I was talking to a coach of a very technical sport who told me about their 50X rule where young, elite athletes-in-training have to be able to do a routine perfectly, 50 times in a row.
Only then do they not only have the technique in their muscle memory but the confidence to perform under pressure, with precision, during competition.
This rule reminds me of my experience racing cars and go karts. In that world, we call it ‘seat time’ – that you need to do lots and lots of laps, ideally on the same corners, trying different things until you can consistently make the right moves on every corner, every time.
The same thing applies in business. Inspired by the 50X rule, it takes a while for someone to truly master anything. You can only learn and get better by doing something again and again and again and again and again and again and again.
This leads back to the 14X advisors in Your Oxygen Mask First (Chapter 11, Quadruple Your IQ). If you want help, you need someone who’s been there and done that 14 times. Of course, 50 times would be outstanding, although in the world of business that’s next to impossible!
So, are you and your teams getting enough practice every week to perfect your skills?
- A sales team to master role-playing, prospecting or key parts of the sales process
- An operations team to master switchovers or safety drills
- A finance team to master developing and communicating insights from the data.
The highest performance requires perfect practice to make skills automatic. F1 race teams, for example, are able to do pit stops that include changing all four tires in seconds. In fact, the fastest Formula One pit stop is a stunning 1.82 seconds, achieved by Red Bull Racing (Austria) during the 2019 Brazilian Grand Prix. Guaranteed, they have followed the 50X rule.
- Where can you and your team benefit from applying the 50X rule? If you’re not sure, just look at the things that you or your team consistently complain about – or that your customers might want you to perfect.
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