How Therapists Can Crash Their Way to Sales Success
My father used to tell my sister and me that whenever something looked easy, it was probably because the person doing it was very good at it. He would say that unbeknownst to us that person had been practicing for a very long time and there was no such thing as instant mastery or “overnight sensation”. Most of us found this to be true the first time we attempted to “moonwalk” like Michael Jackson.
Malcom Gladwell bore the same sentiments out in his bestseller Outliers. In it he theorized that to be an expert in any area you must have a minimum of 10,000 hours.
If you are the manager or director or vice president of a spa you don’t have the time or luxury of allowing your staff 10,000 hours to become experts at customer service or retail selling. And truth be told, most therapists already know the outcome of what they should be doing. The problem is that, no one is actually showing them how to achieve it in a safe environment.
When I was in my thirties I decided to learn roller-blading. Too embarrassed to get an instructor, I went on YouTube and found a site which demonstrated the necessary basics, like how to come to a complete stop. I located an office park not far from home with space enough for me to skate without rolling into any walls. I made it a point to go early in the morning. Because the office windows were mirrored I wasn’t aware if anyone bore witness to how many times I tore my backside up as I crashed and burned. It wasn’t pretty. But I became good at it because I was determined to do it and it was a (relatively) painless fun way to burn off calories.
Sales training should be the same way; painless and fun. Ideally the environment would replicate a real one on one setting of spa personnel and client. A skilled trainer knows how to create a safe learning situation with the understanding that mistakes are OK. For therapists or receptionists to crash and burn during practice is not bad, in fact it should be encouraged.
When training, simulations of real life spa experiences are remembered by everyone especially if they are extremely good or extremely bad. The bad ones, like a roller-blade fall, teach us how to maintain our balance the next time. It’s how we develop our expertise.
“Fall down seven times. Stand up eight.” – Japanese Proverb