Sports are highly emotional. The players are excited, the fans are all-in on their team, and the atmosphere inside a stadium can be electric.
For the players, that electric atmosphere and the emotion from the fans might be the difference between winning and losing. This support is called home-field advantage and it’s something every team strives for.
But how much of an impact do the fans really have on the team? Does the emotion of the people watching really impact the mentality of the players and how they perform?
Turns out, it does.
According to psychologist and author Sherrie Bourg Carter, emotions can be contagious. When fans are screaming, hollering, and cheering on their team, it affects how the players feel about their performance and can boost how well they’re playing. If the fans’ behavior becomes more negative, however, the players’ emotions will nosedive.
This research doesn’t just apply to sports, however -- it’s also relevant to sales. If a salesperson is happy and excited when speaking to a prospect, Carter’s research suggests that the prospect will respond to these emotions and might just “catch” them.
And this is important considering a study from Carnegie Mellon University which revealed that emotions play a direct role in decision making. For example, if buyers enter a decision down in the dumps, those feelings will impact how they think about their options. On the flip side, if the buyer is excited and happy when deciding, they’ll likely be more positive about those same options.
With this study in mind, reps would be wise to start every day with a sunny attitude and spread those positive emotions to their prospects (which then transfer to the decision). Happy rep, happy prospect. It's as simple as that.
Below are three tricks reps can use to get into the right mindset before connecting with a potential buyer.
1) Start the day with a favorite playlist.
By listening to a playlist of their favorite songs, reps can raise their contentment levels and feel better about their day ahead. According to a recent study, music makes people happier, more relaxed, less anxious, and less overwhelmed.
2) Have a cup of coffee before the call.
When reps consume caffeine before a call with a prospect, they are more likely to be focused as well as enthusiastic as they answer questions and educate the prospect.
3) Recite positive affirmations.
Positive affirmations can improve self-esteem, and higher self-esteem makes it easier for reps to project positivity when they’re working with prospects. In turn, buyers can feed off the rep’s “I can do this” mentality.
In sales, it’s up to the rep to build a great relationship with the prospect. The rep is who the prospect is relying on, and who they are speaking to regularly. When the salesperson is positive, research suggests that the potential buyer will be positive too.
Originally published Jan 6, 2016 7:00:00 AM, updated February 01 2017