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by Phil Stubbs | @PhilStubbs14 | LinkedIn

Sometime in the past I watched a documentary about traffic jams on motorways (freeways) and what causes them. Researchers say aggressive motorists, who drive too fast and too close to the vehicle in front, or timid motorists, who leave too big a gap, send a “wave of deceleration” backwards down the road until traffic grinds to a stop.

Such behaviour leads to the stop-start traffic jams which infuriate motorists.

In the documentary there was a film of a test on a freeway in California – the traffic flowed at the same speed enabling it to travel closer together. They showed what happened when a car slowed up – the traffic snarls up! The concertina effect took no time at all to have a major impact on the traffic flow. Makes you think – if drivers drove like a team and not individuals it would make the traffic flow better.

I was at some traffic lights today about five cars back in a queue and as the lights went green the first car took ages to move off, as did the second, the third was swift but the forth was dawdling. The lights changed as I passed through – if we had moved as one, I think ten cars could’ve got through. No teamwork – everyone on their own agenda.

Let’s look at this another way.

At the start of a motorsport race the cars sit there waiting for the green light, or lights to go out. They then pull away as one – they don’t wait for the front row to move off, if they did it would take ages for all the cars to pass the start line and they would be fragmented from the very start of the race. Not great for entertainment. Moving as a collective adds to the excitement. To me, that’s like a business empowering its employees with social selling. When a business kicks off social selling it’s important they move as one otherwise the power of the message can be diluted. Just as watching one car speed off isn’t exciting – having only a handful of employees socially active, is going to limit your success.

Once you decide to start, social selling has far more impact when you have more employees active – it’s not just for the sales people, social works across an entire business. Why wouldn’t you want all your employees being advocates for you?

I added the image of a green light to this blog to remind you – if you haven’t started social selling then see this as the signal to GO! Or………

Let’s imagine you are in a line of traffic, each car representing your three biggest competitors (most markets only have room for four dominant parties). The light goes green and the first car goes, the second after a pause goes through the light, closely followed by the third – you however, have been slow to react and the lights has gone red.

As you sit and wait, you wonder how far down the social selling road they will be by the time you get another green light.

Digital Leadership Associates can get you moving on the road as a team, you just need to realise the light can’t stay green forever.

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Look at me! I’m brilliant, I must be – that’s why I love me.

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