Hospitals can open your eyes. Tom found this out when eighty-hour weeks took their toll. He was a successful salesman and long hours were his leg up. His reward was becoming one of the top salespeople in his industry but it had a high price tag. In 1992, he ended up in the ICU of a local hospital with a brain aneurysm that would need emergency surgery.
While awaiting the operation, Tom battled his compulsion. He picked up his cell and dialed a client’s number. He wouldn’t lose business because of this. Then a nurse walked by and caught him with the phone to his ear. Incredulous, she approached the bed. His condition was serious, she scolded, and it was critical that he rest. Critical. She insisted he stop working or she’d take his phone away.
Tom set his phone on a table and watched the nurse step into the hallway. He then picked it back up. Before he dialed, he paused. He looked around.
He saw a hospital bed and a cotton gown. What was he thinking? The nurse was right. This wasn’t a laughing matter. What would his family do if he didn’t make it? His wife and their two babies—they needed him around.
These thoughts continued as they wheeled him down the white hall. They were still on his mind as the anesthesiologist hovered above him and a warm sensation poured through his body.
When he came to, he was in the ICU again and his head was bandaged and work seemed very different. Once his recovery was complete, Tom hired two assistants and began cutting his hours in half. It made him nervous but he stuck with it. After an initial dip in productivity, business picked back up until it was eventually outpacing its pre-op tempo. Today, Tom’s business brings in three times more than before his surgery, proving that more work doesn’t always mean more sales.
It took a stern nurse and a cold gurney to set Tom straight, but he learned that success is achieved by maintaining priorities, not working harder. By delegating many of his daily tasks to a team of capable people, he freed up his time to solely invest in what he knew best—his customers. This alone brought on satisfaction two-fold: business boomed and he had the time to enjoy its success.
The following are the ten best investments you can make to reap a more secure and successful sales business, as well as a more abundant life.
1. Invest in your relationships with those you love.
2. Invest in a long-term personal-development program.
3. Invest in a sales coach.
4. Invest in a competent right-hand assistant.
5. Invest in your personal image.
6. Invest in a personal financial plan.
7. Invest time in an exercise program.
8. Invest in a client-retention program.
9. Invest in a library.
10. Invest in technology