I was eating my lunch today and I got a call that reiterated a vital lesson in terms of ways to achieve your goals. Working in sales can be a challenge, that's for sure! It's always interesting to actually receive a sales call, especially when you work in the sales profession and have your own goals for sales!

The call was from a bank and the sales representative from the bank introduced himself. I love receiving these calls because it gives me an insight into the way other companies try to achieve their goals for sales. It is a good way to get a comparison of what you are doing right, but more importantly, what you are doing wrong!Ways to achieve your goals can be done the easy way or the hard way!
The funny thing about this call was that I received a similar call to this 6 months ago, so I knew what was coming! Some people have their own agenda and it's safe to say that they do not listen. There are certain ways to achieve your goals, not listening can be complicate or destroy your results! This is never a good thing for your goals to achieve in life. I actually use to think that it was a cliche, you know "you should listen more if you want to achieve your goals for sales". The truth is that not listening means we fall into a horrible trap of "assuming".

You have heard the famous saying "never assume, it makes an ASS out of U and ME". Its a bit of an oldie but a goodie. One of the number one ways to achieve your goals, in my experience is to NEVER assume! Anyway, going back to the story. So this sales rep called me up from the bank and kept talking and talking AND talking. He had an agenda, which was to sell me some type of insurance. He was reading out a 10-15 minute sales pitch. This is no word of a lie. I was on the other end of the phone and couldn't believe this guy. Here are just a few of his mistakes (note these down as they are not ways to achieve your goals!):

He assumed I wasn't busy (he didn't ask)
He assumed I had a budget for this insurance
He assumed it was a priority for me
He assumed that I was an Australian Resident.....one of the prerequisites of qualifying for the insurance in the first place!

The guy was clearly far too focused on his own goals for sales! He is not a good example of how to set life goals. We must never assume. By the time he finished the call, he presumed that he had the sale. I said "You do know that I'm not an Australian Resident right?".......there was dead silence, it was almost like he hung up!"Oh...." he said, "no I didn't know that, unfortunately you don't qualify for the insurance, I am so sorry for taking up your time". With this, he quickly hung up the phone. He just knew that he wasted 20-30 minutes of his own time which he can never get back. By assuming, he hurt his own goals for sales.
Now I have been a victim of this far too many times for my own liking. Frankly its embarrassing and I now know that assuming is not one of the ways to achieve your goals!It hurts your goals to achieve in life! So when the same call was put through to me today, I quickly said "I'm not an Australian Resident so I'm afraid I can't help you". The sales rep knew he had just saved himself 30 minutes of time that he otherwise would have wasted.

It is OK to make mistakes like "assuming" things but its not OK to not learn from them. We must validate everything we do so that we learn lessons along the way and avoid repeating the same mistakes. This is one of the best ways to achieve your goals, by not repeating the same mistakes over and over. Someone once told me that this is the definition of insanity.

What assumptions have you made and what lessons have you learned from these assumptions? I am keen to hear your feedback....

Author's Bio: 

Hi my name is Gary Daly and my topic is goal setting.Here are a few quick facts about me:

I have Bachelor of Commerce Degree
I completed my Masters in Project Management in 2008
I am a licensed FIFA football agent
I am a sales professional

I have traveled to over 12 countries in the past four years. I am a self-confessed personal growth junkie. Football and meditation are my favourite ways to relax. I am very passionate about introducing young sales people to goal setting examples from the top business gurus so that they can complete goals better than ever before!