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Fast-brain selling: The quickest way to motivate your sales team

Mar 22, 2019

As a sales leader, you know the importance of meeting short-term targets but also building for the future. To succeed at both, you need proven ideas that will get your team moving in the right direction, right away.

Keep reading to learn how fast-brain selling applies the science of behavioural economics to real-world challenges like onboarding new reps quickly, recognizing and retaining top performers, and moving your middle performers to achieve more.

Our brains process information in two significantly different ways: System 1 uses less energy, reacts faster, and relies on feelings and emotions. System 2 takes more time and energy and is more rational. Switching between the two can help us make better decisions and take more effective action.

Daniel Kahneman, an Israeli-American psychologist known for earning a Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences — which is incredibly rare — a psychologist earning the Nobel Prize in Economics, challenged modern economic theory that asserts humans are rational and make decisions based on logic and reason. In 2011, his book entitled “Thinking, Fast and Slow”, was a bestseller, and it summarizes much of his research. The title refers to two modes of thinking – fast and slow.

The slow-brain is deliberate, analytical, and in a consciously effortful mode of reasoning about the world. Our slow-brain fills out a tax form or parallel parks a car. It thoughtfully arrives at beliefs and reasoned choices. When we see a formula like this our slow-brain starts to analyze things. We try to be logical and determine what each letter means. And even if we figure out the letters, we have to do the math.

You may recognize this as the formula Isaac Newton used to explain the law of gravity.The fast-brain is automatic, intuitive, and in a largely unconscious mode. The fast-brain detects hostility or compassion in a voice and without thinking completes the phrase “bread and...” The fast-brain uses association and metaphor to produce a quick and dirty view of reality. As a sales leader, you probably have more spreadsheets than your slow-brain will ever be able to digest. We as businesspeople like spreadsheets because they make us look rational and logical. They are safe. They prove things. Like Newton’s law of gravity, they form the foundation of our selling process, but they can only take us so far. Sales is about action. It’s activity. Doing the right behaviours and making the right decisions. The fast-brain selling concept can help us get our sales teams emotionally engaged, set and achieve goals, and go from rookies to performers to stars as fast as possible. Now lets look at the fast-brain version of this formula: 

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