You’re today in an interesting position. Why? Because times have changed… the internet and other forms of media give your customers easy access to information more easily than a few years ago. Things that worked for you a few years ago are just not going to work today. A few clicks on the internet and your customers can find out about you and your company in a heartbeat, especially, compared to your competition with regards to value and price.
No doubt you understand the above and as a result you have invested into marking campaigns, spent thousands of pounds on a website, money in local papers, appearing at trade shows, and so on. You get the attention you need to drive revenue through your marketing efforts. GREAT! What a lot of business owners don’t understand (not you of course) is all this effort is useless unless their sales teams can execute sales by closing business and get money through the door. Sales are the only thing that makes profit and everything else is a cost, so it makes sense to fine tune the area of sales also.
Your sales teams are the heartbeat of your business. If the heartbeat stops, the rest of the organismwill not work and will die. You can have some other parts of the business not work so well – marketing, value creation, and so on. If you don’t have strong sales teams with the proper skills, then you’re just trying to push a stone up a hill.
Tip One: Buy each member of your sales team a book on sales (I would recommend Zig Ziglars: Secrets of closing the sale) and you, or, the manager of the sales team to read a small part (this needs to be delivered with energy) of a chapter that creates inspiration and to implement this strategy from the book into the sales team. This breaks monotony and keeps the job fresh and interesting for your sales teams.
My point and Final thought: If you or your sales manager cannot name three titles of sales books and the author on the spot then this exercise is a must!
Tip Two: Hire a sales coach. You need a professional from outside your business to help point out areas of improvement within your sales teams. Tiger Woods, Mohammed Ali, Michael Jordon, David Beckham, and many other great athletes all had / have coaches. These sportsman where the best in the business but still needed help to point out areas of improvement to beat the competition. You need the same and this should be looked on as a must do investment into your company. The ROI (return on investment) will be tenfold should you get a professional who knows what they’re doing. Don’t let your pride get in the way of good advice. Everyone needs help (even you) and a good consultant should be part of your team.
Don’t be fooled because you made x amount of revenue to date through sales that you don’t need a coach. You want to make sure that your success in sales in related to accurate skills that can sustain the test of time, and not down to luck or market conditions. Example: In the 2005 when we had the property bubble, many estate agents became incredibly wealthy over night through excess sales. This was nothing to do with accurate sales but down to both luck and market conditions. This was because of the excess fiat money (if this is the first time you heard this, my point is clear) created by the governments that was in circulation, and the public were able to get 100% mortgages, easier, than getting a credit card. Estates agents fees went through the roof and the majority of excess sales were made because of excess fiat money. However, in 2008 when the recession hit property prices began to fall as the banks stopped lending. As buyers became less available property prices froze or even dropped – leaving untrained estate agents scratching their heads – as the markets started to correct themselves and dishing out pain to untrained individuals.
My point and final thought – Get a coach!
Here is to your selling success.