High Performance Selling

Thursday, March 1 2007

WellOiledMachineWhen I think of high performance, I’m reminded of Anthony Hopkins playing the role of Burt Munro, a senior citizen who rode the “World’s Fastest Indian”, a modified motorcycle that broke all the records of his day.

While the bike in the movie was a great co-star, the real high performance star was Burt himself. Burt was getting old. He was a grey-haired, pudgy, shy individual from New Zealand who wanted to take his souped-up motorcycle to the speed trials in the USA. At age 68, he risked everything, including his own life, taking the bike to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah to break the world speed record.

He definitely had his challenges. He was told he was too old to compete. He hadn’t registered for the trials. He didn’t have much money. He didn’t have a pit crew to help him. He was all by himself. But he had enough guts and determination to take on the challenge anyway. Burt was a high performance guy.

Like Burt, a High Performance Salesperson (HPS) is focused. Burt was clear about his goal. He didn’t have all the details and steps worked out, but he never took his eye off the goal. He was going to ride his bike to break the world records. HPS’s have a clearly defined goal and whether or not the details have been finalized, they stay focused on the goal. They don’t let distractions take them off course. They are determined to do whatever is necessary to reach the goal. Obstacles may get in the way, but a HPS will figure out a way to get under it, over it or around it.

Burt had confidence in his own ability and trusted his bike. He knew his bike inside out. Literally. He had torn it apart, refined it, polished it, and put it all back together. A HPS is confident in her own skills and abilities. She has that quiet confidence because she has studied hard. She knows her industry, her products, her services and most importantly, her clients. She also has a sales process. Like Burt’s bike, she has taken it apart, refined it, polished it and put it back together. She has taped her sales calls to analyze the tiniest details of her approach and has refined the words, the questions, the tone and pacing until she gets it just right.

Like Burt, HPS’s are passionate. When they talk about what they do, they glow. They get a sparkle in their eye that the nay-sayers can’t put out. They’re enthusiasm may be quite animated or calmly self-assured. Their passion and belief in their cause is contagious. You get carried away with their vision of the future.

HPS’s are also passionate about serving their clients. They understand that to win the race and stay ahead, they have to take care of their clients and focus on ways to help them succeed. They build a sustainable business that has a strong foundation and a view to the future.

In 1967, Burt Munro set a world record with his 1920 Indian motorcycle that still stands today.