Hey Sales People – You’re Not That Good.

As most of this community knows, I spent the last week at a mogul ski camp. I spent 6 days on the snow looking to improve my bump skiing.

Here is one of my training videos. My coach asked me not to use my poles and hold my hands up higher. He noticed I was too noisy with my poles and held my hands too low. The boa on the other hand rocked!

It worked, despite not using my poles it was one of my most technically sound runs (in spite of two obvious separations).

After my first day at camp, I realized there was so much I didn’t know about bump skiing that I decided NOT to participate in the park training I had originally singed up for.  I wanted to focus solely on my bump skiing.

This is what my bump skiing looked like on day one.  I wasn’t bad a mogul skier.

By most accounts, I was a very good bump skier at the beginning of camp and could out ski most people in the bumps.  But, the truth is, after starting the camp and comparing myself to the best, I quickly realized I’m not that good and have a long way to go. My line wasn’t very direct. My hands were too loud. My timing was and is still way off.  I’m initiating the turn way to early. My absorption isn’t good. My feet aren’t under me enough, etc.  I could go on and on.  It was awesome and humbling to ski with and learn from the best in the world. I learned a ton! One of my coaches was Eddie Hicks, from the Canadian Ski Team.

This what Eddie looks like when he skis. It’s the 2011 World Cup comp in Canada.  He’s even better now.

It’s no different in sales.

I’m sure most of you think you’re pretty good. You’ve made quota most of your life. Your customers like you. You make it to Presidents Club almost every year etc. By most accounts, you are good, but you’re not that good and until you accept it, you’ll never get better.

If you could video sales people, like you can video bump skiing, I know I could find problems with your prospecting, with your timing, with your ability to challenge, set up the call, to teach the customer, to steer the sale, to educate the client, to prospect, to position the product or solution, to read the customer and more. Sales, like skiing, is a highly technical, complex pursuit. It can never be truly mastered. The best accept this and look to push the limits. They accept and embrace there is always more to learn. They surround themselves with the  best sales people, coaches and information. They embrace their flaws as a positive and see them as a way to grow and become better.

I knew I had a lot to learn when I chose to go to Momentum Ski Camp. What I didn’t know was how much I didn’t know and how bad I really was. And, that was the best part of the trip.

If you want to be better at sales. If you want to get to the next level accept you’re not that good, because you’re not.

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