Jack Nicklaus, possibly the greatest golfer of all time said the following:
“I never hit a shot, not even in practice, without having a very sharp, in focus picture of it in my head. It’s like a color movie. First I see the ball where I want it to finish, nice and white and sitting up high on bright green grass. Then the scene quickly changes and I see the ball going there: its path, trajectory and shape, even its behavior on landing.”
Highly successful athletes like Jack Nicklaus know the importance of mentally rehearsing before performances. The same is true for business, those who are most successful mentally rehearse before they perform. In business, unlike sport, the main tool of performance is what you say. Whether it be on that ever important sales call, the year end performance review or addressing your company at the national operations meeting, what you say in business is incredibly important and you must know what you are going to say, before you say it. The act of scripting, or writing out what needs to be said, is an incredibly important step in controlling success.
The first step in scripting is to identify what should be scripted. Take a moment now and identify one work task where scripting would be helpful. Now let’s figure out what to actually say. With scripts I advise my clients to start with the first sentence or two, include the “call to action” sentence and then the closing sentence. More can be added as you go but get the rough outline as a start and then build from there. For example, a wealth manager uses the following as her script with current clients.
Mrs Smith, this is Jane calling from Thomas Financial. I was looking over your account and wanted to discuss 2 items with you. First, I wanted to compliment you on keeping yourself so diversified, you have really done a great job, and I just wanted to let you know you should be proud of what you have done. I also wanted to let you know the current market conditions have created some conditions that I believe put you in a position to further improve your portfolio. I would like for you to consider placing an order for 10,000 dollars in (product X)… Thanks again for taking a few minutes with me Mrs Smith, it was good talking with you and know that I will stay in touch when other opportunities arise.
Once you have your first script complete I strongly advise you to record yourself practicing the script you just created. Record and then listen and edit if need be. After recording listening and editing your script three times it will be ready to go. Once you have done so I would recommend starting a digital file titled scripts. Keep adding to your file and eventually you will know what to say before you say it in all of your most important situations.