After a great match on Saturday and another Six Nations finale, we decided to make an analogy between this fast-paced sport and the art of selling. And believe it or not Rugby and Sales have more in common than you may think! Keep reading to find out…
Both rugby and sales need a well-defined strategy in order to succeed. A well-orchestrated Rugby match is backed up by a game-plan with defined actions and a good understanding of the team’s strengths and weaknesses. When players enter the pitch, they know which position they'll be playing, the tactics rehearsed, what back move to use for unlocking the defence and so on…
In the same way, a successful sales force will rely on a strategy that will guide them to focus on certain targets and help them to communicate with their prospects in a relevant and meaningful way. As the academic Henry Mintzberg once said "Strategy is not the consequence of planning, but the opposite: its starting point."
2.- Perform under pressure
Rugby players have to perform under pressure all the time and in sales the pressure can be just as severe. However this can help salespeople -and players- to achieve a good performance. For that to happen, most salespeople would need to be taught on how to handle stress. When we analyse the most common treats of successful salespeople we realise that top performers are very effective at handling frustration and the stress of hitting the targets, which can be achieved by good coaching.
3.- Selling is a team sport
Even though sales is stereotypically thought of as an individualized occupation, the reality is other. A good salesperson will have a strong manager, coach and team giving him/her support, where best practices are shared and collaboration is encouraged across the business. Sales reps have individual goals and incentives but they also have a wider understanding of the company’s targets and they all work to hit those numbers quarter after quarter. After all acting as a unit gives a better chance for reaching the long term goals.
There are many similarities between Rugby and Sales. Perhaps the most important is that both need to be executed by passionate professionals who are willing to give their best in the pitch. Do you have what it takes to be a sales professional? We think you do, so click here to read more about our current job opportunities.