Going for the Gold: How to Be a Sales OlympianIt’s that time of year again. It’s the 2016 Summer Olympics. It’s a time when the best in the world compete on a global stage. Over 11,000 athletes from over 200 countries are competing in Rio right now with the dream of bringing home the gold.

I admire these athletes. They once again prove that success is not an overnight achievement. They all have stories of success and failure and what it takes to get to the Olympics. No one is going into this arena, hoping to come in 3rd (not that there is anything wrong with that). It’s more about having the mentality that you will not fail. That you will give it your all to win/place among the most elite athletes.

I am a sucker for athlete and sports analogies…

You’re in sales because you want to be the best. You’re in a competitive industry where you must win deals and hit quota to succeed. High performance means great rewards. It’s Q3, and it’s not a time to let your foot off the gas pedal. It’s time to go for the gold.

If you’re going to be a Sales Olympian, you need to not only possess strong sales characteristics, but be able to outperform your competition.

If you’re going to the Sales Olympics, this what you need to do:

Have a Dream

First things first. Have a goal. Without this, you are lost. It’s not enough to just say you want to be the best. Understand what you want to achieve. Is it to be the top sales rep of the month? Close the biggest deal in company history? Make it to President’s Club? Your goal is your compass. Focus on it.

Have a game planMake a Game Plan

Once you have your goals set, you need to outline a strategy to map your path to success. If you want to hit 120% of quota every month, what is it going to take? Reduce it to the ridiculous.

  • How many calls will you have to make?
  • How many hours will you have to hunt and prospect?
  • How many demos will you have to give?
  • How many follow-up emails/calls will you have to do?

Understand what you need to accomplish every day to make this goal a reality.

{Related Article: How to Crush the First 90 Days at Your New Sales Job}

Practice Until It Hurts

In sales, just like sports, practice makes perfect. Don’t expect a deal to close on your first call. Don’t expect every email you send to get a response. Don’t think your sales pitch is going to work with every prospect. Be willing to put in the long hours. Do your research on prospective clients. Hone your sales skills. Work with your managers to set up sales training. Collaborate with your co-workers. Work and rework your techniques until you find what works.

track your efforts and successDon’t Just Say, Do

Get out of your own head. Don’t psych yourself out. Like Nike says, “Just Do It.” Pick up the phone and make the calls. Get to the office early, stay late. Go above and beyond to service your customers.