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P = M * V

In physics, momentum is represented by a P, so the equation is P = Mass times Velocity. Physicist Isaac Newton's second law of motion is that the change of momentum equals the force acting upon the particle. Meaning momentum can be either forward or backward depending on which way the forces are pushing. In life, business and sales, we always want FORWARD momentum.

In his recent blog, Dan Rockwell, The Leadership Freak, describes how a series of small wins maximizes the forward momentum. He suggests that the keys to leveraging this positive momentum are:

Develop people – If it's only about the numbers, people are tools. Where comes before how – Describe where you choose to go before how.

Practice 5x encouragement – Encourage 5x more than you correct. Focus on learning – What are we learning, how can we do better?

Take action quickly – Delay kills momentum. Keep spinning after winning – Momentum is a series of successful endings that enable beginning again.

As a new manager, I killed my team's momentum with a simple question (unintentionally, of course) I asked them, "What did you sell today?" I wasn't celebrating the little victories with them; I was seemingly only interested in the result – the sale. As a more mature manager, I recognized that to restore momentum and confidence, I had to ask the right question: What success did you enjoy today? This allowed my team to brag about little victories along the way to making sales rather than fearing seeing me in the hallway for the dreaded question.

What resonates with me from Rockwell's blog is the 5x encouragement. As managers and leaders, we have precious resources in our care – our people. I've never heard anyone on my team say, "Jeff, if you praise me one more time, I'm going to leave!"

It's typical to have sales meetings on Mondays. So today, as you meet with your most important resources, make sure they leave feeling encouraged and empowered rather than chewed up and spit out for the week ahead. They get enough of that on the streets.

Jeff Schmidt is the SVP of Professional Development. You can reach him at Jeff.Schmidt@rab.com. You can all so connect with him on X and LinkedIn.

Source: Jeff Schmidt, SVP, Professional Development, RAB