Having surveyed approximately 3,000 salespeople and trained over 4,000 sales managers across five countries, Peter Michie has reached a rather alarming conclusion: A large percentage of managers just don’t grasp the fundamental distinction between their current managerial roles and their former sales positions (from which most were promoted).
Marshall W. Northcott was first introduced to role-playing exercises early in his sales career while selling office equipment. He recalls doing role-playing frequently and in many different forms, doing role-playing exercises as a team around the boardroom table. They practiced the steps of the selling process so that they could raise their consciousness and be more effective, more often, in order to achieve a higher percentage of desired outcomes. They role-played in the demonstration room in order to be familiarized with the features, functions, key pads and the inner workings of all the current copier and fax models that we had in stock. They practiced in the car before appointments in order to be better prepared for the call and any potential situations or objections that might arise. They did so after debriefing the call in order to address any roadblocks or difficulties that hamstrung us in the appointment in order to ensure that if a similar situation arose in future we would be armed.
For Marshall, role playing became a powerful, positive way to learn that was both fun and enjoyable. He really doesn’t recall if he had any apprehension, nervousness or anxiety when first asked to engage in role-playing. However, recalling that it wasn’t optional! Everyone, with no exceptions was expected to take their turn and participate. When you don’t have a choice then you either buck up or you say your good byes and he doesn’t remember that ever happening.
Marshall’s stance is that timid souls shouldn’t be recruited for sales positions that are performance based and those who work in such roles should expect that they are going to experience the pressure and pleasure of performing in front of their peers.
SalesJournal.com wishes you a wonderful holiday season and a prosperous new year!
The New Year is days away. As many seek refuge from the negativity of the media, others look ahead to new beginnings. We are moving toward a pre-boom economy and selling professionals and managers will need to be more efficient and more productive next year. Drew Stevens, President of Stevens Consulting Group shares some of the areas that will be affected…
Skip Anderson, founder of Selling to Consumers Sales Training, wants you to take a look at your sales last March (March 2009). What can you gain by looking at your sales from last March? That was six months ago! How can it help your sales this month? Or next March?Selling is a profession of immediacy. Commission salespeople get paid for what they sell today. The presence of weekly, monthly, and yearly sales goals stresses the need for immediacy. Given all the attention on the “What have you sold for me lately” mentality of sales executives and managers (Skip doesn’t disagree with it, he just thinks it gets out of hand in some organizations to the point that it is no longer healthy for the long term health of the business), it’s not common for salespeople to look backward to analyze performance of a previous month, especially when it is six months prior.Here he shares five questions that will help you analyze your March sales from earlier this year, and then use that information to maximize your sales now.
When cross-cultural marketer and international sales strategist Cindy King first heard her North American sales friends speak of how your March sales were determined by what you did in December, her first thought was how lucky some people have it if they only have to think of sales 3 months in advance. And then she realized that as an international sales person used to opening new foreign markets she was comparing apples to oranges.
It’s tempting. Can you just come out and say you’re the best, without look self-serving? Can you point out a weakness in your competitor without it looking like bragging or mud-slinging? And if the client really needs to know something less-than-perfect about the competitor: can you point it out? Charles H. Green, Founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates, rarely cites politicians in his blog, but one piece of received political wisdom works in business too: if you’re in the lead, don’t debate the challenger.
This week’s blog is by Eric Farst, President of the Farst Group, which provides sales and marketing consulting services to companies nationwide.
Value is defined as the quality that renders something (or someone) desirable.
In an economy where many seem to be watching every penny, some think that the lowest bidder is always going to win. Think again. Best price does not always mean best value. Remember, people are still spending money on things that are necessary and important to them.
Many companies are now resorting to deep discounting to try to win more business. With budget tightening and spending reductions, some get drawn into bidding wars only to de-value their product, cut their margins and reduce their commissions.
Those companies which have been most successful maintaining consistency through these tough markets can attribute their success to two key factors:
- They have a unique value proposition and can clearly articulate it to their customers.
- They are effectively communicating their value message to their target market using a range of effective marketing techniques.
What is your value proposition? What makes your business different than your competitors and why would customers want to do business with you?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, I suggest you define your unique values immediately. If you have a value proposition and have not thought about it in a while, revisit it. You will probably provide much more significance now than you did when you first got started.
Some the most popular and effective means of communicating your message are through the use of social media tools like LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. These tools enable you to articulate your value proposition through building a profile focused to a specific market. They also allow you to broadcast your message to millions of potential customers to which you would not otherwise have access. Another great feature of these tools is that they are FREE.
Do your customers know what makes your business unique? Are you the “best kept secret” around? Try taking these tips to get your business noticed.
you’ve been around the sales business long enough, it’s likely you’ve heard someone refer to selling as a hunt, or use a worn-out sports metaphor to describe a sales effort. In this sort of thinking, a sales opportunity is a chase or a game, and clients are the prize. Michael W. McLaughlinlanguage of sales is full of bankrupt, counter-productive language that hinders your ability to win.