Last Saturday I finally found the time to play a round of golf. It has been quite a while since I last played because I've been occupied by work and a slow home renovation project. It was great to get out, walk the course and enjoy the scenary. My actual golf game - not good.
I fancy myself a pretty good golfer - I have a solid swing, have played a lot of rounds and shot some relatively low scores in the past. But last Saturday I was terrible. It was actually quite embarassing. The problem, I realized afterwards, was very simple. I was out of practice. My mind was operating like I had been playing regularly, while my body clearly disagreed. My swing was inconsistent and sloppy. Regardless of my past experience and how much I mentally 'willed' myself to be better - it was clear that I hadn't physically swung the golf club enough recently.
Apparently business insights can arise from crappy rounds of golf. Do you 'practice' at your office? Some call it training or personal development - but I think practice is a pretty good word too. In sales and marketing I see so many businesses that have forgotten the importance of practicing pitches and rehearsing marketing message delivery. It is crucial to stay polished and continually 'work out the kinks' as my good friend and golfing buddy Neil always says. This means rehearsing presentations and sales pitch opportunities consistently, staying abreast of technology changes and bringing in external folks to help you stay well oiled for your next opportunity. Having the knowledge simply isn't enough - you need to continually refine and practice your sales and marketing skills to propel your business forward.