Losing deals? Not sure why? In denial perhaps?
I came across a summary of 1962’s “landmark” The Structure Of Scientific Revolutions written by Thomas Kuhn, the lessons of which could help any sales person in a dip get back on track quicker. (Here’s a different overview from wikipedia.)
His assessment talks about concepts like evidence and discovery, all analogous to sales traits. In essence, things pan out like this:
Everything goes along swimmingly, all calm, no dramas.
Then boom, a glitch. At first, this is swept under the carpet, ignored hoping it’ll go away. Nothing is really amiss.
Things get worse though. Glitches, questions, doubts and anomalies continue.
They mount to such height that a crisis hits.
Crises creates chaos and the fallout brings many losers.
Put this pattern into the context of a sales period. Consider a rogue lost sale mysteriously multiplying to several deals gone begging and you can see the parallel.
Kuhnianism would dictate that most people that enter this disruption, fail to travel through the cycle, leaving reputations and achievements in disarray.
So, if you experience a downturn in results, and in credit crunch precipitated, austerity-heralding times this is highly likely, acting quickly is the key.
In Kuhn’s then fresh language, you need a paradigm shift.
To accelerate out of the trough, immediately acknowledge the possible problem. Do everything you can to remove the shackles of your current frame of reference and analysis. Adopt a set of ideas from a radically new way of thinking and act early, act decisively to reduce your length of restrictions.