GUEST: Townsend Wardlaw, Townsend Wardlaw Consulting
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Is fear influencing your career? Are you focusing on your customers’ problems instead of providing solutions?
We spoke with Townsend Wardlaw, LinkedIn influencer and solo consultant since 2009, about how realizing your fears and expanding your sales mindset can accelerate your effectiveness as a salesperson.
Expanding the Mind
Several years ago, Townsend made a conscious decision to refocus his life. He began reaching out to mentors about how to expand the power of the mind. “I kept coming to the realization that even with the right environment and the right process…people still hit a wall,” Townsend said. “There’s still something preventing (us) from reaching this other level.”
It was during a particular role playing scenario with a mentor when Townsend decided to try a different approach to sales. He conducted a fear hunting exercise, similar to the ones he had gone through in his personal life. Townsend examined everything showing up emotionally, and traced it back through a story of what fear was telling him. Once the story of fear was realized and addressed, Townsend noticed a breakthrough.
“If I could help people have more complete access to all that they already have, they can accomplish more than they ever thought they could,” Townsend said.
There’s a lot that goes into fear and understanding how it plays a role in your life and your success. “When I talk about fear, I’m talking about not just the emotion of being scared, but about the force of fear, the deeper, darker monster that lives in all of us,” Townsend said.
One of the biggest realizations for Townsend was that fear manifests itself in emotions, which can create resistance – processing that resistance and getting over it can be all consuming.
“Fear takes away from (being in) the moment,” Townsend said. “If all of (our) energy is constantly running to deal with (it), we have very little energy left for that moment.”
Addressing and overcoming the fears of a salesperson led Townsend to think about the fears of a customer, and how presenting problems plays into these fears. “If I go looking for a problem to solve, people hide it,” Townsend said. “You’re literally creating the resistance that is wearing you down.”
Instead of finding problems, Townsend now presents positive solutions. “Think about how we wake up every day…we have to find a problem, convince them of the problem and get them to change. That’s exhausting. What if we woke up and said, ‘I have a solution.’”
“It really starts with mindset…wherever they are is OK, but you don’t make friends and start conversations by telling everybody ‘this is your problem,’” Townsend said.
3 Mindset Hacks
We asked Townsend what three shifts in mindset are crucial to solutions selling. This is what he said:
- Everything is going to be OK. What I see so much is this incredible pressure that’s put on (people), that they put on themselves to get it right.
- Don’t be afraid. Stop beating yourself up.
- Learn. Allocate a half hour a day to reading – spend time absorbing other people’s ideas. Find people who have done stuff and consume their stuff.
In every episode of the B2B Revenue Executive Experience, we try to pull one nugget of wisdom from our guests that they would impart on a sales professional. Here’s this one:
“The biggest lie we’re told is how we feel, our mood, our emotions – depend on our circumstances. It’s not true. You can be in any environment, and find a way to return to peace. It still may be unpleasant. But I know that peace is possible and from that place of peace, all your energy moves from being in those circumstances to ‘what am I going to do next, that’s going to put my in that better place.'”
This post is based on a podcast interview with Townsend Wardlaw, Townsend Wardlaw Consulting. To hear this episode, and many more like it, you can subscribe to the B2B Revenue Executive Experience.
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