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Sales Operations Best Practices: The Mental Swing

By Star Report 3 min read


Leading a sales division requires a Manager to wear many hats — coach, mentor, trainer, motivator, and leader. There are so many aspects of new home sales management that are very exciting and rewarding. However, most sales leaders see sales operations as a “have to” vs. a “want to” and excitement plunges. How can we shift our mentality, so we begin to enjoy this side of our business? What if operational requirements were thought of as preparation for a professional sports game?

Great professional football teams spend extensive hours preparing their teams at the start and throughout the season. From hiring the right staff, watching game tape after game tape, evaluating and recruiting talent, analyzing their team vs. their competitors, developing new plays to gain an edge on the other teams’ weaknesses, and more — without extreme preparation by the coaching staff, even an all-star team would lose many games during a season. This extreme dedication to season preparation and constant adjustments throughout the year is key to winning, and the same can be said about sales operations. We all enjoy winning, so let’s start thinking about our divisions as a professional football team and ourselves as the legendary coaches. What would Vince Lombardi or Bear Bryant do to win a season? “It’s not the will to win, but the will to prepare to win that makes the difference,” the great Bear Bryant once said.

Preseason Preparation

Just like in professional sports, it is all in the preparation. To set yourself up for a winning season, you must first do a deep dive into your organizational structure and goals. How do you build your homes, what products do you offer, why did you pick the areas and projects currently in operation, etc. With this information, you can create a story on what makes your builder special or different. From there, evaluate your corporate staff from the owner down. What professional strengths does each person bring to win the season? Take that same process to your sales team (players) to evaluate your roster. From here, understand the gaps you need to train on and hire to ensure your team is well-rounded and ready to compete.

Know Your Season Rivals

Next is watching game tapes. You don’t need to know the extreme details of every builder, only the ones you will be playing during the season. Take the same detailed information you learned about your organization and learn theirs. Truly understand how they are structured from the top-down, both in sales and operations. Know your top competitors as well as you know your organization. Use this information to set up your game strategy to win on both offense and defense.

Build a Game-Time Strategy

Now take this research and create offensive and defensive plays to win each game. How does the competition differ from you? What strengths do they have, especially the ones your organization doesn’t currently possess? What strengths are a threat to your team’s success? Are there any strengths you can duplicate, one-up, or minimize? Where are their weaknesses, and are there opportunities that can be used to your team’s advantage? Use these detailed comparisons to set up your “play calls” (aka marketing plan, sales strategy, floor plan/feature adjustments, etc.).

Quarter & Halftime Adjustments

Many have heard the term “any given Sunday.” This also rings true in our industry. Every organization wants to succeed and win. Every team in football constructs halftime adjustments as not all game plans will work and will require adaptations. Even when winning the game, modifications are necessary to stay ahead of the rival(s). From marketing to staffing, make sure you are making adjustments throughout each quarter to stay ahead and maintain your advantage.

Looking at your business in this way could be the mental shift needed to become that unbeatable organization. Become Bear Bryant: ensure perfect preparation and recognize how that preparation affects your season and your team. It’s time to win in a big way.

Originally published Dec 21, 2020 under Explore the latest topics, updated February 1, 2024

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