Hey everyone, welcome to my new website called Invoke Selling. First, I want to say “Hey.” I am devoting this blog to ‘selling’ and everything that encapsulates it. ‘Why’ you ask? Well, let me tell you. It all starts with My father.
My dad was an electrician for over 35 years plus. Practically, his entire professional career. The first 24 years he worked as an employee for a large company in Reno, Nevada. The remaining years he made an attempt to own and operate his own electrical business, but ultimately reverted back to employment. The reason I’m letting you know this is that I had a deep, heart to heart conversation with my dad the night before he decided to quit his job and go into business for himself. I’ll never forget what he said, and how he said it. There was an uncomfortable amount of trepidation in his voice as he stuttered “I quit my job today to start my own business and I’ve never been so scared in my entire life.”
If life has taught me anything it’s that everything is about timing. I whole heatedly believe this to be a universal law. It was no coincidence that my father, the man I look up to more than any other human being on this planet, decided to confide in me his deepest fears. He didn’t share this with my mother, my older brother or my younger sister. I was taking several business classes in High School and had become enthralled with the idea of starting and owning my businesses. I also made sure everyone in my family knew it. I would regurgitate everything I had learned at the dinner table, over breakfast, playing catch, anywhere and everywhere. I immediately realized this is why my dad reached out to me. He somehow knew that I needed to have this crucial conversation just as much as he did.
As the conversation continued I began to ask question after question to better understand the gravity of the situation. What I discovered was invaluable as a prospective entrepreneur and business owner: If you are going to be successful in business you must become great at selling, and the first person you MUST sell to is yourself.
For 24 years my father perfected a trade, gained a wealth of knowledge and experience in a particular field, and built strong relationships with clients and vendors. From the outside looking in there should not be any reason why my dad could not start his own business in the electrical field and become wildly successful. This is what I believed at the time of our conversation. However, as the next couple years unfolded the exact opposite occurred. My dad closed his business and never made any effort to try again.
Our minds are unbelievably powerful. If we feed it negative thoughts and self doubt the overall results will also be negative. Yet, if we feed it positive thoughts and reinforcement the overall results with be positive. Since my dad never truly believed that he would run a successful electrical business it never came to fruition. It would not have mattered how many clients, equipment or staff he had. He was not 100% sold on himself and so the self-defeating prophecy ensued.
I believe that this personal story explains the essence of sales. It’s a series mental chess matches. The first match is always against yourself, and unless you are victorious then your chances of winning any successive matches are slim to none. No matter how fast or slow progress through more difficult matches one thing remains constant; there is no limit to the number of matches you can have. My father decided to only take part in one chess match against himself and he got beat. Every entrepreneur that I’ve ever read about or talked to has lost this very same chess match with themselves. Only, they decided to pick themselves up and play chess over and over until they were victorious.
I want to thank my dad for teaching me this lesson. He is still one of my biggest heroes because in spite of fear he still played a game of chess.
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