6

Know Your Numbers

Managing Your Ratios

Everything around you is mathematics. Everything around you is numbers.

—Shakuntala Devi

There are people who will tell you that sales is not a numbers game. This statement is often followed with “That's old-school thinking” or something I heard more recently, “Thinking of sales as a numbers game is stupid.”

Well, being stupid is stupid.

Sales is and always has been governed by numbers because, in sales, the formula for success is a simple mathematical formula: What (quality) you put into the pipe and how much (quantity) determines what you get out of the pipe.

Numbers, or the “how much,” are the science of sales. The “what”—the size of the prospects, the quality of the prospects, the qualification level of the prospects, the depth of your penetration and relationships with decisions makers, influencers, and coaches—that is a little bit of science and art.

Elite Athletes Know Their Numbers

Take a moment and think of your favorite professional athlete. If we were to walk up to that person and ask them to tell us about their latest stats, what do you think the probability is that they'd be able to recite a litany of detailed statistics on their performance?

I'll guarantee it would be 100 percent. I know this because elite athletes know their numbers. They know their numbers because their entire focus as competitors is reaching peak performance. Knowing their numbers gives them the data they need to evaluate how they are doing at any given ...

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