Professional golfers often take risks – but the risks are educated risks based on the golfer’s intimate understanding of their own strengths and weaknesses. Rarely will you see a top golfer take a shot that doesn’t lie within their ability.

Professional salespeople can benefit from taking similar calculated risks, but only if they understand their own strengths profile. If you’ve been taking heroic risks only to end up facing obstacles, it’s time to reconsider how you analyze and choose the risks you take.

1. Choose the right tool.

Technology has changed the playing field for salespeople. Prospective customers have greater access to information than ever before, which means that sales professionals must focus on how they can build relationships and create value for each individual customer.

Before taking a risk, examine where you stand in relation to this customer and this sale. Then, customize your approach to the situation in front of you.

2. Be willing to scale back risks for a more predictable result.

Many professional golfers assess a particular hole, realize they’re capable of achieving an eagle, yet choose to play for a birdie or even par. Why do they do it?

Decisions like these are made when the costs of taking the “big risk” shot and missing are far higher than the costs of playing a more predictable series of strokes. Sales professionals can make a similar analysis of the “playing field” in front of them. Even when a big risk could pay off big, weigh its costs against the costs of taking a more predictable route that may come with a smaller reward, yet stands a higher chance of success.

3. Don’t panic.

Novices often take risks that are outside their ability to manage, only to panic and make one of two moves: playing it safe afterward, or taking the same risk over and over. Both methods are more likely to lead to failure.

If a risk doesn’t pay off, view it dispassionately. See what you can learn from it. Remind yourself of your current strengths and abilities, and focus on staying within them, taking smaller risks you know you can achieve.


Take A Risk On A New Approach

If you’re a sales professional striving to improve your approach, the experienced team at Hahn Training can help. We focus on giving sales teams actionable tools they can implement immediately to improve their results. Contact us today to learn more.

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