This post was authored by Charlotte Stark, Dunham's Marketing Communications Associate. If you have questions concerning today's topic, please call us at (858) 964 - 0500. Hold us to a higher standard.

Let's face it: sales can be a messy, high-energy, go-getter profession, even if you have all your ducks in a row. However, coming to the sales desk with the right expectations can help turn an endless slog into a spirited challenge-solving. Those too-real moments can inform the choices you make and just how easy it is to stick to your work.

Expectation: My CRM system has everything I need to make a sale

Reality: Your CRM system is only as good as you make it

You may think when you sit at your desk to make calls that your customer relationship management (CRM) software will be the ticket to easy sales. In reality, though, the notes you make about each interaction with your clients, the automatic reminders for follow ups, and system settings that let you know when a prospect is engaged with you matter most. You get out what you put in - make sure you have the right systems in place to bolster your sales process.

Expectation: If I make a great product and tell clients about it, it's only natural they'll want to participate

Reality: Clients won't always participate in something, even if it is in their best interest

It doesn't feel great when you put a lot of love and hard work into a new product or program that goes on to get no interest from clients. While it never hurts to take a look at how you might change up your marketing to better explain what you have to offer, sometimes you just have to accept that the customer has final say over what they do and don't buy. Try not to be discouraged and keep trying to offer services you feel there's demand for.

Expectation: I'll always be able to tell who is and isn't going to buy

Reality: It's easy to misjudge a potential prospect if you're only making guesses, even educated ones

Sometimes your rudest, hard-line prospects can be your best paying clients, and it can be impossible to tell which will convert and which are a waste of time.  To avoid missing out on a potential client just waiting to choose you, always put your best foot forward and try not to strike out prospects you may not personally care for. Partition your resources appropriately based on the hard numbers for your engagement and sales, but always leave a door open for a prospect to change their mind.

Sales expectations can make or break your pipeline process. Greet your next prospecting session with an open mind and your goals firmly grounded. With a well-maintained CRM, sustained marketing efforts for great programs, and a willingness to see all prospects as potential clients your marketing lists may see fruitful additions in the future.