Are you falling behind your sales goals? It’s not just you. According to Marc Wayshak, only about a quarter of salespeople exceeded their sales quota last year. Nearly everyone needs to up their sales game.

Of course, that’s easier said than done. Making sales is hard – otherwise, everyone would be exceeding their quotas. But if you’re willing to pull up your sleeves and put in some elbow grease, you will see results. The key is to be honest about what’s working and what’s not, and to be willing to make adjustments as needed.

Use the following tips and resources to work on honing your skills.

1. Focus on the fundamentals.

It’s easy to get distracted by the latest technique or the hottest trend. While these may be useful, they’re no substitution for the basics. You need a strong foundation before you can build a successful sales career on it. In an article for Insurance Selling, Ken Smith urges salespeople to focus on three key fundamentals: attitude, presentation and an emphasis on problem-solving.

2. Anticipate the objections.

In persuasive writing, it’s common to devote a paragraph or so to refuting the other side. The author knows the opposition’s main points. The reader may already be thinking about these points, so addressing and disproving them results in a stronger argument.

Making a sale is very similar. You know your prospects will likely be thinking of common objections. In another article for Insurance Selling, Charles K. Hirsch, CLU, explains that salespeople should address common objections before they’re even voiced.

3. Prove that you’re trustworthy.

It may not be fair, but many people see salespeople as pushy and untrustworthy. If you want to make a sale, you need to prove that you can be trusted.

It may seem contradictory, but being too persuasive could backfire if your prospects feel that they’re being manipulated instead of helped. In an article for Inc., Ian Altman explains the benefits of selling like an expert instead of a salesperson. Instead of coaxing the sale, you can coach a decision.

4. Pay attention to psychology.

To make more sales, it helps to understand the human mind. This can help you in two ways. One, you’ll understand how to motivate yourself to achieve more. Two, you’ll learn how to deal with others.

You don’t have to get a college degree in psychology to improve your sales techniques. There are plenty on resources that outline how salespeople can use psychology. One of these books is The Psychology of Selling by Brian Tracy, the chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International, which specializes in training and development. See Meg Prater’s HubSpot article for a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of the book.

One final way to up your game is to join a team of like-minded professionals who share your focus and can discuss best practices. You’ll find that group at PTT Financial. Learn more here.