It’s this simple.  We share this formula with all of our Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto sales training clients –  if you aren’t advancing your skill set, assume you are automatically going backwards.  Consider that your competitor is getting better at what they do and continually building a better relationship with your best buyers.  You must be pushing yourself to do things that are very uncomfortable for you to consistently progress…

Next Up

I can still remember the first day I had to make a sales presentation to a group meeting of buyers. I had been working with the owner of a franchised restaurant who seem quite interested in becoming a customer. He told me to come in to meet some of his partners. When I met him in the lobby on the day of the appointment, he told me I was next up. Next up for what specifically? Next up for a presentation to all eight owners at their Monthly Franchise Meeting. OK. More like ooookayyyy.

I still remember walking into that boardroom meeting with all eyes on me as I was introduced. I apologized for not being aware of the fact that I was about to present to eight owners and thanked them for the opportunity. I went up to their whiteboard, grabbed a marker and whispered the words “it’s showtime” in my head.

I talked about my company and product briefly, then asked the buyers what their perception was of who we were and what we had to offer. I involved the buyers, asked group questions, took off my suit jacket, rolled up my sleeves and started writing notes on the board. My adrenalin was pumping. There was no (adjective) way, I was going to mess up this opportunity. This was the first of many group presentations to buyers that led to my career as a Sales Manager and eventually a Sales Trainer and Business Consultant.

Here is the point:

To quote Wayne Gretzky – “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” The amazing Wayne Gretzky scored so many goals because he skated to where the puck was going to be, not where it was. That took insight, belief and courage. He was a leader and a great example of a true professional and mentor. There is an uncanny parallel to success in professional sports and business. You don’t have to be a huge sports fan to figure that out.


This is the feeling you experience when breaking out of your comfort zone. Stress is necessary for growth to occur. When you feel this tension, you will know that you’re on the right track. If a few
weeks go by and you haven’t felt the tell-tale sign of discomfort, you should be looking for ways to change that. Smart Salespeople push themselves for reasons of self- improvement.


Discomfort leads to pain. Now you’re really stretching and your confidence in what you’re doing is not high. You are walking in new territory. Congratulations! While your performance may not be up to your usual high standards, you’re learning a lot. Don’t retreat for safety. Continue to push yourself and trust in your ability to adapt and apply.

Discomfort plus pain equals Growth

This naturally occurs when you repeat the process of what you just started. I guarantee that each time you repeat the new technique you’re applying or doing any activity that was previously foreign,you’re improving. Once you experience growth and the results associated with it, you will become addicted to feeling the Discomfort and Pain. It will become an automatic sign that you are on the road to continuous advancement of your skill set and abilities.

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Pro Sales Guy