of you know that next Sunday the Indianapolis Colts will play the New Orleans
Saints in Super Bowl XLIV (that's 44, for those of you who've forgotten your
Roman numerals!). Many of you - those who really follow football - know
that you will have the privilege of watching arguably
the greatest quarterback of all time - Peyton Manning - once again performing
on football's grand stage.
makes Peyton Manning a great among greats? Surely natural talent.
But also other qualities. Qualities such
Dedication to Continuous Improvement. Boundless Confidence. And good old fashion Hard Work. These
qualities are the mark of champions not only in football, but in any
look at how possessing each of these qualities makes champions in the profession
Drive. Drive is something internal - energy, vigor -
that compels certain individuals to be constantly moving forward, to push
themselves towards achieving a goal or objective. It is independent of external
influences. Peyton Manning is internally
motivated - is driven - to win
football games. The best sales people possess
this drive. While they appreciate having
an inspirational leader for a manager, they're not dependent on such a person to
get them to produce. The drive to do so
comes from within.
Dedication to Continuous Improvement. Everyone tells Peyton how great he is. So it
would be easy for him to simply soak up the accolades, be satisfied with his
accomplishments, and rest on his laurels.
But he doesn't. The guy spends more time preparing for games than most any quarterback in the
game. He studies the game of football
like a chess master studies a chess board.
to give himself an edge over his opponent.
The best sales people - the ones closing the most business, those handling
the most challenging accounts, those selling the most reluctant prospects - are
the ones who never rest on their laurels.
They regularly "sharpen the saw" - to use a phrase coined by Stephen
Covey - to stay on top of their games and ahead of their peers, and of their
Time and time again, we've seen Peyton Manning run his famous two-minute
drill to perfection. Even when
opposing defenses know it's coming, he's still able to march his team downfield -
seemingly at will - to score touchdowns, casting fear in his opponents while
doing so. That's not just talent -
that's confidence. Knowing you can beat
the odds - consistently - because you've done it before. Few quarterbacks have done this as consistently
as Peyton Manning has. And that consistent
success builds confidence. Do you have
confidence in your ability to engage an indifferent prospect? To handle their
objections? To present your solutions powerfully and convincingly? Do you have
the confidence to ask for commitments - including the order?
Hard work.The bedrock of any successful person - in any profession - is hard work. Even though he's a star player in the star
position, Peyton Manning works
as hard as any other player on his team during the five practice days
between games. This not only contributes
to his becoming the best player he can be, it earns him the respect of his
teammates. Are you working as hard as
you can at your profession - Sales?
you driven to excel at sales? To overcome those objections, to close those deals, to make
those extra calls to uncover and develop new opportunities - without being prodded by your manager? If not, a dose of introspection is in
order. Revisit why you decided to get
into sales. What do you want to achieve?
What are you willing to do to achieve it?
What do you do on a continuous basis to improve yourself? Do you invest in your own professional
development? How? How much time
(and, yes, money) do you invest in staying on top of your game, and ahead of
your peers and competition - over and above what your company provides?
Subscribing to and reading this newsletter is one thing - chalk one up in the
"plus" column. But is it
enough? Attend seminars and workshops. Participate in role plays.
Collaborate and learn on LinkedIN. Read a book on Sales.
about confidence? Confidence comes from being successful. Success comes from having the internal drive to do your best, from having solid fundamental skills, and from working hard and
smart. If you find your confidence is lagging, work on those skill areas in
which you're lacking - with a buddy, or with your manager - in order to
are you working as hard as you can - are you going the extra mile it takes to
be your best? If not, it's time for a gut check!
So as you're
watching Peyton Manning and Drew Brees perform at the top of their games Sunday
night, think about what you can do to be on top of your game each and every day you're out there selling.