Reading all of these New Year's resolution posts got me thinking about my own self-improvement resolutions for the new year. And I think I’ve got it: SLOW DOWN!
Well, the boss might not like the sound of it, but hold on a minute—it’s not what you’re thinking.
We’ve all become accustomed to getting more done in less time, whether it be through multi-tasking or just pushing ourselves to move as fast as possible. While there is no question that this leads to increased productivity, it has a downside. When we try to rush things or fail to pay full attention to what we are doing, we can miss important things along the way OR even worse, get into an accident. I was reminded about this myself - quite literally - recently while driving. I got sideswiped by another driver who was apparently not willing to wait his turn behind me at a traffic light. What did he gain by doing this? In addition to a time-consuming encounter with three police officers, I suspect that he’ll be facing some hefty insurance premium increases as a result of the $1800 of damage he inflicted on my car. But what consumed my thoughts the most in the hours and weeks after the accident was this: I am really glad that I was focusing completely on my driving that evening, and that I wasn’t in as much of a rush as I usually am.
The career benefits of this approach came to me recently while searching online for some inspiration and advice for sales professionals. Two articles grabbed my attention. As it turns out, there is some sales merit to this strategy:
The first was an oldie but goodie titled “Top 5 Tips for New Sellers” by Jill Konrath on the site Selling to Big Companies. Check out Tip #2 (as well as the rest of the article). The second was a July 2011 article titled “10 Tips for Salespeople Tired of Losing Sales” by Kevin Davis on the American Express Open Forum site. See Tip #10. It seems like there's nothing wrong with pumping the brakes.
Good food for thought. I think that I’ll slow down and smell the roses right now. Hope you do too. Happy New Year!