These aren’t the 10 sales competencies you read about and listen to all the time. No way! These 10 are hardly ever discussed, seldom, if ever written about, and the most difficult to learn. Ready?
Even in the technology age, one decades-old summer tradition still excites young children. They hear the bells and the music off in the distance and the anticipation builds. As the volume increases you can hear the neighborhood kids yelling, “He’s coming! He’s coming!”
The first problem with today’s title is the “5” in “Top 5.”
They are not the 5 on which most sales managers spend their time, so let’s begin with the sales management practices on which most sales managers actually spend their time. By the way, that’s how so many “best practices” (that aren’t) actually get published. Authors ask (in this case sales managers) how they spend their time. The answers that are most often reported become best practices. So I repeat, the first list does not contain best practices, but includes those activities on which most sales managers spend their time.
Last week, I posted this article in reference to an Inc. Magazine article that was way off base about Consultative Selling. It led to a significant number of comments with one of them being this question:
“Dave, in your opinion, with all the training that is available and has been delivered to sales people over the years, how come sales people still fail at executing an effective approach to qualifying a prospect. Forget what we want to call the approach. Just basic fundamentals like asking questions. This is known throughout the selling universe but sales people still suck at this. How come?”
I have written many articles on the importance of and how to use a consultative approach to differentiate you and your company from your competitors and their companies so that the decision is not based on price.
I was listening to a Boston Sports Radio Station, the same one I wrote about here. Today’s guests were Christian Fauria, former tight end of the New England Patriots, and Matt Chatham, former linebacker of the same New England Patriots. They were discussing the very recent resignations of 3 coaches from this year’s Patriots team and the co-hosts asked, “Would you like to coach?”
More and more firms that aren’t traditionally sales-driven are finding it necessary to finally build more of a sales culture. They know they need to do a better job at selling in order to deal with increasing competition, fewer call-ins, commoditization of their products and services, aging rainmakers looking at retirement, etc. Management seems to understand that they need to be more proactive bringing in business, cross-selling and up-selling. They’re saying the right words. They’re asking the right questions. But can they pull it off?
That was the question posed to me yesterday while speaking at the Crystal Palace in Livingston NJ.
To effectively answer that question one must ask another question, that being, what is the largest number of salespeople a sales manager can manage?
Rick Roberge posted this on his TheRainmakermaker.com Blog about Entrepreneurs that (have to) sell and the frustrations they have balancing work and life.
When a company is ready to hire someone for its first sales role, they often face a big dilemma:
Should it be a salesperson?
Should it be a selling sales manager?
Should it be a selling Sales VP?