There has been a huge disconnect between sales and marketing for years. Thankfully that is starting to change. More companies are now focusing on the SMarketing department… the combination of sales and marketing working together. As a result, companies are now experiencing marketing that is also based on the sales department’s feed back enabling them to provide sales with smart, warm leads.
However, there is another Great Disconnect that needs to be addressed if sales organizations are going to excel. This great disconnect is in that many senior managers don’t really understand what their sales people need do to generate sales in 2016. The C-Suite seems more focused on the results than on the process their sales teams employ.
Here are five common myths that many senior sales executives make about their sales organization:
Our Sales People Have Received Good Training
The reality is that most sales people are being trained to sell using methods and processes developed in the late 1990’s that are ineffective today. Sales people today need to transition from selling to co-creating.
They Accept that 80% of the Sales Force Brings in 20% of the Revenue
They fail to realize that this is unsustainable and that most of the 80% need to find other jobs. Those of the 80% who have exceptional skills in areas such as customer service, setting appointments, maintaining a CRM system, sales administration, etc. should be retained to support the top producers—the 20%. This will free up the top producers to focus more on new business development, collaborating and co-creating with customers, while enabling them to become trusted advisors to their customers.
They Seldom Have a Chief Sales Officer (CSO) Who Rose to the Top of the Company From Sales
Most companies who don’t have a CSO rely on a Chief Marketing Officer who has an MBA and no real sales experience and to whom senior sales managers report.
Yet most C-Level executives are the first to proclaim that their business is dependent on sales but don’t give it a representation in the C-Suite. Sales should have a seat in the C-Suite.
They Fail to Recognized That Both B-B and B-C Sales Have Become More Transactional and That the Role of the Sales Person is Being Marginalized Because of the Transparency of the Internet
Buyers value sales people who are there for them when they are ready to buy, when they need to collaborate, and when new products are being developed. They need a Buyer’s Agent to fill that role and Top Producing Sales People need to learn how to be viewed as that Agent.
They Continue to Cling to the Old Adage, “Sell the Sizzle, Not the Steak”.
Today’s sales people need to be experts in understanding the business challenges of their prospect’s and must be prepared to help them solve those challenges. In essence today’s sales person needs to be part of the complete buying process with their customers in order to help their customers find the best solution
Harrison Greene is the founder of Unique Selling Systems and works with senior management to develop the Sales People of the Future.
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