Truth or myth?
In a recent article from Keith Francis of Evoluti he questions whether sales process is as powerful a facilitator of sales as we are led to believe. When a business implements a new sales process is it the attention given by the sales manager to sales people that is more responsible for increases in sales than the actual process?
One size doesn’t fit all.
There is a lot
of truth in that
but I tend toward the view that specific elements in process that relate to your products and the sector you work in are vital because selling financial services is not the same as selling technology and complex sales work differently to small scale sales. That aside
Francis goes on to say: “Experienced and successful sales people do not follow a set of predefined steps. They flex to meet the
specifics of the situation. They delve into their sales ‘tool bag’ to select the right tool for the specific situation or task, and not when they reach a predefined stage in a sales process.”
My own observations support this view especially where a solution or consultative selling approach is used.
Tailoring the sales process
People like me who make a living out of sales training love the idea of being able to teach a standard set of steps that inevitable lead to success but if we rely on this then we are under skilling our average players
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who need to learn knowledge and skills that enable them to be flexible at the point of contact with the customer. The potential rewards are great as high performers are generally 67% more productive than average sales people.* A validated process gives sales people a strategic overview of how the sale would proceed whilst leaving scope for creativity and adaption to buyer circumstances. The danger of not doing so is to abandon a sale because it does not conform to your sales process, blame the customer and move on or hang about at a process stage whilst someone else wins the deal.
Training skills and process
Today sales training is often process based but new and powerful data driven tools enable us to pinpoint our understanding of sales talent needs and allow a more creative approach
when developing the knowledge and skills that to coin a phrase takes a sales process from “good to great”.
If you would like to hear more about our approach email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a number and a time to call and I
will get back to you. www.sdvtraining.com
“The Sales Process Myth or best practice” by Keith Francis is published by Evoluti Research.
*Mckinsey War for talent 2000 survey