Sales Coaching Blog

Random Thoughts on Coaching, Performance and Life

Posted by Bill Eckstrom

February 3, 2016

Bill_Eckstrom_Headshot_2014_s.jpg*Too often I hear executives/business owners talk about their need to “find balance in their life”.  And, while this ethereal objective is easy to understand, I’ve decided not to participate.  There is nothing of notable significance that is accomplished with “balance”.   It is ordinary people who behave in an extreme manner that causes drastic change for themselves and their business.  As a result I have learned to respect and cherish unbalanced, extreme people.

*If you believe your business can accomplish something truly significant, make sure extreme talent is also on board.  Average talent in a role produces—yup, you guessed it—average results.  At EcSell we have consciously elected, and put the processes in place to hire only extreme talent.  What kind of talent have you opted to work with?

*BTW--your teams are perfectly coached for the results they produce today.

*Following a recent talk I gave in Dallas,  a gentleman approached me and commented that most high performance coaches he knew (in business or athletics) or that I referenced to in my keynote were @$$holes.  His strong choice of words made me pause and think, for many high performing coaches could certainly be perceived that way, and perhaps some even meet that criteria.  However, what I’ve concluded is they are not all @$$holes, but they are certainly relentless in their pursuit of whatever it is they wish to accomplish. 

Coach_Osborne.jpgIt is this focused relentlessness, this desire to succeed, that causes behavioral quirks and the labeling. What high performance coaches need to be careful of is making sure the relentless drive does not manifest itself into poor or coach_wooden.jpgunethical behavior. Good examples of relentless coaches who most would not consider @$$holes are John Wooden and Tom Osborne. Though certainly extreme and relentless in their approach and preparation, they exhibited exemplary behaviors on and off court and field. Please reference the first bullet.

*The kids are all gone, which leaves my lovely wife, two dogs and what now seems to be an empty home.  Discretionary time is no longer dictated by music performances, cheer aspen.jpgcompetitions, athletic events, etc. which has caused a void that work cannot completely fill (maybe I’m subconsciously trying to find balance).  So, our Yellow Labrador, Aspen, has been working her way through therapy dog testing (yours truly as a handler/coach) with a goal to soon visit hospitals, nursing homes, and wherever else her sweet soul is needed.  While I am in need of this philanthropic diversion and know Aspen will be great at it, visits will likely stir some strong emotions.  I will comment at a later date as to how it all works out.

*Having finished the college football season, Larry Culpepper, is my new favorite advertisement character (until the puppies come out during the Super Bowl).download.jpg  BTW—I would have signed his petition that allowed him to pass out the National Champion trophy.

Saban.jpg*Speaking of college football, does anyone truly believe the performance of a team IS NOT a reflection of how that team is coached?  How many times do we need to watch people like Nick Saban win before we are committed to finding and developing great coaches for our sales teams? 

*The EcSell Coaching Summit is quickly approaching and as a result I get to interact with our Summit speakers who are also people whom I would consider extreme talent. Engaging with these people is a side benefit of my job for they certainly help me raise my lid.  And while I want to write about them all, it is hard, given what we do, to not isolate Olympic sports psychologist, Dr. Peter Jensen.  His coaching experiences and wisdom that result from working with extreme athletes, along with his ability to articulate them to sales leaders and plain old life lessons, are worthy of everyone’s time. Seriously, don’t miss this guy.

*Is anyone else waiting for the New Year resolution people to stop making the gyms so crowded before we go back to working out?

*A few great reads:

  • A real life example of relentless pursuit is captured in The Wright Brothers by David McCullough.  They did what nobody had ever done and kept their humility in spite of success.

wright_brothers.jpg

  • Learn about the impact of coaching and an extreme performer by reading Open, the autobiography by Andre Agassi.  One doesn’t have to be a tennis fan to appreciate this shockingly good read.
Agassi.jpg
  • Finally, in an attempt to better understand sustainable change for me, our team, and our clients, I am currently reading Triggers, by Marshall Goldsmith.  Yup, this one is worthy of everyone’s time.

triggers.jpg

*Our team at EcSell is what most would consider delusional.  We are relentless in our pursuit of coaching’s impact on performance and transferring what we learn to businesses or whomever can benefit from our research and resulting message.  We actually believe our work will be utilized in colleges and taught universally someday.  Again, reference the first bullet. 

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Topics: sales leadership, sales coaching, Sales Coaching Performance

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