Sales Skills White Papers
More of Your Sales Reps Will Reach Quota
Sales Skills White Papers to Help Sales Management and Sales Professionals Achieve Even Greater Sales Success.
Sales Training Fails to Teach the Vital Skill of Handling Objections
Our latest research shows that 64% of salespeople fail to close. This is up from 62% in previous studies. Since 64% fail to ask for commitment (a much better term than “close,” for reasons I’ve explained elsewhere), logic dictates that the percentage of salespeople who can’t handle objections must be even higher—because you won’t even hear a customer’s objection unless you ask for the business. As a matter of fact, our data shows that more than 90% of salespeople are ineffective at uncovering and then resolving objections. This is a BIG problem! Since objections are present in most selling situations, it’s no wonder so many salespeople aren’t hitting quota.
Your Company seems to have all the right stuff. So, why aren’t you crushing your sales goals?
This white paper is going to explain some things about the nature of learning and behavior, and why those things matter desperately to salespeople and the companies that employ them. To put the discussion in context, let’s start with a true story.
Call it X Corp. You would recognize its real name. It is a highly respected, multi-billion-dollar company with more than 1,400 business-to-business salespeople worldwide…
Here’s what the best-run companies are doing.
Every business leader wants a productive, efficient, and effective sales organization—one that consistently hits quota. But, what we want and what we are actually getting are two very different things. While companies are chasing more aggressive goals and applying more pressure to hit them, several recent studies suggest that their efforts are falling short. Research by the Aberdeen Group finds that two-thirds of sales reps fail to hit quota and that 65% of B2B companies say their #1 challenge is sales productivity.
Why customer service training fails
Is your company investing in training for your customer service teams? I’m talking about training intended to sharpen the skills of employees who interact with your customers but are not part of your formal sales force. They work in functions with names such as customer service, customer support, technical support, marketing, account management, client services, help desk, inside sales, and others.
Sometimes we make things too darn complicated. I’ve always found that even though we may use very sophisticated methods for analyzing a business problem, in the end we find that the solution lies in the basics. That’s exactly what I saw when my company got involved with helping private-equity companies improve their win rates.
Every company wants to grow sales. Unfortunately, when sales training is deployed as a solution, it fails to deliver results 90% of the time. After decades of research, Big Data finally shows us what to do.
If you’re looking for sales training, New Big Data reveals the right approach to designing sales training that produces maximum business results. Are you asking any of these Big Questions?
- What sales skills are proven to create the greatest improvement in sales performance?
- How enormous is the sales skill deficiency that exists within my sales team?
- How can I tell which individuals on my team lack critical sales skills?
- Why is the ultimate solution to embed these selling skills in every customer-contact employee (not just salespeople)?
Selling can be taught. Sales performance can improve dramatically. But only if we treat selling as a skill—not a personality type, not a work style, not a gift.
Sales leadership might be the toughest job in any company. Like any executives, we have more work to do than time to do it. But, in sales, the stakes are incredibly high. Just like people need oxygen to survive, companies need top-line revenue; without the top line, there can’t be a bottom line. What’s more, in sales there is nowhere to hide: What’s more visible than a leader who isn’t hitting sales numbers?
A lot of people in the sales-training industry will tell you that the internet has revolutionized the salesperson’s role in ways that require you to do all sorts of outlandish things. So, what needs to change today about the way your company trains its sales teams?
Lately a lot of people in the sales-training industry have been making some pretty remarkable claims. As a jumping-off point, they usually start with this premise: Because customers now have so much access to information on the internet, the role of the salesperson has changed.
Hard to argue with that one, isn’t it? Things quickly get bizarre, however, because after pointing out so helpfully that the internet exists, these deep thinkers proceed to use the fact of the net’s existence to justify practically any claim that suits their purposes.
Maybe you walked into your new job to find a sales function that seems downright broken. Maybe every time you turn over a rock you find another ghastly problem. Maybe leading this new sales team is like herding cats. Or, maybe you’re luckier. Your new company isn’t actually dysfunctional.
So where do you place your priorities? What is the single most important thing you can do right now to begin to make sales revenue grow and ensure that your personal stock goes up, not down?
Discover five great ideas for tapping into your company’s hidden sales potential and how to avoid the pitfalls.
Investing in sales training for your sales force seems like a perfectly sensible business practice. It must be a smart thing to do; after all, sales training is estimated to be a billion-dollar industry. But this billion-dollar industry has a failure rate approaching 90%. So why would any company want to waste training dollars and everyone’s time doing something that has a one-in-ten chance of producing a significant payback?
Read this sales article to learn what you can do to get your business in the top 10% that have significant long-term gains from effective sales training.
Experience is a wonderful teacher, but only if you pay attention and draw the right lessons from your experience. It pays to document certain portions of your company’s sales process – and the most successful practices that you and your salespeople have found for generating successful sales relationships. Companies that do this increase their potential to maximize revenue, protect margins, and help their salespeople make more sales.
It is imperative to include six must-have elements in the content of your Best Sales Practices documentation. These elements have been proven to yield high sales success rates. Find out what they are and how to include them.
Most companies have no idea what their sales training is worth. If You Can’t Measure It, Don’t Do It!
Locked inside every company is an asset that represents its greatest investment opportunity and its best chance to achieve dramatic revenue gains. A dollar invested in this asset can return more than $3 in 90 days and almost $14 in a single year. Find out how one company grew profits by $2.4 million in 90 days.
Can Complex Selling Be Made Simple?
85% of selling situations are “complex.” That is, there are multiple buyer types to deal with and a selling process that involves several steps or milestones. Salespeople will be more effective if they learn how to uncover the decisive factors that are unique to each buyer. Download this sales article to learn more about multiple buyer types and how their different criteria, motivation, and needs affect how you should approach the sale.
How to Transform a Sales Force into a Loyalty Force – Article Featured in Future Pharmaceuticals vol. 3, 2009
Mike Capaldi, Associate Vice President for Sales Training and Leadership Development at sanofi-aventis, interviews Duane Sparks, Chairman and Founder of The Sales Board and creator and author of Action Selling, about the trends related to sales in the pharmaceutical field and how to transform a sales force into a loyalty force. This article is also available to listen to from our Sales Training Podcasts page.
How a New Breed of Sales Pros Can Change the Game
So-called experts claim that there are two types of business developers: Farmers and Hunters. You’re either one or the other. Consequently, you fit one type of sales position or the other: new account rep or current account rep. If you see anyone heading in the same direction on a topic like this, they are usually all wrong. This article explains the confusion on the hunter/farmer sales model and what you need to do to make the leap from Hunters and Farmers to 2.0 Sales Pros? Learn How To: Elevate your team’s performance Create a well-documented, effective sales process Train on the sales skills that have the most impact Transfer skills into consistent field success
How to Supercharge Your Sales
Supply Chain Services Inc. (SCS) of Stillwater, Minnesota is a small private company with about 25 employees. It is 11 years old. It does business-to-business sales. It faces many of the same challenges that your company probably does. Yet it has grown dramatically despite the rotten economy since the crash of 2008.
The full article details exactly how SCS got an enormous lift from sales training. How they changed Company Culture and positioned for even greater sales growth. Learn more about the success of SCS.
Escaping the Price Trap!
In today’s global economy, salespeople are under pressure like never before to match or beat lower prices from competitors, domestic and foreign. When they do, their sales margins shrink, resulting in lower profits for their companies and lower commission-based earnings for themselves. This white paper is about effective strategies salespeople can adopt to protect their profits and company margins when faced with the issue of reducing their price to win the sale.
What Top Performers Do That Others Don’t
Research shows that salespeople will never reach their full potential without using the right skills within a well-defined sales process. Unfortunately for many salespeople, knowing what selling skills to use and how/when to use them are like elusive secrets that are never exposed … Until Now! This white paper reveals the most common mistakes salespeople commit and how to get your sales force on the road to producing record-breaking sales.