Friday, March 11, 2011

First and Ten

American Football. One of my favorite sports. It has so many business lessons to teach. I’m going to talk about one or two here.

Technical Sales like football is a team sport. If everyone doesn’t do their job we can’t win. The goal of football is to score a touchdown, we call it a sale. In football the longest you ever need to go to score is 100 yards, is sales it varies. In football, you get 4 attempts (downs) to move the ball 10 yards, then you get 4 more chances. In sales the downs vary. It is not necessary or advised to try to score a touchdown on every play. The closer you get the ball to the end zone the better chance you get to score.

So if you have seen football, the team gathers in a huddle. In the huddle the quarterback gives the play, lets everyone know what they need to do. When is the last time you had a pre-meeting huddle? Once you do this, you can go to the meeting ready to run your play. What play will you run?

The only time you see a football team throw a Hail Mary pass, is when they are running out of time. I advise you to do the same. Most teams will run a play that moves the ball down the field, towards their short term goal, a first down. So should you. In the huddle we determine how we want to move the sale. What are we going to do, what is our short term goal? What you need to do will change based on many factors.

In your sales cycle, set short term goals and keep moving the chains….