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by Phil Stubbs | @PhilStubbs14 | LinkedIn

I love a bit of cycling and I remember, many years ago, being enthralled by the Tour De France when it was first covered by Channel 4 on television the UK. Back then, the bikes weren’t hugely dissimilar to the racing bike I was riding myself. How times change.

Today, the bikes are worth as much as a new family sized saloon and have more gadgets and electronics than my first car! A friend of mine, that never wears lycra whilst cycling, has a German made bike with electronic gears!

Professional cycling now regularly appears of our screens, and all the Grand Tours are covered live – plus we get the chance to watch the major track events.

The speed the cyclists reach and maintain, even on mountain stages is phenomenal – they can ‘cruise’ faster than the top speed I can achieve and I’m sure they go up hills quicker than I can pedal on the flat!  That pace jumps another level in the team time trials (TTT). The record is currently held by Orica-GreenEDGE who clocked a crazy 57.841 km/h (35.94 mph) over a 25km course in Nice during the 2013 Tour De France.

For those of you not familiar with the TTT – the team will head off as one (that’s 9 rides in the Tour De France and Giro D’Italia) and riders take it in turns to lead, riding at slightly above their aerobic threshold while the others tuck in (draft) behind. The front rider is said to be ‘taking a pull’, the stronger riders tend to do a longer ‘pull’ than the weaker ones. Usually, when you finish your ‘pull’, you peel off and join the back of the group, resting as others take their turn.

The teams finishing time is taken the moment the 5thrider (or agreed number) crosses the finish line. Which means a team can afford to ‘drop’ a maximum 4 out of their 9 riders. You could say the weaker ones fall off the back of the ‘train’. The team’s performance is then based on how quick they can get the 5thplaced bike over the line – no point in a very strong rider racing off into the distance. The same for having the 5thdrift off the back. They work as a cohesive team – as strong and fast as that 5thbike.

This is similar to sales teams and programmatic social selling – much more can be achieved as a collective.

If, within a team of ten – one member writes two blogs a week, posts three pieces of content on LinkedIn and five tweets a day (plus likes, comments, shares and retweets) and then another only posts once every fortnight on LinkedIn and doesn’t tweet. That lack of activity dilutes the good work done by the most productive. Working as a team – sharing each other’s content through your respective networks, posting tweets and re-tweeting colleagues efforts – makes a huge difference.

Team work will get you seen more, generate more inbound, create more engagement and help build that all important pipeline. Team work will boost your organic search on Google and generate 20-30% of additional new business. Plus, the results generated by social selling as a team, means you can direct budget to areas of your business that needs it.

Team work and programmatic social selling will put you ahead of your competition – and that’s where you could stay. It’s up to you.

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