No matter how long you have worked in sales, chances are you have picked up a bad habit or two. You might not be aware of these bad habits or you may even think these bad habits are strengths rather than hindrances. Either way, bad habits can undermine your efforts and negatively impact your bottom line.

Liz Wendling, a nationally recognized business consultant, says the first step to breaking bad sales habits is knowing the habits you need to change. Once you know how you are holding yourself back, you can work on adopting new habits.

In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share some bad sales habits that Wendling advises all sales professionals to watch for if they want to perform at the highest level.

Following up poorly (or not at all). You should always start something with the intention to finish it. By not following up or failing to follow up consistently, you are missing out on sales.

Wasting time on busy work. Remember that your biggest commodity is your time. Many sales professionals spend time checking email, taking phone calls and browsing online when they should be spending time on high-value tasks, says Wendling. How much money you make is up to you. Commit to being highly productive to boost your bottom line.

Staying within your comfort zone. Smart sales professionals know that opportunities lie outside their comfort zone, notes Wendling. You cannot achieve growth or progress without stretching and going beyond your normal boundaries.

Not qualifying well. The best salespeople have a solid understanding of the qualifying process. They know that not everyone is a buyer. You can distinguish yourself as an expert with your questioning. Always investigate and dive in to get the information you need to qualify prospects.

Selling on price. Wendling asserts that it is never a good idea to compete on price. She says that you do not win opportunities on price but on the value you create. Instead of offering deep discounts, show exactly what problem you are solving and what value you bring. Many times, the price objection will disappear.

Using phrases like “touching base” and “checking in.” According to Wendling, sales professionals use these empty phrases entirely too much—and to their detriment. These words do not move the sales conversation forward. It is better to clearly ask prospects what the next step looks like for them.

Winging it. You may have fallen into a bad habit if you feel like you never need to practice. Wendling admits that role play is typically not a favorite sales activity, but it is highly effective. Rehearse before going into a sales call so you know how to respond.

Much of your sales success is in your hands. By taking time to reflect on bad habits you may have developed, you can take the first step at making positive changes. When you start to replace bad habits with good ones, you will notice exceptional results in your bottom line.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Liz Wendling is the president of Insight Business Consultants, a nationally recognized business consultant, sales expert and emotional intelligence coach.