for his store.
- If you don't put in the necessary effort, challenges defeat you easily and you will give up
There are things that are certain in life and business, one of which is the constant appearance of challenges. These challenges, when overcome, provide us victories to celebrate. Challenges can be overcome with motivation and effort. If these two are not adequate, then we will fall short. This means we will not achieve the things that we want to. Sam isn't putting in the necessary efforts to achieve his sales goal and this vibe is rubbing off on his store assistants. He hasn't been properly motivated from the start and they too, if they were ever motivated about the goal, soon begin to lose motivation. Hence, we find that with every challenge that seems unconquerable, Sam gives up or procrastinates on it. Eventually, the challenges pile up so much so that Sam doesn't achieve his sales goal.
This same problem faces so many small business owners who run retail businesses that require POS system and inventory management in Nigeria. They set sales targets for their businesses but they don't go on to hit those targets. There are many reasons why this happens, these are just three I have discussed. Also, if you have noticed, the three challenges are sequential. One leads to the other, like a chain of events.
The simple solution is to work on your belief capacity or your 'business' self-concept' and understand the importance of process. Set goals you know can be achieved by you and your workers. This doesn't mean your goals should be low-standard or way below realistic targets, it just means you should set goals that when you stare at them long enough, they motivate you to keep on keeping on rather than make you lose hope. You are the best judge of your abilities. Set goals that match your self-concept and ability to achieve them. Have a great week.