I am a die-hard Star Wars fan. Before the days of reserved seating at the theatre, I would stand in line for up to 20 hours to catch a midnight showing. I’ve met Carrie Fisher, while dressed as Princess Leia at a convention in 2015, and I have the symbol of The Rebel Alliance tattooed on the back of my neck.
So, I’m a pretty big fan.
People often ask why I love Star Wars so much. Part of it is the adventure; the movies transport you to a galaxy far, far, away where anything is possible. But the real reason I love Star Wars is because it taught me valuable lessons that helped shape the woman I am today. While the lessons could be applied to all areas in life, here are 7 of the lessons I learned that helped me be a better salesperson.
1. Do or do not. There is no try.
This one is pretty iconic but there is so much truth to it, especially in sales. When I became a real estate agent, I went all in. I quit my other job, bought a reliable car, joined the best brokerage I could find and devoted 100% of my efforts into becoming the best agent I could be. I didn’t “give real estate a try,” I decided it was going to happen, no plan B.
2. Don’t let fear control you
Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to…a miserable career in real estate. Sales requires a tremendous amount of courage. Those who choose to overcome their fears are the ones who become successful, and it does get easier. With each moment of micro-bravery, your confidence increases. Luke started off as a farm boy on a desert planet in the middle of nowhere, but his incremental courage turned him into a Jedi Knight.
3. Find a good mentor
Without Obi-Wan, Luke would still be moisture farming on Tatooine and the Empire would rule the Galaxy (a long time ago, that is). Real estate can be a lonely career. You’re on your own with no one telling you what to do. But, the best agents I’ve met all had help from a coach or mentor. This is one of the reasons I love the Richard Robbins International organization so much – RRI gives you the opportunity to find your Obi-Wan.
4. Great kid, don’t get cocky.
No matter how big you are, as Qui-Gon would say, “There’s always a bigger fish.” As a sales person, you’ve been given an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others. Stay humble and good things will happen.
5. Never tell me the odds!
Just because it’s difficult, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go for it. The Rebel Alliance had the courage to fight the most powerful organization in the Galaxy. It seemed impossible but they weren’t going to let anything stand in the way of what they believed in – and they won. Personally, I respect that idea so much, I got a Rebel Alliance tattoo.
6. You can be both a princess and a warrior
Growing up with Princess Leia as a role model taught me that I can be soft and caring but also tough when I need to be. A great real estate agent is as kind as they are ruthless; understanding but also a deal maker. No matter what industry you work in, Princess Leia is the inspirational female leader we all looked up to as kids.
7. Learn from your mistakes and never give up
In a way, Star Wars is a story of tremendous failures. Obi-Wan’s padawan turns to the dark side, the Rebels destroy the Death Star only to have it reconstructed shortly after, Luke’s hand is cut off after rushing to face Vader, ignoring his master’s advice. But none of them ever give up. As salespeople, you face setbacks nearly every day; rejection, collapsed deals, government intervention, shifting markets, and disruptive technologies, just to name a few. But if you choose to learn from your setbacks, you can come back even more successful than before. Like Obi-Wan said, “If you strike me down I will become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.”
May the Fourth Be with You!