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EPN News, Sales / Marketing, The Trey Pennington Channel

Stopping, planting, and throwing downfield to create an opening

Posted: November 16, 2010 at 1:11 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

Personal Reflections
by Trey Pennington

Fall is a wonderful time of year: it’s the season for NCAA college football. The game not only entertains, it also instructs. Yes, one can draw analogies from the sport to create “plays” to build one’s business. During yesterday’s Open for Business Radio Show with Jay Handler, we got into a discussion about football and business development. Here’s a link to the MP3 Open for Business with Jay Handler and Trey Pennington. (Also you can listen to archived episodes for Open for Business Radio Show here on EPN – refer to Open for Business Link).

One play we discussed is the Halfback Pass (though on the recording, I got the play wrong). It’s an unexpected play designed to catch the defense off guard and create an opening for a pass downfield: essentially, elements designed to create opportunities. Here’s the formula for the play and for a business building tactic:

Do the unexpected. (If you go to Sandler Sales training, you’ll hear the trainer say, “If your competition is doing something, STOP doing it!” If everyone has an annual clearance sale, DON’T have an annual clearance sale. Sandler would say, “If every salesman in your industry wears a coat and tie, don’t wear a coat and tie.”)

Be willing to leverage secondary strengths. (The Halfback Pass is surprising because everyone EXPECTS the halfback to run with the football. He’s not usually known for his passing efficiency.)

Watch for the opening. (As the halfback runs with the ball, the defense is likely to break off the pass coverage to converge on the run. When they do, they’ll leave a receiver unguarded.)

Plant your feet and get the ball downfield. (This is where me and tons of entrepreneurs drop the ball: we don’t take the action, take the risk, to put the ball in the air. If you’ve been watching Seth Godin’s blog, you’ll see him saying over and over, “Just ship it!”)

How can you do something unexpected this week to create an opening in your market?


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