Never Stop Learning: What’s Old Can Become New Again in Direct Sales

By Belinda Ellsworth

Personal development and growth are constant requirements in direct sales, as in life. If you think you’ve quit learning and that you can’t grow, then you have nowhere to go but backwards.

Even returning to tried-and-true materials can teach you something new. If the resource is grounded in excellence, rather than mediocrity, it will still hold value for you. There is innovation and inspiration to be uncovered in new programs, as well as in old standbys with proven track records.

For example, you can reread a favorite book. You may be surprised by how much you forgot — and by how different the story or characters seem now, if you read it a long time ago. This is confirmation that you can continually learn different things at different times from the same materials because you’re in a different place.

Excellence stands up to the test of time, but the things you learn are only useful if you employ them, reinforce them, and remember them. Sometimes that means revisiting, because the lessons do you no good if you read them, reflect for a moment, and then forget about them. Just the act of seeking out more information and learning opportunities can cause you to make connections in your mind between different philosophies and techniques — and that, too, helps cement previous lessons.

People like refreshers on the basics. They may think, “I used to do that. I quit doing that. It worked for me. Why did I stop doing that?” That thought process and hearing the same information again keeps them returning to what works and adjusting the things that don’t. That happens to everyone. You’ve learned tons of techniques — probably more than you can ever use all at the same time. But how many do you actually retain? How many do you still use? There certainly is no shortage of ideas and things you already know that would really improve your businesses and your life.

So you discover a new approach. You learn it. You master it. It works great! And then . . . you get bored with it and just stop doing it. It happens. People get lazy. You will be doing great with a technique and it will be boosting your bookings, increasing attendance at your events, or pumping up your sales, and then you’ll just stop. Down the road, you run across it again and remember that it worked. And you know what? It can still work. It’s not that the technique wasn’t solid; it’s just that you quit using it.

Why not revisit some old habits that work? Take a look at what’s been great for you in the past, but that, for some reason, you’re just not doing anymore. Go back and implement the techniques that lit a fire under you so long ago. Listen to that CD that spurred you into action and led to a small change in your life. If it had power and value then, it likely will again.

A “reunion” with messages, tools, and habits that served you well in the past could leave you renewed and ready to take on new challenges. The tools of yesterday could be the beginning of a new personal growth path for you today.