There is a good model for the way to develop elite sales teams. It’s the way elite athletes improve, through intense goal setting, coaching and practice—frequently and repetitively. What humans are capable of, when they are rigorously coached with steady practice, is nothing short of amazing. Whether it’s gymnasts whirling through the air, marathoners averaging 4:42 per mile for 26 miles (13 mph!) or extreme skiers attacking near vertical cliffs in Alaska, training and practice creates these extraordinary levels of performance.
Skill Levels in Practice Determine Performance Levels Under Pressure!
Athletes and their coaches understand that high intensity practice creates the conditions for high performance levels in competition. Team coaches focus heavily on planning and executing fantastic practice sessions that move the performance needle. What determines which team wins comes down to which coach has designed and executed the best, most effective practice routines.
Keys to Results Producing Practice
Let’s take a close look at what turns practice into winning performance:
- Practice must be frequent and consistent
- Practice needs to stretch and strengthen skills and build performance confidence
- Great coaching is essential in the practice process
- Practice needs to simulate performance pressures
- Practice must be measured and reported
- Practice needs to be carefully planned and executed
Why Don’t More Sales Teams Practice Like Athletes Do?
Sales has much in common with athletics. Both recognize the importance of key performance moments, and both are highly competitive. Salespeople do a lot of work to create those key minutes when they are interacting with a high potential buyer and those key moments are very similar to a race or tournament. Interestingly, many sales teams do virtually no practice on a weekly—or even a monthly basis.
When we survey sales managers and executives and ask how often their salespeople practice their sales skills, the most common answer (about 90% of the time) is, “we don’t know.” Think about that for a moment. Most sales teams simply do not have a skills development practice plan where steady and intense practice coaching can happen on a weekly basis.
Imagine What Would Happen If:
…every sales person on your team practiced their selling skills, with intensity, for just an hour or two a week, every week? What would happen in three months or a year? How would this impact performance?
We have found that practice is the key ingredient that is often missing. However, at the SalesGym, when salespeople practice, they break bad habits, build good new ones and become more energized about the possibilities they can actualize. When our skills improve, we see more possibilities and opportunity! And that makes all the difference in the world.
Get expert sales knowledge with our FREE newsletter
Sign up for our monthly newsletter to access top sales training techniques.