Going for Gold!

Lisa Thal

The Winter Olympics have begun with over 2,900 athletes from 92 countries competing over a three-week period for the chance to take home the gold medal. It’s hard to imagine that these athletes practice and prepare mentally and physically over four years for that one shot at being named the best in the world!

For most Olympic athletes, their lives are immersed in their respective sports. They relentlessly pursue their passion with a singular goal in mind, to represent their country on the podium at the Olympic Games. They pray not to get the flu and they hope to stay injury free, so they can have that chance to make the most significant impact on their lives and win a medal. What I realize watching these incredible athletes is that in the end, they are competing against themselves and their personal best. Yes, we have competition that we are trying beat, but the reality is just like the Olympic athletes represent not only themselves, but their county, we too represent not only ourselves but also our company.

In most cases, depending on your industry, you are not given four years to earn someone’s business. You may only have one chance to make a lasting impression on that client, and you may only have one opportunity to provide a solution to their biggest challenge. Just like Olympic athletes, you only have one moment to make a difference.

Here are four traits that will have you performing like an Olympic athlete.

1) Attitude – This is a crucial component when competing. Do you have extreme passion and pride in what you do? Do you have confidence in yourself every day to earn the business? I find it very helpful each morning to meditate in order to quiet my mind and thoughts, so I can focus on positivity and gratitude. You need to create a winning attitude!

2) Skill – Olympic athletes work endlessly on areas of improvement so they can gain a competitive advantage over their competition. It may only cut a second off their time, but sometimes that’s enough to make a significant impact! Is there a skill that could significantly impact your business? Perhaps it could be how you prospect for new clients. Have you established that one valid business reason they should meet with you? It could be your discovery call when meeting with a client. Are you more prepared than your competition? Focus each day on one skill that could shift your ability to perform at a gold standard level.

3) Discipline – It takes extreme control to compete at the Olympic level. In sales, you are also required an extreme amount of training to be successful. You must stay focused on the activities that will give you the highest reward. I recommend starting your day with the most critical tasks you need to complete to move your business forward. Avoid the personal interruptions, emails, and other distractions that take you away from those priorities.

4) Resilience – Let’s face it, Olympic athletes suffer setbacks and disappointment just like us. The difference is how you react to it. Do you view the setback as a learning experience or an excuse not to compete? It’s important to find a way to love each moment and appreciate the journey! Use these situations as opportunities to improve your performance and always compete for the gold. After all, you win by giving it your personal best!

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