Challenge Corner


5 Winning Ways of Gold Medal Salespeople

The other day, I caught some media coverage of the upcoming Olympics in Rio. As I watched Olympians preparing for their events, it struck me that high performance athletes have a lot in common with high performance salespeople. Both drive themselves relentlessly to win rewards and recognition through competitive performance in their individual fields. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that gold medalists, whether in sales or in the Olympics, consistently use 5 winning ways to maximize their performance.

Winning Way #1 – Preparing Yourself

Winning Way #1 Build skills to prepareGold medal athletes spend years practicing and preparing for their events. Gold medal salespeople do the same. They prepare themselves with deep knowledge of what they are selling and, equally importantly, who they are selling. They practice their skills to prepare for every sales interaction; they watch selling videos, participate in LinkedIn sales groups, network personally, constantly read sales books and articles on selling…ongoing actions that prepare them to sell competitively.


Winning Way #2 – Knowing the Field

High performance athletes have to know their field. They study their event and their competition to learn all they can about what to expect on event day and, as a result, how to win. Salespeople striving to be gold medalists also have to know their field. They work to find answers for market knowledge questions like:
Winning Way #2 Checklist for knowledge


Winning Way #3 – Believing in Yourself

Winnning Way #3 Believe in yourself: salesperson wearing crown, blowing her own horn.Athletes and salespeople striving for gold start with a strong belief in themselves.

They have a healthy level of confidence in their skills and abilities. They have learned to use mind control to conquer doubts and fears when they arise during competition. Gold medalists focus instead on believing that their preparation, knowledge and skill will ensure a win.


Winning Way #4 – Exceeding Personal Expectations

Winning Way #4 Go for goalsGold medal athletes and salespeople are never satisfied with their performance. They set aggressive performance goals for themselves. They work constantly to meet their goals…and then, to better them. Achieving a “personal best” always means resetting it; then working hard to overachieve the new goal.

This constant striving to improve results in ever better performance for both gold medal athletes and salespeople. It produces endless positive outcomes: increased reward – gold medals or higher earnings – personal satisfaction and recognition, and building their Olympic or sales careers.


Winning Way #5 – Going for it All

Winning Way #5 Never QuitWinning gold, at the Olympics or in sales, means going for it all and doing all that needs to be done to win.

No obstacles stand in the way of athletes or salespeople going for gold. They either plow through the obstacles – regardless of personal sacrifices, injuries or disappointments – or work to find a way around them. They’re determined and resilient, as Brazilian soccer player Marta Vieira da Silva explains in her LinkedIn Pulse post. When loss or defeat does occur, the high performance athlete and salesperson get right back in the game and continue to compete!


So how are you using these winning ways to sell more?

Peter's signature