Why Athletes Make Great Salespeople

Athletes Make Great Salespeople AllSearch

For the record, I am an ex-athlete.  Or an athlete in my mind, maybe. I used to be a cheerleader, and coach, which is how I identify. I still run…in cycles. When I make the time for it, I feel quite good about myself and remember exactly why I should be doing it. But these days, my sport of choice is sales.


So why do those of us who have been brought up in sports tend to have success in sales?


#WINNING – It’s the age-old tale, really. We have a competitive nature. We want to be the best. But also…


We learn how to lose! And still push through! In sports, there is only one #1. In sales, no one closes at 100%. We are going to lose deals and go through slumps. Resiliency is a big piece to the puzzle and “losing” with grace and moving on to the next serves us well in our careers.


Precision – every sport takes very precise movement in order to win. The same theory applies with sales.  Only the best salespeople take the time to practice until language is precise and second nature.


Preparation – football players and coaches spend hours watching game tape. It’s been at least fifteen years since I coached cheerleading and I can still rattle off my favorite competitors’ cheers. When you want to win, you need to know what you’re up against. In sales, this means we collect competitive intelligence, and we also prepare for appointments.  Not everything will always be the right fit for the customer, but an athlete goes in prepared for the best outcome.


Visualization – we learn visualization in sports.  See yourself completing the routine from start to finish with perfect form, hitting the game-winning basket, or crossing the finish line with a PR. We have practiced, we have prepared, now it is time to take a few minutes to visualize how the meeting will go!  That way, when we’re with the customer, auto-pilot takes over and we can just have some fun!


Written by Alanna Cochran, Sales & Executive Recruiter, AllSearch Professional Staffing, Inc.
Please reach out to me anytime at on EMAIL, always happy to help and advise!