If there is something that is often lacking in the sales development world, I would say it’s passion. There are, of course, people who are passionate about helping sales development reps achieve success and advance their careers. Unfortunately, there are not that many sales development reps who are passionate about the role itself. For most, the SDR role is a stepping stone on the path to their vision of success in their careers. It’s a launchpad for better things to come. Because of this most reps are pushing themselves as hard as they can to get out of the role as fast as possible.
Is that a good thing?
I will admit, I’m not sure. On one hand, the motivation to make it to the next chapter in one’s career can be exactly the motivator necessary to do a killer job as a sales development rep. On the other, a lack of passion actually hinders one’s ability to master a skill that will provide value to them throughout their career, regardless if it’s in sales or not. I know phenomenal salespeople who were unbelievably gifted SDRs. They made statements so loud that their previous companies still talk about them. I also know phenomenal salespeople who did a lackluster jobs as an SDR, but got promoted because it was a small company that needed someone to sell for them. They were in the right place at the right time. To be clear, I believe great salespeople come from a wide range of backgrounds.
I’m not sure what kind of background would have served me the best, because I can’t go back, change my background, and see the result. This causes me to resort back to my default philosophy—do what has the highest chance of a successful result, even if there is potentially another way to achieve it with less effort. I guess that’s just a complicated way of saying...
Always play full out!
The journey you are on is a sacred one, because its yours. You choose how to navigate the maze that is life. A big portion of that maze is your career—your work life. Will you experience failure? Of course. Will you find yourself in a position where success looks impossible? Absolutely. The solutions to these events won’t come easy in many cases, but they all require the same thing to solve—You.
When you find yourself in on of those tough moments, when success looks impossible, you have two choices. The first option you have is to give 100 percent effort, even in the face of failure. Doing this is tough, because failure is the probable outcome. Nobody wants to fail when they give it their all—it stings. The second option is to give 50% effort, effectively guaranteeing failure. This is a much easier option to take because when the inevitable failure occurs, you can say to yourself "at least I didn't try." This protects your ego. I urge you to always, under every tough situation where failure seems imminent, to give 100% and play full out.
The reason why I advocate for playing full out is because I believe that’s what it takes to prevail through times of struggle. Often times, after an experience of failure, people end up settling for something undesirable. If you get knocked off a ledge and it was a far drop, what happens? Well, you’re hurt; you probably can’t move at first. All your energy is channeled into standing back up. Once you do stand and get comfortable, it’s very easy to stay where you landed, metaphorically speaking. Your relationship with failure will dictate how fast you are able to get up when knocked down and how quickly you are able to get back out of your comfort zone. Having a "play full out" mentality will empower you to make decisions clearly and without having to settle for wherever you land.
As always, have a wonderful day filled with success and self-improvement!