284 MINISODE Anna Scheller: What It Means to Prosper
Anna Scheller is known as the “black belt of sales” helping entrepreneurs master selling with confidence by building trusted relationships and leading customers to value. Also the host of podcasts Black Belt Selling and Sales Mastery Anna shares tips on how to transcend limiting beliefs that keep us playing small, trust our intuition, and view our mistakes as opportunities for learning.
Melinda Wittstock: Anna, welcome to Wings.
Anna Scheller: Well, thank you for having me, Melinda. Thank you so much.
Melinda Wittstock: Yeah, it's a pleasure to have you too. I always like to start these Minisodes with what's inspiring you right now.
Anna Scheller: Well, you know, what inspires me is the sacred writings that I read every morning. Recently, I've been studying the Hebrew scriptures, and there's this word called “prosper.” I was really fascinated by the word and I thought, “Huh, I'm going to look into this.” The word “prosper” actually means “to advance.”
Melinda Wittstock: Hmmm.
Anna Scheller: It's an interesting concept. It's applied to Joseph who was the guy that was sold into slavery by his brothers and yada-yada-yada, grows up to be viceroy of Egypt. It's as if God prospered him but the idea of prosper also that is when he was in his deepest, darkest moments, when in slavery, when in jail, and all of those things, he continued to advance himself as well. That's kind of been my theme lately. How do I advance in spite of the situation I might be finding myself in? How is God advancing me. That's where I find my inspiration.
Melinda Wittstock: That's lovely. You know it's interesting how words change over time and the context of words and what they actually mean, and so I love that. To prosper is to advance. As you're advancing, as we all are hopefully, we have challenges along the way. What are some of yours?
Anna Scheller: Well, some of my biggest challenges is trying to keep my different roles in priority. You know, I'm a mom, I'm a businesswoman, I do things in my church, I'm also a Crossfit athlete. It seems like I'm constantly juggling these things.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh yeah. I know a little bit about that. It's hard, right, because they're all priorities, and yet when you have multiple priorities, it's kind of like you have none.
Anna Scheller: Really, and it's really true. As part of my quiet time that I do every morning, I try to incorporate some mindfulness practice where I'm just kind of present to the moment, you're breathing, being thankful, and those things kind of help me bring me back to where I am and what I need to focus on at that time. It's also given me the impetus to start planning better because sometimes we feel like, “Well I have to do, I have to take care of this, and I have to take care of all these things that tend to come up.” I think if, for me, I'm learning how to have a better focus and a better direction for my day that lines up with my long-term goals, and that helps me to manage all the priorities that come at me and seem to scream for my attention.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh gosh. That's so, so true, where we get into this thing like, “I have to do this, I have to do that,” and often just when we open up our email first thing in the morning, we're inviting other people to set the agenda for us.
Anna Scheller: Right?
Melinda Wittstock: Right, and so taking those moments to be really quiet and really understand what actually is a high priority I think makes us much more productive and efficient and happy. Less stressed because we're doing the things that are the most important. If we're doing that, we're going to get much better results. What good advice.
Speaking of advice, what are you top three go to pieces of advice for women in business?
Anna Scheller: Well, you know, one think I think that we have to recognize is that we're capable of more than we think we are. I think a lot of times, that women in particular … I know men do this as well, but women in particular, we limit ourselves by what we think we can accomplish. The fact is, we can do so, so much more. I broke, I'm a black belt martial arts and I broke a brick. Later found I had osteoporosis while I was doing this whole thing. But I broke a brick, and the brick was hard. I mean I touched it, I had to carry it to where I had to break it. I had a coach who stood by me and helped me through it and when I did break it, I thought, “Oh my gosh, I can do so much more than I think I can.” That's my first piece of advice. You can do more than you think you can.
The second one is, especially for women, we need to listen to our intuition and we need to hook up with like-minded women who can help us really listen to ourselves. I think that sometimes especially in business, you know we have our business goals and we want to be accomplished we want to be successful, and sometimes we'll override our intuition because we think, well, this really … I don't have any good information to back that up to make a really rational decision. But we're gifted with intuition and I think if we are willing to share our concerns with a friend who is like us, they can help us to sort out what's kind of just fear that we need to ignore or if it's really something we need to pay attention to. But I think women have a real gift for intuition and they need to really hone into that.
Melinda Wittstock: This is so, so critical in business and in life. What's the third piece of advice?
Anna Scheller: The third piece of advice is that view mistakes as opportunities for growth and not with judgment. There was a time in my business, we were bleeding $10,000 a month, and for a small business that's not a good thing. I had a mentor who came alongside me, Melinda, and the one thing he kept saying to me is he said, “Your bank account does not determine your value.” From that bedrock of advice, I was able to see that I could learn lessons from the situation and I could overcome, which I did, but it really comes with seeing that failure is not failure, but failure is an opportunity for growth.
Melinda Wittstock: Always. This is one thing for anyone to succeed in business or in entrepreneurship, you have to be able to embrace failure. Call it feedback, call it learning, calling it testing hypotheses, whatever, I mean as an entrepreneur, you're innovating every day so failure comes with the territory and a lot of them are even beyond your control anyway. But I love what you say about value and knowing your own value. It's not your bank account, and your future prospects should not be constrained by your current circumstances either. What a beautiful piece of advice, and I imagine that that $10,000 burn turned around pretty quickly after you recognizing that.
Anna Scheller: Well, we were able to turn it around and it was actually thing taking the time to sort out … One, you have to acknowledge that you are responsible for your situation. I think a lot of times, we want to blame other people, the economy, the market, our spouse or significant other, and when we take responsibility for our own actions, it's so much easier to turn things around, and also to ask for help when you need help. Yeah, it took about six months, to be honest, to get that thing turned around, but in the long scheme of things, that really wasn't too long.
Melinda Wittstock: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Oh my goodness. Well how can people find you and work with you?
Anna Scheller: Well, the best place to find me is to go to my website at annascheller.com. It's Anna, A-N-N-A; Scheller, S-C-H-E-L-L-E-R dot com. You can look, see what I do, read my blogs. I also have a podcast up there, Black Belt Selling, that people can listen to. If you hit the Book a Consult in the corner, we can talk about any areas that you maybe have challenges in, particularly with sales, and we can come up with a couple of good ideas for you to walk away with and see if there's a possibility that I might be able to help you further. So go to annascheller.com and click the little button in the corner to book a free consultation with me.
Melinda Wittstock: Oh, that's wonderful. Anna, thank you so much for putting on your wings and flying with us.
Anna Scheller: Thank you for having me today, Melinda.
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