Hey - this isn't what you think. This is not a post touting the value of a good golf game towards building relationships in sales. That's a no brainer - a sales person should be able to golf believably, if not necessarily well.
Not long ago I golfed in a best-ball golf tournament (in which each move forward advances on the strength of the best shot of the foursome) with a co-worker and few customers.
"I don't understand!" my co-worker said in frustration, as her ball once again worm-burned down the fairway a few yards. "I put all my strength into it and I still can't move it very far!" "Welcome to sales," I answered.
It's the ongoing frustration of the best sales people and with me, too. We do our very best, give it 100% with enthusiasm and still sometimes we get caught in a slump. It's hard to stay positive.
But our golfing partner with a the fabulous swing summed it up a little later. "You know," he told my friend, "with a few lessons you could send that ball a mile." Translation - she's got what she needs to be successful except she keeps doing the same things that are keeping her from success. She doesn't know what she doesn't know.
That wasn't lost on me.
Being open to continuous improvement is the key to a good game, whether in sales or on the golf course, and if it's a particularly good day, both at the same time.