You Need ‘One Thing’ to Be Great in Sales
Recently, I’ve been reading a great book coauthored by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan. It’s called The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Resultsand I couldn’t recommend it strongly enough.
Essentially, the takeaway is that in order to be successful professionally, workers just need to focus their energy on mastering one specific thing. For example, if you love selling technology solutions to B2B companies and you’re passionate about it, you need to pour yourself into it. Success will follow.
But how exactly do you go about choosing your one thing? You have to ask yourself questions and do a little bit of soul-searching. Only you know what makes you tick. Only you know what makes it easiest to get out of bed every morning.
Find what inspires you, and pursue it with all of your energy. You’ll enjoy dividends down the road. Now, some tips on how to make it happen.
Keller and Papasan write that extraordinary results are directly correlated with how narrowly you focus. Apple, for example, started off as a computing company. It switched over to mobile devices, and we all know what happened next.
There’s also Uber, which started off with the very modest task of transporting people from Point A to Point B.
Both companies have expanded their footprints. Apple’s working on cars and Uber’s working on food delivery. But they both started by focusing on a very specific niche of the market. Success is sequential; you just need to find your first domino, and the rest will fall into place.
What to Work On?
According to Keller and Papasan, doing the most important thing is always the most important thing.
When you’re tackling the most important task, nothing else matters in that moment. Don’t let your brain get carried away or overwhelmed with other thoughts.
Though at one point in time, you certainly heard about the merits of multi-tasking, it’s time to stop splitting your attention. Focus on the task at hand—nothing more, nothing less. When you divert attention to a separate task, you are unable to reach your full potential because you don’t have 100% of yourself to give.
Today Impacts Tomorrow
The work you do today directly relates with what you’ll have to do tomorrow, Keller and Papasan write. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll tackle part of a project today and wrap it up tomorrow. Rather, your goal should be to continue building on your successes and becoming an even better version of yourself.
Think of your work as a journey. You are getting closer to your destination every day. But you wouldn’t be where you are today if you didn’t travel yesterday.
My Take on Your One Thing
Keller and Papasan’s writing also inspired me to come up with some of my own ideas that I believe translate into success.
- Self-assess. What’s your gift? You know the answer better than anyone else.
- Respect progress. You might not make as much progress as you’d like to on any given day. Start small and move forward. You’re moving in the right direction.
- Eliminate anything that drains you. We’ve all dealt with negative energy (people, unhealthy habits, situations, stress ) in our lives. It’s counterproductive, remove it from your life.
- Find your reasons. What inspires you? Like Simon Sinek says, find your why. The rest will fall into place.
- Find your own energy source. You can’t reach your full potential if you’re exhausted all the time. Find what keeps you going. Meditation, exercise, goals (write them down), travel. You need something to propel you forward.