Sales is one of the most demanding jobs available. Every day, you deal with client problems, pitch goods, negotiate, present, and make proposals – all while balancing the anxieties, objections, concerns, and requirements of your customers, colleagues, sales managers, and other stakeholders. It’s a one-of-a-kind job with one-of-a-kind pressures.
However, when it comes to understanding the stress and emotional effect that selling may have on salespeople’s lives, the sales profession is often disregarded. However, it is not all terrible news. Stress in sales may be a beneficial tool:
it can give you the adrenaline you need to make an excellent presentation to clients, or it can give you the courage to go into a room full of prospects and network.
However, tension may become overwhelming at times. That’s when you need some strategies to assist you efficiently manage your stress so you may be free to succeed in your sales career without being hampered by sales anxiety.
In this post, we will look at why sales is one of the most stressful sectors to work in, as well as what you can do as a salesman to minimize stress and anxiety while still succeeding in your sales career.
The most significant contributors to sales stress
First, consider what factors contribute to sales stress and anxiety. More significantly, what can we do to alleviate stress and promote better methods of working? We’ll look at various reasons why the sales industry is especially stressful, and we’ll offer you some pointers and advice on how to better handle that stress.
Being required to be “on” at all times
Salespeople are expected to be accessible to their clients 24 hours a day, seven days a week, which may cause a great deal of stress and worry. It’s like 10 times the amount of ‘presenteeism’! Not only do you feel obligated to show up for your coworkers and superiors, but you must also seem to be always working for your customers.
This constant state of alertness does not allow your mind or body to unwind and recharge after a long, stressful day. And chronic worry may have an influence on your ability to execute your work properly; according to one study, 38% of salespeople said that stress has sometimes hampered their sales performance. Clearly, if being continually accessible interferes with your capacity to execute your work properly, it’s not helping your consumers.
Keeping a positive attitude toward sales success
Salespeople, in particular, believe they must constantly seem to be excelling and smashing it, even when they aren’t. This gap between how a salesperson is feeling and the image they believe they must give to clients, coworkers, and bosses may be a major cause of stress and worry.
Because of the nature of their profession, salespeople often feel they can’t be honest about having a particularly poor month or quarter, which may prevent many individuals from seeking help from supervisors and peers. Many account managers and business development representatives are hesitant to show vulnerability in sales, yet it is often the only way to start a larger dialogue about work-related stress and anxiety.
Balancing short-term and long-term objectives
Sales are all about…sales! However, when the bulk of your ‘worth’ at work is predicated on last quarter’s revenue-to-quota success, it might seem like you’re on a treadmill to always deliver. Every quarter is critical, and the quota grows each quarter, yet you still have the same amount of time in a day to accomplish your work.
To be successful month after month, salespeople must continually produce fresh leads for the following period while also closing sales possibilities that are already taking place. It’s a delicate balancing act between immediate and long-term objectives, so having a strategy in place for how you’ll generate new possibilities and manage current ones is vital to keeping a healthy sales pipeline.
Furthermore, adopting sales workload templates may assist you manage your day-to-day sales task. Feeling like you’re only as good as your sales results may be especially detrimental to a salesperson’s self-worth, so keep in mind that it’s just a number and isn’t necessarily a representation of how well you perform your work.
7 Ways to Get Rid of Sales Anxiety
So, now that we’ve discussed some of the reasons of sales stress and anxiety, let’s look at some of the methods you may lower your stress while working in sales. The good news is that there are many ways to go about it, and we’ve selected seven basic methods to help you get started effectively managing your work-related stress.
1. Identify your own stress scale
Examine which duties, activities, or circumstances in your day-to-day sales work cause you the most stress, and make a note of why these specific activities cause you tension. Is it because you’re afraid of public speaking? Or do you avoid cold calling at all costs?
Assign a ‘stress score’ to each activity on a scale of one to 10. For example, you may assign a ‘ten’ to an activity that gives you extreme anxiety and a ‘one’ to one that is mildly disturbing but still bearable.
Once you have the stress scores for each of your activities, consider what you could do to try to reduce the level of stress you feel about each task, such as scheduling a time in your diary to complete the exercise (such as ‘every morning, I will do ten cold calls and get them out of the way first thing so that I can be less stressed throughout my day’) or researching potential training courses to help you feel more confident about particularly stressful a task.
2. Discuss your stresses openly with teammates.
If you’re stressed in your sales role, chances are your colleagues are as well. Don’t be afraid to start a discussion with coworkers; it might actually benefit another colleague who has been battling with an issue but has been too afraid to speak out.
Perhaps ask your bosses to set up a regular time in the calendar for you and your coworkers to freely discuss what’s troubling you the most in a safe, non-judgmental, and supportive atmosphere. More businesses than ever are recognizing the need of supporting their workers’ well-being and mental health, so find out what your firm provides to help employees manage stress and anxiety at work.
3. Get more sleep at night and put off work until the morning
One issue with the always-on sales culture is that you never allow your mind and body the opportunity to completely shut down. Sleep deprivation only works for so long. You will eventually face burnout, so consider what you can do to stay working.
Is it necessary to establish a smartphone curfew so that you aren’t tempted to read emails from clients after 8 p.m.? Is it necessary to have an open communication with customers in order to set respectful, but firm, limits around response times to their calls and requests?
We often fear that since a customer has contacted us, they will want an instant answer; however, if they have been given explicit SLAs (service level agreements) or even informal promises as to when they may anticipate a response, many clients are prepared to wait.
When customers are dissatisfied with response times, it is generally because a talk about communication expectations was not had early in the relationship. Usually, that extremely essential email that you simply must react to right now can wait until the morning.
4. Avoid taking things personally
Sales rejection is really personal. But here’s the thing: it’s almost never personal. A client rejection is an excellent chance to contact potential consumers and learn why they didn’t select you.
The majority of the time, the reasons will be related to budget, product, or business value alignment between their firm and yours. A deal loss review is a great activity to conduct on a regular basis, not just for your company but also to give you some space from a lost offer so you can realize that it wasn’t your fault.
5. Practice meditation and take more pauses during the day
Salespeople are infamous for working long hours and checking in with consumers on weekends. We can’t operate at our best when we’re exhausted, so it’s critical to take frequent pauses to recharge; even a brief stroll outside of the office or having lunch away from your desk may make a big impact.
Many businesses are now providing well-being services to their employees in the workplace, such as meditation and lunchtime yoga, so look into what options are available to you and try to integrate them into your daily routine. If you don’t have time to take a full break away from your computer, even five minutes of deep breathing and meditation at your desk may help relieve tension.
6. Invest additional energy in interests other than work
Find hobbies, pastimes, and interests that will allow you to decompress from work and keep your mind off any tension caused by your sales career. We often believe that we do not have time for hobbies when, in reality, we are not prioritizing our time correctly and are devoting too much of our time to our jobs. It’s just as vital to discover activities that relax and refresh you so you can feel energized for the following day at work.
Perhaps a new interest might even benefit you in your sales career. You may, for example, join an amateur dramatics or improv club to assist you acquire confidence while presenting to consumers. Alternatively, a creative writing program might help you write more engaging customer proposals.
7. Take time off as needed
When things get too much, it’s critical to recognize the warning signs and take appropriate time off. It is preferable to take a few days off rather than burn out and feel unable to return to your work.
Self-care is essential in sales, but so is being able to recognize the signs that you’re becoming stressed. Is it possible that you’ve been missing meals a few days in a row in order to work more, or that you’ve had an especially grueling few weeks with early mornings and late nights?
If you feel like your job is affecting your mental health, it’s time to check in and decide if you can keep going or whether it would be better and more prudent to take a day off to recharge your batteries.
It’s doubtful that you’ll be able to totally eradicate sales anxiety – after all, one of the things that motivates a lot of salespeople to succeed is the ability to operate on a level of adrenaline and pressure – but there are techniques to manage your stress if you feel it’s becoming an issue.
It’s about taking the time to recharge when things seem to be getting on top of you, and identifying your stress triggers so you can catch them before they become a problem.
This article should have provided you some suggestions on how to handle day-to-day stress in your sales career, but remember that if your feelings become uncontrollable, you should seek professional counsel and direction from your general practitioner or doctor.