For those of you who read this blog on a regular basis you know how I feel about a sales process and metrics. Salespeople can’t and shouldn’t run a sales territory without them. Do you feel a “But” coming here? Let’s call this a modified “But”.
Earlier today I read an excellent article by Charles Green, which dates back to late 2007 but still very relevant. It’s worth the read because it reminds us that there is so much more to selling than the stats. And by stats I mean metrics. You have read in this blog that salespeople need to have a Sales Behavior Plan in order to have a sense for what activities they need to do to generate sales growth. I will stand by that until the cows come home but a behavior plan is worth nothing if the salesperson does not understand that people buy from people they trust.
Buyers and prospects have a nose for the salesperson who considers them another notch in their sales belt. Sitting in front of a prospect means that you are in their space and on their time. You are there for a reason, which they have decided is worth the time and energy to make an appointment. That 30-60 minute time period is the only chance you have to establish trust with this person. They may be part of your overall annual revenue plan but, first and foremost, they are an individual worth spending time with. They also may have a problem that you can help them solve and you will be allowed to solve that problem only if they feel comfortable with you.
Ultimately, sales will always come down to how people communicate and whether that communication “works” for both of them.
Sales is much like the proverbial three-legged stool that seems to pop up in every metaphor on the planet. One of the legs is your mindset. If you are not psychologically strong and without fear sales will eat you up. The second leg is goals. Without them salespeople work in a vacuum. The third leg is process, part of which is understanding the fundamentals of relationship building.
Thanks Charles for the reminder!
The Final Thought: “Common sense is the measure of the possible.” Henri Frederic Amiel