3 Reasons Your Sales Suck And How You Can Fix Them
We have all struggled with our sales process at some point…c’mon, we can admit it, we are all friends here. So it isn’t the struggles that I am going to tackle here, but the root causes that are often hiding in plain site and how you can overcome them to get your sales team and your personal sales back on track, quickly.
1. Not Meeting with Buyers: I’ve been in organizations where it didn’t matter what you were doing as long as you were “taking meetings” and it was killing the organization and the sales team. As a salesperson or sales manager, you shouldn’t be encouraging the type of activity that leads to taking meetings for meetings sake. You need to be taking meetings that are moving you towards a sale. This means you need to focus on economic buyers, people that have the ability to say yes.
2. Focusing on the Transaction: At the same time we are often focusing on “taking meetings” we also find ourselves too often paying lip service to the concept of “relationship selling” while really only focusing on the possibility of making one sale or a quick transaction…not developing a long term relationship. To overcome this challenge, I want you to spend a little bit of time thinking about how you can add value to your current clients and what you want the relationship down the road to look like. As Alan Weiss of the Summit Consulting Group says regularly, “focus on the 4th sale first.”
3. Focusing on Inputs, Not Outcomes: When you are in a sales slump or you just haven’t developed your sales techniques to their maximum, you can very easily get sidetracked to looking at the sales process and the client through the inputs your product or service will provide and it is a formula that is going to lead to long term failure, simple as that. Instead of focusing on inputs and features, you need to focus on the end goal, the output that the client is going to get from working with you on a project or by buying your product or service. Because it is much easier to get a client to authorize a project or expenditure that will provide a tangible and real return on investment, but much tougher to get the client to sign off on a bunch of activities that have very little perceived importance to the client’s bottom line.
If you are in a slump and you take a look at your last few weeks activities, I’m sure you will see some form of one of these issues causing you a lot of trouble…but since this isn’t an exhaustive list, I’d love to hear some of the challenges you are facing in your sales process.
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About Dave Wakeman
Dave Wakeman is a writer, speaker, and consultant. He currently is the principal of the Wakeman Consulting Group…a boutique consulting firm that focuses on working with organizations to achieve greater value from their investments of time and money. Dave is a featured writer for the Project Management Institute and appears monthly on their Voices blog.…