How Deliberate Practice Helped the New York Giants Win the NFC Championship

Last Sunday, the Giants win over San Francisco came down to a field goal in overtime…a field goal that occurred in wet sloppy conditions…the worst possible condition to kick a field goal.

But that’s exactly how the place holder and long snapper practised it. The New York Times article that describes how they did it is aptly named: Giants Field-Goal Unit, Needing Its Best, Prepared for the Worst.

The field-goal unit knew that the game could come down to a 3-point kick. They also knew that conditions in San Francisco would be wet and muddy. So all week Steve Weatherford, the Giant’s place holder, and Zac DeOssie, the Giant’s long snapper, simulated the worst possible conditions they could. They only practiced with balls kept in water buckets and even smeared the balls with mud.

Why is this important to real estate training? This is a perfect example of what Geoff Colvin calls deliberate practice, a topic I’ve written about in the past.

Preparing for the Worst in the Real Estate Market

For the most part, what you do in real estate doesn’t come down to a field goal on a muddy field in overtime to win a championship game. Fortunately, real estate in the U.S. is a little more forgiving. But this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t practice for the worst possible scenario.

Let’s work through three scenarios to show you what I mean.

Handling Objections

In a perfect world prospects, agents and clients would all do what we say and never throw up an obstacle. But that’s not the case, which is okay, because we all make objections from time to time. And if you think about it, an objection is a worst-case scenario.

Now, it’s not horrible, but it’s kind of like putting a ball in the bunker if you are golfing. You need to be good at getting the ball out even if sending it to the bunker doesn’t happen all the time. So, when it comes to objections, you practice overcoming them ruthlessly.

Closing the Deal

While closing a deal is not a worst-case scenario, I’ve been in the real estate business long enough to realize that most agents don’t know how to close the deal. They are really good at attracting a prospect, getting them interested in a home…but actually getting them to commit to buy it is a totally different story.

And if you can’t close the deal…you don’t get a commission. That’s not a good scenario at all. So, I would suggest you practice closing the deal, too.

Cold Calling

This is probably the least worst-case scenario, but ask a lot of real estate agents and they’ll tell you: they hate cold calling. In fact, they’ll avoid it like the plague. The only time they will even consider it is if they do not have any business coming in.

That’s a bad deal.

So you better learn to love it…and the best way to do that is simply to practice, practice and practice. And I don’t mean by that “pretending” like you are cold calling. What I mean by practice is you actually get on the phone and dial. And dial. And dial.

In no time you’ll love it.

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