- April 20, 2011
- Posted by: Dave Kurlan
- Category: Understanding the Sales Force
The best thing about perfectionists on your sales force is that you don’t usually have to worry about their administrative accuracy. Their emails, letters, proposals and quotes are well done and not prone to typos. The information they input into your CRM or SFA is accurate and done on a timely basis. Their call reports are meticulous and submitted on time. What’s not to like about that?
The downside of course. And what’s that?
Well, perfectionists won’t do anything unless they believe they can do it perfectly. So when you’re attempting to get them to do something different, they usually won’t do it until they perfect it and they won’t perfect until they start doing it. So rather than change, they’ll develop a paralysis of sorts and you’ll think you’re getting resistance when in fact it is really fear! Some of the changes you’ll be looking for where perfectionists will have trouble are when you are attempting to get them to:
- hunt instead of manage existing accounts,
- sell in a more consultative way,
- ask more questions,
- push back and challenge prospects,
- sell your newest products or services when that is not their area of expertise or comfort
So, can you do anything to help them get started? Yes. Give them permission to screw it up. Provide a safe environment for them to practice. Be sure they understand that you support them and will protect them if something goes wrong. Understand how your perfectionists operate and you can help them develop the courage to try new things!