Accountability and Encouragement.

If you are going to maximize your potential in sales you need accountability and encouragement.

A recent experiment demonstrated the power of accountability and encouragement. Subjects were asked to stick their hand into a bucket of ice water and to leave it there as long as they could tolerate the pain. The average length was around one minute. Next, a friend was invited into the room and asked to encourage the subject as they put their other hand into the same bucket of ice water. The average length of time nearly doubled. (The skeptic in me says that it was because the water had warmed up by then… just kidding.)

You may be a disciplined person and on your own you may achieve a 6 or 7 on a scale of 0 to 10 in maximizing your potential as a salesperson. With a little help from your friends, however, you may move up to an 8 or 9, maybe even occasionally a 10. What kind of additional impact would that increase make on your sales career and on your life?


Watched any high school basketball games lately? Most decent ball players favor one hand or the other when dribbling. Most go “right” most of the time because they are right handed. They know they should go “left” equally as well, but they were too lazy or too undisciplined to stick with it when practicing with their “off”  hand.

Here’s another example, take out a piece of paper.  Sign your name with your strong hand. Now, sign your name with your “off” hand. Pretty pathetic, isn’t it? Looks like the signature on your last doctor’s prescription, doesn’t it? Now, what if your success depended on your ability to sign your name as neatly and as quickly with your “off” hand as with your strong hand? You’d be in BIG trouble, wouldn’t you?

Would you have the self-discipline to learn to write as well and as quickly with your off hand as you do with your naturally strong hand or would you need encouragement along the way? If you’re anything like me, you’re going to need encouragement and an occasional swift kick in the rear to keep on going.  Why would sales be any different?  It’s hard.  You need accountability and encouragement along the way.


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