On a networking call a couple of weeks ago, I heard a wonderful phrase that has been rattling around in my head ever since. My colleague was talking about the new company he was working for, and how much he appreciated their approach to training and development before expecting results. He said, "They believe you have to grow the roots before you grow the fruits."
I love that! Grow the roots! What an awesome saying! And it rhymes!
Basically, he was saying that his company believes in deep training to establish a base of understanding before you can go out and start finding business (bearing fruit, if you will.)
And if you have a sales team, I'd encourage you to think the same way—make sure your salespeople are developing deep, broad roots in your business and potential customer base before you expect them to start producing fruit. Otherwise, they might get a few good pieces, but the weight will quickly tip them over, exposing the fact that they didn't have a solid base to begin with.