Imagine a sports team that didn't practice. Think of all the world-famous teams out there and even mediocre teams. They all practice, if they're going to be at the highest level in their sport.
I read a stat one time that said that NFL players spent a 15:1 ratio of time in practice versus game time. I do know, from watching and playing golf, that Tiger, Phil and Jordan Spieth all practice. All the players do a lot more practice than they do playing in the round. The average player will hit 15 drives in an 18-hole round. Yet how many do they hit off the practice tee? The average person's going to putt maybe 30 times a round. How many putts do they hit prior to the round?
What's your practice to game time ratio in sales?
In my book, The Contrarian Salesperson, one of my eight key principles is “Embrace Deliberate Practice”.
Deliberate practice is the idea of finding specific areas that you want to get better at and doing multiple repetitions (something called deep practice), around them.
There are a couple of keys here.
One is pick your target zone you're going to be working and practicing in.
Second is multiple repetitions. You can't practice a technique like the ‘Sandler Upfront Contract’ one time and expect to get it. It takes multiple repetitions.
Third is, get a coach. Someone who's going to help guide you through the process.
It's also key to get some honest feedback. Whether you record yourself on video, audio, or you have someone who is expert at what you're being critiqued on give you a critique.
Think about how much time you're spending on practice. If sales is your craft, sales is your profession, sales is your livelihood, are you putting the same level of commitment into practice that any professional sports athlete would? What are some improvements that you could make?