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Why every sales leader should have them (and make sure their sales reps have them too)

Is having multiple streams of income a good thing for sales professionals? I think the undeniable answer is yes. When a recession or other financial hardship comes along– which they inevitably do– we as sales professionals find ourselves in a challenging environment. We may have to make more phone calls, send more prospecting emails, knock on more doors. We see a natural dip in our output, in terms of revenue and commissionable dollars. This is a problem. And I am a big fan and a big believer that having multiple income streams is the way to fix this problem— for anyone, but especially sales professionals.

Why have multiple streams of income?

When all your income eggs are in one basket, and that one basket hits a challenge, recession or catastrophic event, that puts a financial stress on you, the sales professional. Once you have this financial stress, you have added pressure to perform and to generate revenue. This will ruin your sales process. When you have commission breath or sales desperation, you cannot perform at 100% of your capabilities because you aren’t able to clearly see the path to success. You’re trying to find the quickest way to make revenue because you feel the financial constraints of only having one income. Having multiple income streams takes the pressure off the sales professional and the sales entrepreneur in these inevitable situations.

Passive income and active income

What are those multiple streams of income? There’s passive streams of income and there’s active streams of income. Passive streams of income are things like stocks and real estate— investments that you aren’t actively engaged in on a daily basis. Active streams of income require you to be engaged more regularly— some people call that a “side hustle.” There’s multiple things that we can consider a side hustle, and I think we are all familiar with what those are. But what matters here is how you, as a sales leader, should be involved with this. Sales managers and sales leaders have this old school mentality belief that if you aren’t dedicating 100% of your time to this craft, then you can’t possibly be successful. Here’s what I want to say about that. That’s a lie. That is a huge lie. There’s stock traders who work only from their home and are making over seven figures a year. There’s real estate investors that close deals on their cell phone while they commute to their “day job.” So as a sales manager, as a sales leader, when times become challenging, you need to have a conversation with your people. Because as a sales leader, your job is to develop your people to be the best version of themselves. And sometimes the best version of themselves will require them to step outside of that “corporate job” they have. Encourage them to develop passive income streams. Teach them new skills so that they can develop an active side hustle. This will benefit you as the sales leader in the long run because when you have people in your organization earning multiple streams of income, it takes the pressure off when catastrophic events inevitably arise, threatening that main source of income.

Look, every week here on this blog, I go through a long process of trying to teach a sales strategy or sales leadership strategy. Today, I’m telling you, the sales professional, don’t rely one stream of income. You need a second or third stream of income. I’m telling you, the sales leader, if you want to develop your people to that next level, to that next level of income, to that next level of generational wealth, it is your job to teach the people that work for you how to make money, how to create multiple streams of income. If you are a sales leader and you’re not taking time to invest in the financial future of the people around you, you’re doing your people an injustice.

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