How many of you remember the movie, “The Karate Kid”? The famous quote, “Wax on, wax off” is heard often in Daniel San’s training. Mr. Miyagi has his young student practice basic maneuvers over and over again so that he can master the basics. The young student is frustrated because he just wants to learn how to fight, not wax the master’s car! This brief scene in the movie, though, demonstrates an important point for anyone wanting to become a Black Belt in Sales.
The basics build the foundation for success.As the movie progresses, we see the young apprentice get frustrated at his lack of. But one day, when Daniel is complaining about the training, Mr. Miyagi attacks him, and the young student defends himself, with wax on, wax off. Focusing on the basics gave him the ability to protect himself, the first step in successful martial arts.So how do we apply that to sales? When we are learning the sales mountain, it’s tempting to jump right to the cool stuff. You know, clever phrases to close or handle an objection. While those are important, they work best when you have mastered basic skills like setting appointments (try closing a customer who won’t meet with you) or asking good questions. Foundational skills pave the way for more value to the prospect and more sales for you.
Basics require a learner’s mind.The Karate Kid was in a hurry to get to the “good stuff”, the killer moves. He actually came to his instructor with “knowledge” he had watching kung fu movies. Buddhists tell a story about a master and his disciple. The disciple is so pleased to finally meet the master, and tell him all the wonderful knowledge he had amassed. After listening to this eager young man, the master asks if he would like a cup of tea. The disciple is a bit perplexed, but answers, “yes.” As the master fills student’s cup, he keeps pouring until the cup overflows. “Master, what are you doing?” the young man asks. The master responds, “You’re cup is full. I cannot teach you anything. Empty your cup and we will begin.”Focusing on the basics requires that we realize there is more to learn than what we know. If you are working on lead generation, remind yourself of the basic premise of lead gen. Practice the same approach intentionally. As you practice, you will refine this one skill until it becomes natural and more effective. By simply being open to new ways of generating a lead, you are becoming a master at lead generation and closing more sales.
I am excited about the possibilities for you as you master the basics of sales. Let me know what you are doing to master the basics in the comments below. Take care and have a great week!
Certified Sales Trainer and Business Coach
Co-host of BlackBeltSelling on BlogTalkRadio