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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Ability, Affinity, and Affirmation: Keys to Your Success in 2015

keys-to-successToday is the first day of a new year. Time to put the successes and disappointments of last year behind you and focus on the year ahead. If you want to be sure you have a happy new year, challenge yourself to improve your performance in at least one area. But which area?

The areas with the most potential for personal growth are those where you have Ability, Affinity, and Affirmation.

Ability: You have natural talent in that area.

Affinity: Something you enjoy doing. 

Affirmation: Things you excel at, according to those who know you well.

I remember a few years back when my daughter decided to play the banjo (in addition to her piano and guitar playing). She was following the 3 As because she has plenty of natural musical talent, loves to play stringed instruments, and regularly had people telling her that her guitar playing was very strong, especially considering she had only been playing for a short time. 

Think about what the 3 As are telling you. For those in sales, this might mean selecting a business category that you know a lot about and enjoy dealing with—and then setting a goal (and a plan!) to call on at least one new prospect a month. Or perhaps you are going to improve the way you serve your biggest clients by coming up with at least one way per quarter to help their business—beyond the scope of what you usually do for them.

If you are a sales manager, you might make a commitment to be out in the field more in the year to come. Depending on your Ability, Affinity, and Affirmation, you might focus on like-rank contacts at major accounts, tightening client relationships, or increasing your opportunities to coach your best salespeople to grow their already excellent skills.

The three As are the keys to your success. Put them to work for you… and Happy New Year!

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Topics: leadership