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TSE 1193: What are the 6 Critical Steps to Developing a Successful Sales

TSE 1193: The 6 Critical Steps To Developing a Successful Sales Strategy

Sales strategies aren’t born from thin air; rather, there are six critical steps to developing a successful sales strategy

Lance Tyson is an author and speaker who runs his own training company. Tyson Group has been ranked by Selling Powers as one of the Top 20 sales organizations in the world. It has been operating for 15 years and invested in Dale Carnegie Training in 2010. They work in the sports entertainment industry and one of their biggest customers is the football team, the Raiders. They coordinate with the sales team to sell premium tickets, sponsorships, suites, and others. His team also works with Michael Jordan’s company and several tech companies where they coach, train, and consult with sales teams. 

Lance isn’t just teaching; he is also out there grinding and doing all the sales work that his salespeople are doing. 

Six steps to developing a successful sales strategy 

Attitude, perseverance, and grit aren’t part of the steps. These things must always be present but let’s think of outcome first. In some cultures, the word relations isn’t great and it’s often overused. We prefer the term rapport.

This is one of the three outcomes you need to go after. Partner rapport with credibility. While rapport gives you influence, credibility gives you people’s trust. The third one is showing a level of understanding. These three are the beginning of the steps to developing a successful sales strategy which is the following: 

  • Connect
  • Evaluate
  • Diagnose
  • Prescribe
  • Dialogue
  • Close

The six critical steps to developing a successful sales strategy 

Connect

We talk about connecting with others all the time but the conversation of connecting is different today. You may be trying to deal with a level of preoccupation by the buyer. You have to connect with people via text, email, or voicemail and talk to people to build rapport. The fragmented conversations can be broken down and taken to connect step to overcoming preoccupation. This will lead to building rapport, credibility, and a  level of understanding. 

Evaluate

When you go to your doctor’s appointment, one of the first things they do is to evaluate you. The same is true in sales. We evaluate our prospects to determine whether they’re interested or not.

Other businesses call this assessment while some refer to it as an opportunity. Whatever you call it, it’s the step where salespeople deal with the inherent objection of disinterest.  

Diagnose and Prescribe

This is where salespeople make an educated guess. Ask yourself what they need most and do not forget about creating a level of comfort. A lot of salespeople walk in the door and make assumptions based on their grand experience, they then ask a few questions.

You need to talk to the clients through their feelings and their thoughts. You need to look at their past, their present, and the future to make a good diagnosis. After the evaluation and diagnosis, you make a prescription. 

Dialogue and Close 

After getting your prescription, your next step would probably be talking with your doctor and asking questions so as to get a clear understanding of your health problem.

In the same manner, after giving your prescription as a salesperson, your next step is to have a dialogue to overcome any form of objection. Ultimately, having every question answered, your next step is to close. 

Researcher or salesperson

The biggest challenge right now is the confusion that most salespeople are stuck in which happens in the connect step. Inside sales reps are responsible for prospecting. You can’t trust everything that’s written on LinkedIn and you can’t just get somebody without fact-checking what their bio says.

This creates a problem for sales reps because they often feel like they don’t have enough information to move forward. Thus, the confusion of whether to spend more time on researching about the prospects or looking for prospects to pitch. 

It gets harder because it takes at least six touches to get in contact with a target and another six to get an appointment. Salespeople are now trying to cheat the process and just connect because they’re exhausted. 

Many sales reps these days just sell their whole service in one move. They’d say it’s free and without obligation. This is a mistake that many salespeople make. Instead of getting on the phone and pouring it out in one go, sales reps must be patient and sell one piece at a time. 

If you can’t sell time, you can’t sell your products or services and that’s what people in sales lack: time.  

Getting better in evaluation 

We do a lot of sales assessment and we do predictive index studies on people to see where they’re weak and to know where to start on their training. We’ve seen that salespeople are often not good facilitators. What most salespeople do is spray and pray. They start asking questions right away without getting into the introduction stage of presenting what’s going to happen in this meeting. 

Salespeople can evaluate better if they learn how to facilitate and set things up better. Sales isn’t just about asking questions, it’s also about facilitating the meeting well and making good set-up. Evaluation is a back-and-forth process. You ask questions and they answer, all the while maintaining a good grip on where the conversation is going. 

On prescribing

There has to be a level of dramatization in prescribing. Salespeople need to make prospects understand that reason why they want what they want. Dramatize your pitch the way they want it. 

You are trying to overcome doubt in the prescribed step. So, describe your products and your services in a way that answers a few questions. Don’t just state facts. Learn to become a storyteller because that’s how you make them listen. 

Remember the six critical steps to developing a successful sales: you connect, then evaluate, then diagnose. After these, you make the prescription, have the dialogue, and close. Take your sales per process and see where you are and where you’re potential customers are. Make sure that both of you are on the same spot, if not, take a stop and go back or move forward.

“Steps To Developing a Successful Sales Strategy” episode resources 

Connect with Lance Tyson on Twitter, LinkedIn, and his website, Tyson Group

Don’t hesitate to connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook

Wanting to learn and hear more about sales? This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a program designed to help sales reps get from where they are now to where they can be in the future. Every seller should be making six figures and this can be achieved with our rigorous training schedule and group coaching. Join us for a new semester beginning each quarter. 

Sign up now and get the first two modules for free! You can also call us at (561)570-5077. 

Read more about sales or listen to audiobooks at Audible as well and explore this huge online library. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. One of the great books right now is the StoryBrand by Donald Miller, do give that a go. 

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Company Culture, Purpose, Josh Levine

TSE 1186 Write Your Company’s Obituary: Identify or Rediscover Your Company’s Purpose

Having to write your company’s obituary sounds a bit morbid but there’s a good reason why doing this is important. One result is that doing so will help you identify and rediscover your company’s purpose. 

Josh Levine is a culture company strategist and works with technology, social enterprise organizations, and firms to help them improve their work. His goal is to make the employees love what they’re doing by building strong relationships, higher trust, and deeper engagement. 

Josh published a book called Great Mondays: How to Design a Company Culture That Employees Love. It talks about all his learnings for the past 10 years in advancing the idea of company culture as a strategic advantage. It defined what culture is and gives people the tools that they need to improve the culture. 

Write your company’s obituary 

This was a tool that Josh’s mentor used and many clients would react negatively upon hearing it. There is more to sales than just putting the product out there and selling it. It’s more than just the numbers. Doing business isn’t only about the money; it’s also about understanding what you are trying to do with your company and with your life. 

This is also about knowing your own purpose and helping the organization discover its  ‘why?’ 

Imagine that your business closes its doors after 30 years. Don’t think of the reason why it shut down. Your goal is to write down two or three short paragraphs about why your company will be remembered and will be most missed. This will give you the opportunity to see what you achieved that made the difference. 

Josh’s team works with a board executive team and leadership peers together. They make teams write because what matters isn’t just the end result. They also consider the kind of language, the words, and the phrases used together. 

Obituary exercise

Don’t stop short of the fantastic. When you start writing your company obituary, you need to go beyond how far you think you can make it. 

The point of the exercise is to come up with your achievements and look for the possible ways that you’re going to achieve those. 

Josh had a client who said that they would solve poverty. It’s a far-fetched goal and impossible to do but it didn’t keep them from aiming to do so. When the discussion happened, the team thought of how to make it work and figured out that their technology connects communities together. The community that works together will solve poverty. With that, their previously written achievement of solving poverty now sounds plausible. 

Define your purpose

Next, you have to define your purpose. The company’s values are the hows and the company’s purpose are the whys. Businesses and companies need to figure out the why behind what they’re doing. You won’t be able to find your purpose if you’re thinking about this quarter’s return or this quarter’s sales number. 

As a sales leader, you can help define the purpose by shaping the culture of your company according to the company’s vision. You can help strengthen the team and find the values and purpose of the company over time. 

Components of a company’s culture 

There are six components mentioned in the book Great Mondays. The first three are as follows: 

  • Purpose
  • Values
  • Behaviors

The first two define the company’s purpose and values. The third component is the behaviors. Behavior is the center point of culture and is what you are trying to adjust to help people make better business decisions. 

The next three are the following: 

  • Recognition
  • Rituals
  • Cues

Recognition and rewards have been used in businesses. These are effective strategies in aligning behaviors to build and strengthen the synapses of culture. Your goal is to spread your culture and share the behaviors. 

Keep reminding your peers why they’re in the business and getting the people back to the top of the pyramid. Love what you and find something that you believe in to make everything worthwhile. 

“Write Your Company’s Obituary” episode resources

Great Mondays: How to Design a Company Culture That Employees Love is available on Amazon. The purpose of the Write your company’s obituary exercise is laid out in the book. 

You can download the supporting materials for free at free@greatmondays.com. You can also sign up for newsletters, one minute Monday, and case studies.  We will e-mail you all the necessary information for building cultures that matter. 

Connect  with Josh Levine via Twitter and LinkedIn. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

For sales concerns, you can shoot us your question anytime. Connect with Donald via LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Sales Leaders, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C. Kelly

TSE 1181: 3 Things Leaders Do To Hurt Sales Rep Relationships

 

 

Sales Leaders, The Sales Evangelist, Donald C. Kelly

Sometimes, there are 3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships and most times, they do it unintentionally. This is especially hard because sales leaders and sales reps spend a lot of time together. A bad leader can negatively affect how a sales rep makes his sell. While a good leader helps how sales reps can improve their sales. 

Marc Levine founded his ImprovMySales business four years ago. The company is dedicated to creating wonderful and profitable places to work. Before this business venture, Marc was part of a sales team as a national account executive and technology and professional services. For the last 16 years, he has been developing leaders and teams, teaching people communication skills, selling services to certain companies including Citibank, Prudential, and Best Buy.  

3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships

There are probably more, but let’s focus on just the three things for now. 

  • A leader does not create a psychologically safe environment
  • The leader forgets about humanity 
  • The leader is emotionally unintelligent

August has been a leadership month and people have been talking about the important things to become a good sales leader. This involves setting a vision and becoming a good coach. It’s about creating a culture where sales reps can thrive and succeed. 

When a leader fails to create that safe environment, the sales relationship takes a hit. 

By definition, psychological safety was a term coined by the social psychologist, Amy Edmonson. Google did a two-year study and analyzed the qualities of its most effective teams. The results of the study have shown that teams promoting psychological safety produced better revenues and their team members stayed in the work longer than others. Psychological safety is a team norm that says it’s safe to take risks, to be vulnerable, to ask for help, and to disagree with the rest of the team. 

When you do, you won’t be ostracized for disagreeing but instead, you’ll be honored and validated. 

An environment where sales leaders can thrive

As a parent, when your kid doesn’t understand something, you want your kid to feel safe to come to you and ask for help without getting embarrassed. The same is true in sales. As a leader, you need to develop a team where your members can be honest and can come forward when they don’t understand something. 

You want your team members to come to you about their problems early on in the sales cycle rather than at the end of it where the deal is falling apart. This is the essence of psychological safety. 

It’s an environment where people can ask for help, be vulnerable, take risks, and be supported 

Create a psychologically safe environment 

This doesn’t happen overnight. It happens when your sales reps come to you asking for help and instead of reacting, you validate and support them. Do it a couple of times for the team members to realize that you want to help them. 

Sales leaders also need to stop blaming the team members. Blame and accountability are two different things. 

Blaming makes the blamed feel bad and threatened. It’s when sales leaders bombard the reps with questions like: 

  • Why didn’t you hit the quota last month?
  • What are the reasons why you lost that sale?
  • Why aren’t you doing this?

These questions foster negativity. Accountability helps you raise the team’s standard without making the reps feel bad. It’s more like saying, “Hey you didn’t hit your quota last month and I know you’re disappointed. Let’s talk about what happened that may have contributed to this and let’s figure out the solutions.” Build an environment where your members can be comfortable in having a dialogue. 

As a sales leader, you also need to admit your own mistakes. Research shows that when you admit your mistakes, the people around you will come close and will open up about theirs as well. 

There’s power in vulnerability and when you use that power, you will see your sales team come closer and open up to you. 

Leaders forget about humanity 

The next in the list of the 3 things leaders do to hurt sales rep relationships is forgetting about humanity. 

Salespeople are like stand-up comedians. We go out there showing confidence knowing that we’re going to be rejected. We are a fragile group. When sales leaders remember the humanity of the people on their team, the members tend to go above and beyond. The members put in incremental efforts. 

Sales leaders also need to stop making the team members like little versions of themselves. Every member is unique with their own set of skills and strengths. Forcing things that you do well onto them will make them feel resentful. Instead, honor their strength. Validate the things that they do well to make them feel excited and engaged. Make them feel heard and understood. 

Remember that you are working with human beings who have hopes and fears. and get scared. Honor that part of them. 

Build strong relationships with your sales team

Sales leaders need to build strong relationships with their team and practice emotional intelligence. Daniel Goleman wrote in his book Working with Emotional Intelligence that people with emotional intelligence are more successful in their careers than those who are just relying on pure intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and regulate your own feelings to understand and empathize with the feelings of others. As a sales leader, you need to be aware of your emotional triggers to be able to manage them. If you fail to develop that, you can easily be overtaken by your emotional triggers and start to judge your team. 

These triggers tend to show up again and again and these are no surprises. 

Some of the triggers are when your sales rep didn’t hit the quota or when someone in your team isn’t adapting to the new technology, and when someone’s not putting something into the CRM.

So, list your triggers and think of all the situations and the people that trigger the fight, flight, or freeze responses.  

The sales team and all its members are the backbones of an organization. We want them to feel empowered and we can’t make that happen if we don’t provide them an environment where they can thrive and if we keep blaming them. Have conversations with them and make them feel good so that they’d want to produce for you. 

“3 Things Leaders Do To Hurt Sales Rep Relationships” episode resources

Connect with Marc at improvmysales.com or reach him at (718) 637-7890. 

If you like this episode, don’t be shy and give us a thumbs up and rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify. We produce podcasts weekly so make sure to subscribe to get more of these sales talks that matter! Share this with your friends and teach them how to subscribe as well. 

This episode is brought to you in-part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program. It’s a helpful guide for sales reps and sales leaders to improve their pitches and presentations. It has 12 courses and you can get the first two modules for free! If you want to take your sales to the next level, then I recommend that you join us with our group coaching. 

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

If you’re a reader who loves reading and listening to books, you can also check out Audible as well and explore this huge online library with thousands of books. Register now to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. 

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound

Sales Coaching, Motivation, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 1158: The Actions High-Growth Coaches Use To Motivate Their Teams

Sales Coaching, Motivation, The Sales Evangelist

While proper mindset is important, the actions high-growth coaches use to motivate their teams to allow those teams to succeed in sales.

Sarah Wirth works for EcSell Institute and studies sales leadership. Along with her team, they look at the coaches in the organizations they work with knowing that great coaches help teams to achieve better results. 

Sarah travels the globe studying different teams and applying the best practices they can teach to sales leaders. Their research-based teachings on best practices are grounded in fact rather than opinion. 

Misconceptions about coaching 

One of the common misconceptions about coaching relates to the timing of team meetings or sales coaching. Most sales leaders do team meetings weekly thinking that getting everyone together via phone makes the team effective. Based on the study, however, the best sales leaders have their meetings once a month rather than once a week. The monthly meeting is much more interactive and educational than the weekly kind of communication. 

Sales reps want an interactive educational team meeting where they can hear what the other departments are doing. They also want to hear and learn the best practices used by others in the company. They don’t want to sit and hear all the updates of what’s going on, because those things can be sent and read via mail. 

Instead, sales reps want a certain level of engagement and content to share during meetings. This content is difficult to achieve when you meet every single week. A longer time frame gives birth to more stories and more experiences to share, which results in meaningful and substantive conversations where everyone on the team learns things. 

Learning from experience 

Sellers like to learn the best practices, so they listen to podcasts. They want to learn from people from different fields who bring radical and neat insights that they’re not aware of. 

The interviews and surveys of salespeople reveal that they don’t want to hear the biggest deals. Instead, they want to hear how to get big deals. They want answers to the objections they encounter and tips to make presentations that help them win deals. They want to hear and learn the stories of how others became successful. 

It’s more of knowing what they did and how they did it. 

Salespeople want to be the best version of themselves. They aren’t into sales because of charity. They are in sales because they want to help their families and their clients. 

Most sales leaders are promoted to their position because they were good salespeople. They go from the bottom to the top without getting any formal training, education, and information on how to become good sales leaders. They learn from experience, and that’s why they become successful. Unfortunately, they don’t know how to transfer all these learnings to their peers so their team can be successful and achieve better sales. 

Motivate the team

There are three actions high-growth sales coaches use to motivate their team

  • Team meetings done in the right frequency and format
  • One-on-one meetings with each of the team members
  • Feedback on what they’re doing well and what they can improve

These three are effective ways to help salespeople grow and improve their skills. 

One-on-one meetings 

One-on-one weekly meetings with each team member are as effective as doing one-on-one meetings every other week. Aside from the frequency, it is also important to follow a consistent structure. 

The best sales leaders start their meetings with personal updates in the life of the salesperson they are talking to. They talk about how their family is doing, and if they’re working from home, sales leaders ask for updates on their projects. Sales leaders spend a few minutes connecting with their team members as people. They show that they care not only as a sales producer but also as a person. 

The coaching and mentoring from one-on-one meetings change a salesperson’s motivation and attitude towards his work. It ignites a fire in him that helps the team meet its sales goals. Even books can’t do this because no matter how good the contents of the books are, the pages can’t hear their ideas or challenge them with questions. There is no substitute for talking through what’s going on in their sales territory or getting their input on the strategies that they’re pursuing. 

Asking imploring questions during one-on-one meetings breeds in-depth conversations that are helpful for both parties to grow. 

Do one-on-one meetings with your salespeople either weekly or bi-weekly depending on what works best for your team. 

Give feedback 

Give your team members feedback on their selling skills regularly. After successfully closing an important deal with your salespeople, debrief them, and discuss what you saw in their selling skills. Talk about what aspect they did well in the presentation and point out the things they can improve. 

There is no better time to improve your team’s skills than seeing its members in action. When you see them do what they do best, you can talk conceptually around them. You can coach them on how to answer objections and even do roleplays to address different situations. 

When you travel with your salespeople and see them in selling situations, you also learn how they interact with their customers, build rapport, present information, answer questions, direct conversations, and figure out the needs of the customers. You have the first-hand experience and you’ll know how to assess them on the things they’re doing well and how they can improve. 

This is also a great opportunity for the salespeople to receive coaching from their leaders. They can see the things they need to work on from your perspective. This is beneficial for them and for the business. 

Your team members may have the tendency of reporting only the good things that went down on a deal, excluding the challenges and how they addressed them. They may tweak the information they give you. When you are with them, you get to see them and give them the corrections and guidance they need. Sales leaders can also point out the effective things their salespeople did during the sales call. They can then repeat what they did in their future deals. 

Career discussion 

Career discussion is critical to a salesperson’s motivation as well as his career longevity on the team. Many sales leaders shy away from doing this because they don’t have specific paths for their salespeople. 

There often isn’t a specific role that salespeople can be promoted to. Sometimes, salespeople don’t have goals other than being individual performers. They like to be in sales and not in other roles such as managers. 

Based on research, a salesperson tends to make progress toward his career development goals and stay with the organization longer if the manager helps him make progress. Aside from that, salespeople tend to be motivated when they receive help from their superiors. 

Management often doesn’t talk about things like this to its employees, causing them to feel stuck in whatever position they are in. It kills their motivation to achieve more in their careers. 

Ask your salespeople how they feel about their careers or what they potentially want to do. You can’t assume that they’re doing okay; instead, draw the answers from them. Sarah Wirth and Bill Ekstrom’s book The Coaching Effect was the result of a career development discussion that Sarah did with him. He asked Sarah about her longterm big picture goals and she said that she’d like to write a book. It wasn’t anything serious for her at that moment. It was merely an idea. Fast forward to when they started really doing it and it happened. 

Go outside your comfort zone 

Another effective action that sales leaders can do is to get their team members outside their comfort zones. 

Help your sellers be comfortable with discomfort. If you can get them outside of their comfort zones, they’re more likely to learn, grow, and develop. #SalesTeam

Most of us want to be on the safe side and gravitate toward what we know but this is not helpful if we want to grow. The same is true for your team members. New roles or situations force your team members to learn, grow, and get better in order to handle the new challenges. Get your team members outside their comfort zones on a regular basis, especially if you see them starting to stagnate and get comfortable in their roles. 

 

The Actions High-Growth Coaches Use To Motivate Their Teams” episode resources

Learn more about connecting with your salespeople today. Visit Ecsell Institute’s website to learn more.  

If you’re a sales rep looking to hone your craft and learn from the top 1% of sellers, make plans to attend the Sales Success Summit in Austin, Tx, October 14-15. Scheduled on a Monday and Tuesday to limit the impact to the sales week, the Sales Success Summit connects sellers with top-level performers who have appeared on the podcast. Visit Top1Summit.com to learn more and register! 

You can also read more books to become a savvy salesperson and sales leader in Audible, your online library that houses over a thousand books. Register now to get a free book and a free 30-day trial by typing in audibletrial.com/tse

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program, designed to help sales reps and sales teams improve their skills in finding the right customers, identifying the activities and strategies that work, and asking the right questions to build strong value and close business deals. Get the first two courses for free at thesalesvengelist.com/freecourse

Which of the three actions have you tried in your team? Tell us about it in the comment section in Apple podcast. Your rating is equally appreciated, too. Share this with your colleagues who are using other podcast platforms as well including Google Podcast, Stitcher, and Spotify

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Sales Leader, Revenue, Activities

TSE 1152: Managing Tasks as a Leader

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Sales Leader, Revenue, ActivitiesManaging tasks as a leader is difficult because all the tasks are urgent and you have the internal battle of deciding which tasks need your attention. 

You might have a meeting with recruiters about the hiring, or you’ve got to do an interview with some sales reps, or you’ve got to create a report for the VP, and other equally important stuff. The list could go on and on and in the end, you aren’t able to get anything done to bring in more revenue. 

The challenge 

As team leaders, the best thing we can give to the sales rep is our care and utmost concern. Unfortunately, though, things don’t go the way we plan due to minute tasks that bog us down. Team leaders are faced with the challenge of managing their time to do the things that will impact the entire team in a good way. 

The grumpy sales manager syndrome 

The grumpy sales manager syndrome is nothing new and you might have experienced an episode of it once or twice. You are the leader so it’s natural to be bombarded with so many things to do: 

  • make reports 
  • attend meetings with sales reps 
  • meet with recruiters
  • meet with marketing folks

You are swamped with many different tasks and it’s overwhelming you.

Mike Weinberg mentioned this in his book Sales Management Simplified where he discussed all the different sales management myths and challenges. He then explained it in a way that’s both understandable and relatable. In the book, he said that this problem stems from the executive

level. 

Company owners or VPs are usually the reason sales managers have a tough time in juggling all their duties and this has nothing to do with the reports they are asking for. Rather, it has to do with the culture that is set within an organization. Executives, for example, aren’t focused on sales and so they don’t do everything in their power to cater to the sales effort. 

First line of defense

All the departments in a company or organization are important for the entire operation to work successfully. The marketing team, the development team, and all the other departments you can name are imperative for the organization to thrive. But all these other departments won’t be getting any money unless the sales team brings in more revenue. 

Sellers are the ones out there who are battling it out against the others. That is a huge amount of weight for the sales team because if it can’t happen, the company may fire the sales leaders for the lack of good results. 

Salespeople are foundations of a successful company and failing to recognize that is a problem.  We need a culture that is built around salespeople. 

Rate the tasks accordingly

Sales managers don’t necessarily have a defined role and instead, they have interconnecting roles within the organization.  For example, if you are helping the team generate revenue, then all your tasks must be related to that. But that’s not always the case. 

To define your goal, try to list the things that you do on a day-to-day basis and rate these activities from 1 to 5. (1 if the task isn’t helping you in fulfilling your goal, 5 if the activity is directly related to accomplishing your goals).  For instance, a one-to-one meeting with your sales rep to help the CS team increase its revenue is a full 5 rating. The meeting is an opportunity for you to give pipeline reviews with the sales rep to help him close more deals.  

Going on key account calls and weekly sales meetings are income-generating tasks and are closely tied to your goals. 

Housekeeping

On the other spectrum, you can have others complete tasks such as cleaning your inbox, creating spreadsheets to track sales and metrics, and attending meetings not related to your role. Or, if you prefer, do these tasks in your downtime. If you want to clean your inbox, then do it in your downtime. If you want a spreadsheet, then use CRM. And, if you want to attend the meetings unrelated to your task, you can jump in for a few minutes to check how it’s going instead of sitting down the whole two hours. 

Assess the tasks and if it’s possible to get an assistant to help you, then hire one. There are several platforms like Upwork where you can find somebody who can do something for you on a project basis.  Rating your tasks will make your work more efficient and will give you time for the more important things. 

Focus on the important ones

Ask yourself a series of questions before proceeding to every task. 

  • Am I needed at the meeting? 
  • Will it run effectively if I am not there? 
  • Will this task help my goal in increasing revenue? 
  • Rate the tasks and pick the ones that are most important by focusing on threes, fours, and fives. 

Fives are the obvious things that must happen. Set down the time for your meetings: time for the one-on-one, time for talking to your sellers, and all the other activities that are immediate. You might want to do the interviewing for new hires on a weekly basis or you might want to review resumes on a monthly basis. 

You must decide the schedules for the different activities and follow through. 

In this way, you can focus on the things that you need to and not be around for things that you don’t need to be a part of. You can also set a time to motivate your team and raise their morale by going to weekly or monthly lunch. 

Time is important 

Time is important and your sales reps need your time in closing deals and making sure that they’re overcoming challenges and working effectively. 

You are the coach and the sales reps are the players, and the only way for the team to work out is if both the coach and the players work hand-in-hand. If you are bogged down, hiding behind paperwork, and locked up in an office without a chance to connect with your reps, then you are never going to reach your goals. 

Applying this to The Sales Evangelist team helped me set the right culture as a leader of an organization. 

Money comes through the door when you are focused only on the things that you need to do.

“Managing Tasks as a Leader” episode resources 

Sales managers and leaders have different strategies in managing their tasks. If you have a story, don’t hesitate to drop me a message or tag me on LinkedIn, Donald C. Kelly. 

Check out Mike Weinberg’s book, Sales Management Simplified

This episode is brought to you in part by TSE Certified Sales Training Program which aims to help sales reps and sales team improve their skills in finding the right customers and knowing the strategies and activities that work. The program also teaches you the right questions to ask in order to build strong values and close huge deals. Go to thesalesevangelists.com/freecourse to get the first two episodes for free.

Audible is also a great avenue for sales learning. It has thousands of books that you can read

and audiobooks to listen that can help you to grow as a savvy salesperson. 

Give it a go to get a free book and a 30-day free trial. Just type in audibletrial.com/tse. If you enjoyed this episode and learned from it, please do give us a review 5-star rating on Apple podcast. You can also share this podcast with your friends and colleagues who are using other platforms such as Google Podcast, Stitcher, Spotify

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

FSMSDC, Storytelling, Leadership

TSE 1098: Storytelling and Leadership

 

FSMSDC, Storytelling, LeadershipI often learn from entrepreneurs and I discovered a lot about storytelling and leadership recently during the Florida State Minority Development Council’s expo. On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we’ll hear from two of the entrepreneurs I met there.

The best leaders learn from past leaders, whether the leadership was good or bad. CJ Latimore and Gustavo Hermida work in two different industries, but the things they share here apply no matter what industry you’re selling in.

Urban development

CJ Latimore is a public art specialist who characterizes his work as “telling stories through architecture and urban development.” He says it’s about hanging on to cultural icons even after certain buildings have been torn down.

He boils it down to adding a soul to buildings. It’s one thing to have a building that’s structurally sound but CJ believes it’s vital to track the communities and demographics that existed in the building before it was torn down. Very often, when a building is torn down to make way for something new, the previous demographic is forgotten. So is their story.

Storytelling

CJ says it’s possible to tell a story without saying a single word, and he points to art as the mechanism.

We must bring people together more efficiently and create a sense of timelessness along the way. Begin by getting people to hear your story.

Sales reps often try to add value to the company without even knowing anything about you or developing rapport with you.

Business etiquette

Consider this situation from a business etiquette perspective. If you don’t know me and you don’t know what my story is about, how can you act to help me? How can you add value?

CJ’s mission is to build images to help people get what they want in a prestigious way. When he shares that with people, they often ask to hear more. And when you can get people to say they want to hear more, they’re ready for your story.

Survival thinking

He said his biggest challenge was lack of awareness. Because the human brain is hard-wired to think about food, shelter, and clothing, stories that don’t incorporate those ideas can get lost.

The answer, he said, is to be creative. Tell a story that will make people focus on something else even briefly.

In this case, many people don’t readily know what they can do with art. Perhaps it doesn’t make sense to them. They don’t go to shows or museums.

The trick is to incorporate your uniqueness and associate it with food, shelter, and clothing.

Survival and storytelling

Everyone has pain and the quickest way to get someone to listen to you is to provide a solution to help their pain go away. You’ll have their immediate attention because no one wants to be in pain.

If you can share a way to save money, save time, or educate your prospect about saving money or time, that’s what everyone wants.

People want more time with their family and more time for vacation. Your job is to stop people in their tracks with the solutions you offer.

People will remember you more if you’re unique and if there’s something about you that’s meaningful.

If it’s true that the brain has as many as 300 impulses per minute, you have to find a way to engage three or four of those with your story.

Other people telling your story

When you can get other people to tell your story for you, that’s an indication that you have a great story and that you’ve told your story well. People love to spread a good story.

Since the beginning of time, people have shared the greatest historical events through story.

Start with your story and turn it into a community story. Own your story. Compile multiple stories that work and make them your own. Make them exceptional. Give people the results that they need.

Company values

Gustavo Hermida said that his biggest struggle has always been aligning his company with the right people who will carry the company’s values forward. His goal is to find people with integrity who make a promise and then deliver on it. It’s important because people often distrust salespeople automatically.

But people are people, and buying people are people.

He has built a career on putting himself in other people’s shoes to understand what will help the other person feel comfortable making a decision or able to move a partnership forward.

Finding the right people

He expanded his search to include looking elsewhere for the right people. Although previous experience was a welcome factor, it wasn’t the main qualifier he was looking for.

He discovered that he preferred hiring the right person and then forming that person.

Company growth

Gustavo started the company with zero base and limited financial resources. Over the last two years, the company has made the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing companies in America.

He caters to small startup companies because when it comes to multifunction equipment, sometimes leasing companies won’t offer financing to companies until they’re fully established.

He helps those companies build their own credit, which has catapulted his company in terms of growth.

Gustavo advises being very careful about the people that are working for you. Ensure that they share your company values. Build a team of different ages and different backgrounds.

Motivation comes in many different forms, but find people who are self-motivated. Build a team you’re proud to work with.

“Storytelling and Leadership” episode resources

You can connect with CJ at www.myuniqueawards.com.

Connect with me at donald@thesalesevangelist.com.

Try the first module of the TSE Certified Sales Training Program for free.

This episode is brought to you by the TSE Certified Sales Training Program. I developed this training course because I struggled early on as a seller. Once I had the chance to go through my own training, I noticed a hockey-stick improvement in my performance.

TSE Certified Sales Training Program can help you out of your slump.

If you gave a lot of great presentations and did a lot of hard work, only to watch your prospects choose to work with your competitors, we can help you fix that. The new semester of TSE Certified Sales Training Program begins in April and it would be an absolute honor to have you join us.

Tools for sellers

This episode is also brought to you in part by mailtag.io, a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that allows you to track and schedule your emails. It’s super easy, it’s helpful, and I recommend that you try it out. You’ll receive real-time alerts anyone opens an email or clicks a link.

Mailtag.io allows you to see around the corners. You can see when people open your email, or when they click on the link you sent. Mailtag.io will give you half-off your subscription for life when you use the Promo Code: Donald at check out.

I hope you enjoyed the show today as much as I did. If so, please consider leaving us a rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode. Share it with your friends who would benefit from learning more.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Sales Training, Donald Kelly, Sales Manager

TSE 1002: What If I Train Them And They Leave?

Sales Training, Donald Kelly, Sales ManagerMany leaders avoid adequately training their team members because of a single looming question: What if I train them and they leave?

They structure their businesses so that multiple people work on a single project while other projects sit undone. It costs them money and productivity.

If you’re one of those managers, I’ll offer you a different consideration: what if you don’t train them and they stay?

We’re devoting the month of January to the topic of mental toughness, and today’s topic is directed at business and sales leaders as well as sellers.

Leaders

When team members aren’t trained well, they won’t be effective at their jobs. When team members aren’t effective at their jobs, the manager will have to help them do their jobs in addition to doing his own.

Leaders who fear employee departure often choose not to provide the necessary training, but the reality is that many of those untrained employees end up staying in their jobs. [3:37]

What if they stay with you and they don’t know what they are doing?

Financial considerations

Imagine your employee makes $40,000 a year. Are you willing to pay him $40,000 despite the fact that he doesn’t know what he’s doing, and then require someone who is making $60,000 a year to help him do his job?

Maybe you’ll eventually fire the person because he isn’t performing. [04:23]

When you let someone go, you may end up paying unemployment benefits, and then you’ll incur the cost of hiring someone new.

Whether you use an agency or review the resumes yourself, you’ll have to invest time trying to find someone who already has training.

Cyclical

Even if your new hire does have sales training, she won’t know your process. She won’t be able to perfectly understand your organization, so she won’t immediately be effective.

If you choose not to provide training, you’ll be back in the same cycle three months after you hire her. [05:04]

You will have spent countless amounts of money to avoid spending money on training. You’ll suffer from lost opportunity and lost revenue.

Long-term benefits

Imagine you have three employees. After you train them, one of them leaves your organization.

First of all, consider why the person is leaving. Is it possible that you’re not paying enough? Does your organization lack direction for its employees? Don’t miss a chance to evaluate why people are leaving. [06:36]

Even if you have a great situation, people may still leave. They may have to move out of state for family reasons or something else. People don’t stay in one place forever.

If one leaves, you still have two great employees who are giving you money back.

If you don’t train them, you’ll likely lose thousands in sales because they aren’t good at their jobs.

Do the math

When I was a young seller, I worked for a company that spent probably $7,000 training me to be an effective seller, and I’m thankful for it.

After my training, I landed a $30,000 deal as one of my first big successes. [07:52]

You don’t have to be a scientist to understand that $30,000 is a good return on $7,000.

If you invest in your people, they’ll love you, they’ll stay with your company, and they’ll earn you more money.

For sellers

When you’re considering your next organization, find out what kind of sales training they provide. Even if you’re a seller with a 10-year track record, it’s ok to consider training programs at prospective companies. [08:58]

If they don’t offer coaching or continuing education, that might be a red flag. If they aren’t willing to invest in you, consider other organizations that will.

Do it yourself

Sales leaders might consider providing the training themselves as a way to save money, and it might be true that they’re able to do it. For me, though I’m able to change my own oil and cut my own hair, I don’t do it. [10:21]

Just because we’re capable of something doesn’t mean we’re the best person for the job. Consider the opportunity costs and the cost for you to stop your own work in order to train other people.

Give them podcasts to listen to or books to read.

Don’t hurt your company by trying to save a dime.

“What If I Train Them And They Leave?” episode resources

This episode is brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach. It allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

Previously known as TSE Hustler’s League, our TSE Certified Sales Program offers modules that you can engage on your own schedule as well as opportunities to engage with other sellers in other industries.

This episode is brought to you in part by mailtag.io, a Chrome browser extension for Gmail that allows you to track and schedule your emails. It’s super easy, it’s helpful, and I recommend that you try it out.

You’ll receive real-time alerts anyone opens an email or clicks a link.

I hope you enjoyed the show today as much as I did. If so, please consider leaving us a rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode, and share with your friends!

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

David DeRam, It Factor, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, Company Culture

TSE 981: Creating an It Factor Culture

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we’re going to hear from David DeRam, CEO and co-founder of Greenlight Guru, about the “it” factor, and how it can change the culture in any organization.

Culture

At Greenlight Guru, David and his team spend a lot of time focusing on culture. He calls the company culture unique, but he says that culture doesn’t fall down on you like rain. You don’t experience culture; you participate in it.

Leaders can think about culture and work to create culture, but leaders can’t execute culture. It’s like a plant that will grow the way that it grows, and if everyone isn’t on board with the culture, the culture won’t grow the way leaders want it to. [4:51]

As a result, David’s team looks to everyone on the team to get involved and participate in the culture.

People will work how they feel, and if they feel great, they’ll bring an entirely different energy to their efforts.

Profession

David’s team intentionally calls work your profession. He points to the fact that the leaders in every industry, (think Tiger Woods, Warren Buffet, Jimi Hendrix) have devoted themselves to their work. Their work is their profession. [6:35]

Listeners of this podcast have devoted their lives to sales and it’s their profession. Your profession isn’t just what you do; it’s what you believe. David’s team has worked to bring all of those aspects into the culture.

Companies tend to focus on results, and by focusing on results you can miss the one thing you desire the most, which is the people, culture, and execution.

“It” factor

David became immediately aware of the “it” factor when he subbed as a coach for a little league baseball team. As soon as he encountered the players on the team, he could tell who the natural athletes were.

They moved naturally. They were confident. The true players were like fish in water.

David took the lessons he learned from that sports experience and moved them into his business. He prioritizes where people aim in order to find leaders.

Setting the bar high for yourself can create a lot of stress, anxiety, and uncertainty. People with the “it” factor know how to set the bar high because they understand that the vision they create is more exciting than the fear they experience as a result of setting it there. [9:46]

You can feel the “it” factor when you meet people. They have reached high levels in everything they’ve done and they have a lot of swagger. They’ve survived a lot of hardship.

Alligator blood

One of the company’s core values is something it calls “alligator blood,” which refers to those people who are resistant to the endless psychological blows, and competitive enough to keep pounding away on others when they are ahead.

Not everyone is wired that way. You can coach it and build it, but when you find the “it” factor, you’re in the right place.

The people who love the struggle and who set the bar really high for themselves exude an energy that spreads to the people around them. [12:21]

Teaching culture

David’s team focuses on the medical device industry. It’s a tough industry with a complicated product and a complicated regulatory environment, and the rules are constantly changing.

Instead of spending time talking about how hard the work is, the company focuses on true quality and being great. They take a one-game-at-a-time mentality, knowing that you can’t win the Super Bowl in week 1. [17:09]

Because the team understands that there’s a long way to go, it’s able to focus on execution.

David’s hiring process strives to bring people to the team who naturally fit that culture. Some personalities might work really well in other industries, but not in David’s industry.

It’s not in the company’s DNA to have a bad actor in the company.

The best way to destroy a company is from the inside. The same is true of building it. David’s team measures its success partly by whether the entire team is living the core values.

Culture shift

If you discover that your culture isn’t exactly where you’d like it to be, begin inside the organization. [19:50]

People who have had to perform in the past and really put themselves out there for the good of the team (like authors, musicians, and athletes) often make great recruits.

If a person doesn’t fit your core values, no matter how talented he is, you will have to unravel a huge mess if you hire him.

Raising the level of play

People with the “it” factor have a combination of God-given ability, work ethic, fun, and what David calls bounce. [20:57]

They win battles, they win games, they overcome odds, they win championships, and along the way, they raise the energy and the level of play for the people around them.

The team gets better, and the players respond and get better. When that happens, you’ve got something really special.

“It Factor” episode resources

David’s team is always hiring people who want to play at the highest level. If you’re interested in figuring out whether you’re a good fit, you can connect with David’s team at www.greenlight.guru on the careers page. [21:55]

You can also connect with David on his LinkedIn page.

This episode is brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach and it allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

We’ll use prospect.io in the upcoming semester of TSE Hustler’s League to focus on prospecting. We’ll give you insights and tools that will help you gain new customers. In addition, we’ll provide training and strategies that you can implement today to ensure constant flow in your pipeline.

Check out our new semester of The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League. We’re taking applications for the semester beginning in January, and we can only take a limited number of people.

This episode is also brought to you in part by Maximizer CRM, personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. To get a demonstration of maximizer, go to the sales evangelists.com/maximizer.

Click on the link to get a free demo of what Maximizer CRM can do for you. It integrates your marketing campaign as well as your CRM, and it works whether you’re a small organization or a large one.

I hope you enjoyed the show today as much as I did. If so, please consider leaving us a rating on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode, and share with your friends!

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Pam Didner, Sales and Marketing, Donald Kelly,

TSE 973: Achieve Sales Growth Through Collaborative Sales And Marketing

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we talk to content marketing leader Pam Didner about the critical role content plays in sales and the importance of collaborative sales and marketing.

Content plays a critical role in educating customers and prospects, making sales enablement a natural extension of content marketing.

Pam is the author of Effective Sales Enablement: Achieve Sales Growth Through Collaborative Sales and Marketing

Automated marketing and sales enablement

Email is often our most common form of automated marketing.

Over time, with the integration of social media, social selling emerged, and it has allowed sellers to add other features to their automated marketing platforms.

Every organization automates its marketing differently, so your automation efforts will look different than those of other people around you.

Most people consider sales enablement to be related to sales training and development. If we expand it, though, we’ll recognize that there are things marketers are doing to enable sales.

Sales and marketing aren’t the same, but they complement each other.

Sales and marketing

Consider sales an additional marketing channel for your organization. With that in mind, consider the things you can do using existing marketing elements to better support your sales team.

Consider the example of a whiskey company who wanted to increase its shelf space in a specific city, so it offered to run specific paid ads on social media to drive foot traffic to the stores.

Who doesn’t appreciate more foot traffic?

This kind of effort requires sales and marketing to work together and think through some of the elements that marketing can use to support sales.

Sales and marketing people tend to lose sight of the fact that they are doing the exact same things every day.

Struggling to collaborate

Sales and marketing have the same business goals and they should work toward them together.

Things get complicated because their department goals are different. Sales focuses on revenue while marketing focuses on brand recognition.

Sales also has more of a short-term priority than marketing, which tends to have more of a long-term mission.

Finally, the two departments tend to have different resources and support allocations available to accomplish their tasks.

Sales and marketing can never be 100 percent fully aligned, but is it possible to find commonalities? Can we drive a joint initiative together?

Joining sales and marketing

In smaller environments like emerging startups, sales and marketing tend to work closely together.

In every organization, the mandate to work together must start at the top. Without direction from the leadership, the two teams will avoid working together because it’s more difficult than working separately.

It’s similar to parenting. Two kids from the same family have different personalities and different interests, but parents can lead them to work together and facilitate their relationship despite those differences.

Enablement ingredients

The three critical keys to enablement are

  • training
  • content
  • coaching

Sales and marketing teams should try to understand those on the other side of the equation. Marketing is probably on the forefront of digital communication, and they can help sales understand how to use digital platforms well.

Have a conversation with your marketing department to learn from the things they already know.

“Collaborative Sales And Marketing” episode resources

You can connect with Pam at pamdidner.com. You can also grab a copy of her book, Global Content Marketing: How to Create Great Content, Reach More Customers, and Build a Worldwide Marketing Strategy that Works or Effective Sales Enablement: Achieve Sales Growth Through Collaborative Sales and Marketing

Her challenge is this: if you read her books and don’t find anything of value in them, schedule a call with her to let her know. She’d love to hear about your challenges and help you find solutions.

This episode is brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach and it allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

TSE Hustler’s League

We’ll use prospect.io in the upcoming semester of TSE Hustler’s League to focus on prospecting. We’ll give you insights and tools that will help you gain new customers. In addition, we’ll provide training and strategies that you can implement today to ensure constant flow in your pipeline.

Check out our new semester of The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League. We’re taking applications for the semester beginning in January, and we can only take a limited number of people.

This episode is also brought to you in part by Maximizer CRM, personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. To get a demonstration of maximizer, go to the sales evangelists.com/maximizer.

Click on the link to get a free demo of what Maximizer CRM can do for you. It integrates your marketing campaign as well as your CRM, and it works whether you’re a small organization or a large one.

Leave us a review on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content, and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

 

Michael Wills, Donald Kelly, Sales Training, How to do a salesprocess

TSE 971: How To Develop A Sales Process That Works

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we talk with global sales team leader Michael Wills about how to develop a sales process that works.

Many sellers have no real sense of direction, but they expect to be successful despite the lack of a plan.

Defining a sales process

A sales process provides a way for you to communicate with a buyer in a systematic way that is successful and repeatable. A single success doesn’t mean you have a sales process. It needs to be measurable so you can confirm results and grow.

To start, recognize that you’re doing something well, but there are no doubt areas that you can improve.

Figure out who exactly your buyer is.

Find out these things:

  • Where do they live?
  • Where do they work?
  • How do they work?
  • How can you communicate with them effectively?
  • What’s my industry?
  • What’s the norm?

Be able to understand and document that information, which will give you a path. Once you have that path, you can figure out the processes to execute.

If you have someone who has had internal success, do a Q&A with him and figure out what his best practices are and build processes around those ideas.

People who aren’t led systematically will create their own strategies, which isn’t necessarily a positive thing. The process facilitates the execution of a strategy.

Dangers of operating without a process

If your team doesn’t have a process in place, you won’t know whether the team is selling to customers that you don’t necessarily want to do business with. You won’t know if the team is selling in a way that is unprofessional or inappropriate. Finally, you won’t know how consistent each person is in the process.

It’s important that you don’t let people operate on their own because you can’t grow around that system.

The sales process must be built around the way the buyers buy. When you truly know who you’re going after, you can understand their way of purchasing.

It’s also really important to understand where your buyer fits within the decision-making process because you’ll have different processes for different levels of people.

The method of communication and the information you share differs based on authority and timeline.

Fundamental parts of a process

Begin by understanding that your buyer knows 50 to 60 percent of what she needs to know because she ever talks to you for the first time. Knowing that frames the picture for you to jump in and be further down the sales process than you would have been without that knowledge.

Begin by talking about the client’s industry and situation. Use her language and previous client experience to bring value. You can share information, share best practices and share things you understand about the challenges her organization will face.

By doing that, you become a trusted person.

Today’s buyer needs value early. By sharing that value, you become trusted, and that person will share your information through the organization.

You can share solutions and then concrete details about how other clients have solved these problems.

Building a pipeline

Build a pipeline of prospects that are interesting to you.

Choose an industry you have a little bit of insight into and that you’re comfortable with. It’s important to understand the language of the industry.

Use the Internet to learn about the industry and the company itself. Determine hot topics and find out the things they are posting.

Instead of referring to it as cold calling, we should call it smart calling because we’ve done the research and you know who you want to talk to and why you want to talk to them.

It’s a lower conversion rate but it’s a great way to build your pipeline and gain some real opportunities.

Customization

Find the right level of customization for your prospecting.

Using a first name in an email is critical, but so is the information you find through your Internet searches, posts, product launches, and any other information that demonstrates that you’ve done some work.

Value

You can’t discuss value until you understand the industry you’re working in.

Use the experience you’ve gained by working with an earlier client to quantify benefits for your potential clients. Through your discovery process, talk to the prospect about the current situation and how your product or service could help them operate more efficiently or have capabilities they didn’t have before.

It’s “back of the napkin” stuff that doesn’t require an Excel spreadsheet, but it’s specific information that will be relevant to your prospect.

When a prospect agrees to meet with you, they already know a decent amount about your product. If you initiate the conversation talking about value, and you can quantify that value, it’s a different conversation.

Being consistent doesn’t mean you never tweak your process, but consistency is the only way to track whether your process is working or not.

It’s critical for salespeople to know what they do well and to understand why they do the things they do.

“A Sales Process That Works” episode resources

This episode is brought to you in part by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. It will help you with your outbound to expand your outreach and it allows you to set it and forget it. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.

We’ll use prospect.io in the upcoming semester of TSE Hustler’s League to focus on prospecting. We’ll give you insights and tools that will help you gain new customers. In addition, we’ll provide training and strategies that you can implement today to ensure constant flow in your pipeline.

Check out our new semester of The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League. We’re taking applications for the semester beginning in January, and we can only take a limited number of people.

This episode is also brought to you in part by Maximizer CRM, personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. To get a demonstration of maximizer, go to the sales evangelists.com/maximizer.

Click on the link to get a free demo of what Maximizer CRM can do for you. It integrates your marketing campaign as well as your CRM, and it works whether you’re a small organization or a large one.

Leave us a review on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Stitcher, or wherever you consume this content, and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility.

If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, Leading, Little Things

TSE 907: The Little Things Matter The Most When You’re Leading


Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, Leading, Little ThingsHow far are you willing to go to get ahead of the competition? In order to be successful, you must do the opposite of what everyone else is doing. Realize that little things matter the most when you’re leading, and if you adopt them in your own business, you can become a better sales leader.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, I’ll share the true story of a dentist I visited who went the extra mile, and why it made such a big difference.

This dentist didn’t do anything big. Take note of the five little things that will cause your sales staff to look to you as a sales leader.

1. Recognize them out of the blue.

There are natural occasions like birthday, anniversaries, kids going to college or graduating, or 5th anniversary working with the company. A lot of sales leaders aren’t acknowledging these natural opportunities to recognize an employee.

Call them to see how they are doing; maybe on a Wednesday just to see how the day went and how the deals are going. Encourage them along the way, even if things didn’t go the way they wanted.

Your team will learn to trust that you’re looking out for their best interest, and they’ll trust and support you. And when you need help, they’re going to work harder for you.

2. Take time for one-on-one coaching.

Make sure you spend time with your sellers so you’ll understand their strengths and their struggles. Prioritize one-on-one coaching.

Stephen Covey’s fifth principle says to seek first to understand, and then to be understood. Before you focus on helping them understand the things you need them to get done, seek to understand the things they need.

Treat them like your customer. Make them feel good.

3. Recognize their successes in front of their peers.

When a sales rep closes a deal or lines up an appointment or gets a referral, recognize them in front of their peers.

Sales reps love recognition, and if you can make them feel good, they’re going to work harder to repeat that action. You’ll communicate to them that you care about the sales reps and they’ll want to work hard over and over again.

4. Make their goal become your priority.

It’s tempting to think of this the other way around and expect your sales team to make your goals their goals.

Begin the other way around. If your sales rep wants to buy a house, or get a new car, or take his family to Europe, or pay off college loans, make that goal a priority.

If you, as a sales leader, are focused on making me win as a seller, I am going to do everything you need me to do. I’ll understand that you had my best interests in mind.

If, for example, they are planning a trip, and you engage with them to find out details about the trip, and where they are in the buying process, and what the costs of the trip will be, it will communicate that you care about their needs rather than pushing your own.

5. Challenge them, trust them, and empower them to do tough things.

Let your team members know that you’re confident that they can handle the tasks you’ve given them.

Remind them that you’ll help them through the process.

Don’t simply give responsibility to the best sales reps on the team; trust and empower your sales reps with important tasks. Don’t give them too much too soon, and don’t give them work that is difficult for them to bear.

Remind them that you have confidence in them.

As your team members achieve success, gradually increase the tasks you entrust to them.

Give your sales team reasons to brag about you; to realize that they have the best sales leader in the world.

I share stuff like this because I want to help you guys find more ideal customers, to build stronger value, to close more deals, and most importantly to challenge you to do big things.

“Little Things Matter the Most” episode resources

Today’s episode is brought to you by Maximizer CRM, a personalized CRM that gives you the confidence to improve your business and increase profits. Get rid of the boring CRMs and customize to your team’s selling abilities.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, which teaches you how to utilize video to stand out from your competition. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. You are a brand, and video can help you set yourself apart.

Leave us a review wherever you consume this content, and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. It helps others find our message and improves our visibility. If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Jason Loh, Sales Manger, Get Time Back, Anaplan,

TSE 903: How To Get More Time Back As A Sales Manager To Exceed Quota

Jason Loh, Sales Manger, Get Time Back, Anaplan,Regardless of your industry, you’re probably invested in helping your sales team optimize its performance. Ultimately, we need our teams to hit their quotas and perform at their peak. So how do you help your team get more time back in order to exceed quota?

Jason Loh visits The Sales Evangelist podcast today to help us understand how to make the best use of our time and to help us understand the value of time. When we do, we can help our sales teams get more time back to exceed quota.

Jason is the global head of sales solutions for Anaplan, a software vendor that is pioneering a category of connected planning. Anaplan seeks to bring together people with data in order to help organizations better manage their business.

What is the value of time?

Sellers do best when they have clear marching orders.

Sometimes the problem emerges at the end of Q4 when an organization is moving into a new fiscal year.  Sellers don’t always know whether they are supposed to sell into the same accounts they sold into the last year.

While the company cleans house at the end of a fiscal year, very often the sellers find themselves with a nebulous period of time. They could spend as many as two or three months waiting to see what comes next.

If sellers don’t have a clear sense of what they should be doing, uncertainty causes them to hesitate. By the time the organization gains its footing for the new fiscal year, the company has lost two months’ worth of time, which means it has to complete 12 months’ worth of selling in only 10 months.

One of the first thing sales reps want to know when they begin a new job is how they’ll be compensated. If their compensation will rely on productivity, it’s in their best interest to make the most of their time.

How can teams get more time back?

Sales leaders can’t simply expect sellers to figure things out. Instead, they have to set a good example and get the house in order to remove roadblocks to success and empower their sellers.

Identify the top three things for the upcoming fiscal year.

You must make sure that your organization’s plan correlates to how you’re designing your compensation plans. Without an extra incentive to drive your reps to accomplish those goals, how will you expect them to accomplish those three things? Furthermore, why are you incentivizing things that don’t match your company’s top three goals?

So often there’s a disconnect between senior leadership and the sellers, so people are scratching their heads wondering why things aren’t matching up.

How does a lack of goal setting affect organizations?

The Alexander Group reports that 81 percent of organizations don’t have their comp plans connected to their sales team’s marching orders.

Jason says there are things organizations can control, and things they can’t control. Your organization should do its best to control things like marching orders and sales plans because those things are well within your control.

Things like employee turnover are completely outside your organization’s control and they can present a significant challenge.

How do you effectively plan for the hiring process of bringing on a new rep, ramping for a period of time, covering for employees who are absent for a period of time, all while still managing the entire process?

What platforms and technologies should my sales team be using?

From a seller or sales rep’s perspective, CRM is the core.

For leaders, consider this: does micromanaging your sales teams’ number of emails, number of voicemails and other metrics help you build your larger strategy? Does it get you where you need to be in 12 months?

Aim to help your sellers manage their sales basics so you can transfer a marketing qualified lead to a sales qualified lead.

Opt for a decision-based platform that helps you pull together data. Make sure you know who your contacts are at each organization as well as who your influencers and decision-makers are.

Identify the tools that will help your sales team elevate its game and develop more opportunities.

Measure your reps on whether they delivered.

Productivity depends on the industry you’re in and the tasks and activities you’re required to do. Understanding those requirements will help you understand whether your team is maximizing its productivity.

Imagine this:

If I’m a sales rep with a killer sales forecast and I miss my number, I might be escorted out the door. If I’m a sales rep with a horrible sales forecast, but I exceed my number anyway, I’ll be carried around the office like a rock star.

As a sales leader, it’s challenging to marry the endgame with the leading indicators like phone calls and emails, but it’s worth the effort. Otherwise, your team will focus primarily on the end number without paying as much attention to the process.

If you don’t incentivize the process, your sellers won’t pay attention to it.

There are a lot of movable parts in this process.

It’s all interconnected so the decisions in one part directly impact the other parts.

Introduce a decision platform so you can understand how even small decisions will cascade against the organization. Don’t look at things in a vacuum.

Look at things holistically and see all the components of your sales strategy to make sure you’re able to attain those goals.

“Get More Time Back” episode resources

Find out more about Anaplan or contact Jason Loh directly at the website.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, which teaches you how to utilize video to stand out from your competition. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. You are a brand, and video can help you set yourself apart.

Leave us a review wherever you consume this content and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

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Joe Pardo, The Sales Evangelist, Empower, Podcast

TSE 896: Empower Yourself First Before You Can Empower Others

Joe Pardo, The Sales Evangelist, Empower, Podcast

In order for your organization to operate at its best, the people within must be empowered. The team must feel confident working together and it must believe in the process. But believing in the process begins with the leadership, which is why you must empower yourself before you can empower others.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, Joe Pardo, who is an accomplished business coach, consultant, speaker, podcaster, author and DJ, shares his experience working in his family business, and his thoughts on learning to empower yourself first before you can empower others.

His newest book, Sales Won’t Save Your Business: Focus on the T.O.P., addresses the importance of developing confidence in your team, your customer, and yourself on the way to increasing profit.

Consistency

Joe believes that processes are the cornerstone of every business. They affect how your team operates, how you structure offers, and how your customers see you.

It’s the concept behind his new book, because you may land a deal, but if your customer has a bad experience, he won’t be back. He’ll tell others how horrible the experience was and your business won’t be in a good place.

Organizations that find themselves with frequent turnover, which results in constantly training new people, should immediately look to their processes.

Consistency makes a difference for your client base. You need a system that makes people want to come into work.

Leadership

Sometimes negativity seeps into an organization. Even if it doesn’t exist within the leadership, negativity within a team can become visible to your customers.

Before you can help your team, you have to figure out what makes you tick. You have to be able to remind yourself of the “magic” that keeps you doing what you do.

During a period when Joe was working for his family business, his team was resistant to an upcoming structure change. He wasn’t really “in charge” of anyone, so he wasn’t empowered to fire anyone.

He immediately understood the danger of publicly second-guessing those in leadership above you, because it forces the team to choose sides. As a result, he understood the importance of hiring the right people to start with, so that no one second-guesses each other.

Mission

Leaders who understand people’s “why” will be better equipped to create a place people want to be. If you communicate to your people that you care about them and about their goals, they will buy into the mission and they will grow.

They will want to help your company and they’ll be open to your guidance.

What do your team members have on their walls? What kind of books are on their bookshelves? If you’re willing to take time to learn a little bit about the things they are interested in, it will carry you so far with your team members.

Your goal is to create as many touch points as possible so you can relate things back to them.

If one of your team members has interest in writing a book, put him in contact with a friend who has walked through the process before.

Give away baseball tickets that your vendor gave you to a team member who loves baseball.

Processes

If you’re in a leadership position, or you want to be, get used to creating processes for yourself and your team. Processes don’t have to eliminate spontaneity; they simply ensure that certain things happen within a certain time period.

You might, for example, ensure that new employees spend time with veterans of the company. It allows them to see the opportunity available within the organization.

Consider simple ideas like creating a budget that allows you to buy a breakfast sandwich for your team members as a way to build community with them.

Make a point to get to know people personally. Your team members will feel a loyalty if you tap into their personal lives.

Processes can be passed on to the next person when you move on to something else.

“Empower Others” episode resources

You can connect with Super Joe Pardo at his website, where you can also find a copy of his book, Sales Won’t Save Your Business: Focus on the T.O.P.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, which teaches you how to utilize video to stand out from your competition. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. You are a brand, and video can help you set yourself apart.

Our friends at Wiley have provided a free excerpt of the book Stop Selling & Start Leading. Based on research and interviews with buyers, the book provides a blueprint for sales professionals. Read an excerpt of the book here. Grab your copy of the SlideShare.

Leave us a review wherever you consume this content, and share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. If you haven’t already done so, subscribe so you won’t miss a single episode.

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Piyush Patel, On-boarding, New Sales Team, New Employee Training

TSE 893: How to Make New Employees Feel Like They Already Belong


Piyush Patel, On-boarding, New Sales Team, New Employee Training

When your company on-board a new employee, you invest time, effort, and resources into the process. So if you’re going to spend the money, doesn’t it make sense to put energy into making sure the employee is successful? The key is to help new employees feel like they already belong.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, Piyush Patel, author of Lead Your Tribe, Love Your Work shares how he on-boards his new employees and how he engages his staff in the hiring process.

He emphasizes the need to show new team members where the finish line is before expecting them to sprint toward it.

Initial welcome steps

Before employees set foot in Piyush’s office, they receive a box in the mail that includes initial paperwork plus t-shirts and other swag related to the company. The company also sends a book about the team and how the company operates.

The most important item in the box is an empty picture frame with a note encouraging the employee to bring a picture of a loved one for the new desk.

Psychologically, he said, the first day presents the highest stress for a new hire.

There’s the potential for a lot of doubt, and lots of room to wonder whether he made the right decision.

If the new desk has a picture of a loved one on it, there’s a better chance he’ll be convinced he made the right decision.

Making time to welcome employees

Piyush, the CEO of his company, dedicates himself to spending a half day with new employees on their first day in the building.

He gives new employees a tour, explains the inner workings of the company, and then gives them a spreadsheet with every employee’s name on it. Their assignment is to go from desk to desk asking a series of three questions.

  • Why do you come to work here?
  • What’s your favorite food?
  • What’s your favorite memory of your time here?

By the end of the exercise, the new employee has heard every co-worker explain all the best parts of the company, as well as a sort of history of the company in the form of memories.

The net result is an employee who is excited to be part of the story.

“Dating” for 30 days

Piyush treats every new hire like a 30-day date for both employer and employee. The two come together at the end of the 30 days to decide whether the pairing is a good fit.

He identifies employees he calls navigators whose job it is to “protect the culture.”  Piyush tasks them with taking the new employee to lunch, taking him to happy hour, and walking him through a segment of training.

At the end of 30 days, the group decides whether the new hire is a good fit for the team.

Even if the new hire isn’t immediately a good fit, he’ll evaluate whether the new hire can be rehabilitated.

It creates the sense that the whole team is in this together, and it results in a culture where people love their work.

The result is a community with low turnover and great results.

Ongoing coaching

Some employers say they don’t have time to invest in new employees this way.

To them, Piyush says that he realized he was investing much more time dealing with unfulfilled expectations. He would have saved time by making the initial investment early on.

Instead of constantly rebuilding the process, he could carry out regular maintenance along the way with much better results.

He avoids making employees feel like they are constantly being criticized. Piyush constantly affirms employees: they hear the things they are doing well as well as things they could improve.

He said that people work for three reasons beyond money: belonging, affirmation, and meaning. Once they are in the tribe, you have to work to constantly maintain those.

“Make New Employees Feel Like They Already Belong” resources

Grab a copy of Piyush’s new book, Lead Your Tribe, Love Your Work or connect with him on LinkedIn.

We’ve been recommending the book the book, Stop Selling & Start Leading: How to Make Extraordinary Sales Happen from our sponsors at Wiley  for quite some time because we believe in the message. Based upon interviews with buyers, it offers specific information for sellers to help them become trusted advisors.

As part of the series this week, we have a SlideShare available for you to download, or you can link to it here. As always, we also have a free excerpt of the book so you can try it out for yourself. We believe you’ll like it so much you’ll want to grab your own copy.

Today’s episode was also brought to you by Video Jungle podcast, your source for marketing and making your brand pop using video. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy.

If you think you might benefit from more stories like these, check out The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League, an online group coaching program that brings sellers of all levels and all industries together to share insights. We’re beginning a new semester this fall, and we’d love for you to join us.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Sales Coaching, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales Podcast

TSE 892: How Can I Better Coach My Sales Team?

Sales Coaching, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales Podcast

When your sales team isn’t hitting its numbers, what can you do to help them improve? How can you make sure your training process is effective? Ask yourself this: How can I better coach my sales team?

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we’ll discuss sales coaching, and how you can help your sales team succeed. We’ll address the things you can do to better coach your sales team.

If you have team members who are falling short, odds are that they want to succeed just as much as you want them to succeed.

There are three things you can pay attention to in an attempt to help your team.

Coach your reps

If you aren’t able to coach your sales reps yourself, then find a coach who can.

Begin by understanding the difference between training and coaching. Coaching helps the seller recognize his challenges.

Ask him appropriate questions and help him arrive at his own decisions about his selling. Allow him to participate in the process.

Tailor the approach to his particular challenges without lecturing him.

Work together to solve problems, and identify the things that aren’t working. Where does he think he can improve? What does he feel like he needs?

Training, on the other hand, is an on-going process. We cannot expect that one sales training session will help our reps instantly be effective.

That simply isn’t the case in any industry.

Training must be hands-on, and it must include application. Make it consistent; something that changes behavior.

Guide them through the process, and seek training that is continual.

Makes sales meetings educational

Sales meetings shouldn’t be focused on administrative tasks. It’s ok to talk about the effectiveness of sales, but this meeting shouldn’t be about measuring our individual effectiveness.

Sales meetings should address how the team is doing as a whole. Don’t single out individuals.

Some of your team members will obviously be doing better than others, and it’s ok to ask them to share what’s working.

Don’t single people out, because allowing the successful team members to talk excessively about their success will likely demoralize those who are struggling.

Instead of focusing on individuals during your sales meeting, focus on your team.

Best of all, ask your team members to share the tasks they are best at so that everyone on the team benefits from their experience.

Be involved in the process

Give your team members the opportunity to take ownership of the process. At the same time, though, be there with them.

  • Take her on a one-on-one call.
  • Go on an appointment with her.
  • Make calls with her.
  • Help her send emails.

When your team succeeds, celebrate with them. Your job is to motivate them and better coach your sales team.

“Better Coach My Sales Team” episode resources

We’ve been recommending the book the book, Stop Selling & Start Leading: How to Make Extraordinary Sales Happen from our sponsors at Wiley  for quite some time because we believe in the message. Based upon interviews with buyers, it offers specific information for sellers to help them become trusted advisors.

As part of the series this week, we have a SlideShare available for you to download, or you can link to it here. As always, we also have a free excerpt of the book so you can try it out for yourself. We believe you’ll like it so much you’ll want to grab your own copy.

Today’s episode was also brought to you by Video Jungle podcast, your source for marketing and making your brand pop using video. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy.

If you think you might benefit from more stories like these, check out The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League, an online group coaching program that brings sellers of all levels and all industries together to share insights. We’re beginning a new semester this fall, and we’d be honored for you to join us.

We’d love for you to give us a rating wherever you consume this content. If you love the podcast, give us a 5-star review and tell others about the podcast.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

Dan Cook, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast

TSE 869: Sales From The Street:”Scaling My Sales Team”

Dan Cook, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast

When it’s time to scale your team, there are dozens of things that can go wrong. How do you make sure you hire the right team members? What if they don’t work out? How can I make sure the people I bring are really good.

On today’s episode of Sales From The Street, we’ll discuss how to scale your team and make sure you can function and perform effectively. Dan Cook of Lucid Software shares how he created a sales team where there wasn’t one previously, and how he overcame the challenges that emerged.

Lucid Software grew from 35 employees in 2014 to almost 400 employees today. At the start of his endeavor, Dan was the only sales rep, and now the team includes almost 100 reps.

Figure out the sales process.

Before Dan could begin to grow the sales program, he had to figure out what it would look like first. He played the role of sales rep, figured out how to build a pipeline, discovered how to close deals, and documented every step of the process.

He got the green light to grow the team, and then he began the process of determining whether his success was repeatable. Could the four reps he hired repeat the same kind of success he had as a sales rep.

When things weren’t working, Dan was left wondering if the problem was the people he had hired or the system he had put in place. He had to figure out how to help them perform better.

Then, as the sales team grew to include more reps and more managers, the challenges of scaling grew in importance and sophistication.

Troubleshoot your system.

In the early stages, Dan’s priority was troubleshooting: finding places in the process that didn’t work and determine what the problem was.

Along the way, he discovered that every person is different. Each has a different level of experience and each “grew up” in a different setting.

As a result, each has a comparative advantage in certain areas.

Dan discovered his advantage was in the process and strategy side of building a sales program. He discovered that he did not have an advantage in software sales and tactically managing the different components of the sales process. So in things like prospecting, pipeline creation, negotiation, and closing, he wasn’t the strongest guy.

He quickly learned the need for self-awareness, and the ability to identify people whose strengths can complement or supplement your own. He recruited people who had experience managing sales teams who could supplement the places he wasn’t strong.

Establish the right culture.

You must recognize that you don’t have all the answers, and that your ego can get in the way of helping the team.

Dan stresses the importance of creating a culture that allows people to ask questions. He seeks a balance between inspiring confidence in his leadership while still acknowledging that he doesn’t know everything.

Dan allows his employees to ask dumb questions, and he has worked to get rid of the competitiveness that prevents people from asking questions. He strives to help his managers be humble instead of defensive.

If you set the right sales culture and build the right sales team, your results will follow.

Be reflective and ask good questions about what you’re good at and where you know you need help when you scale your team. Be willing to hire people who complement you. When you do, you’ll create a culture that leads to positive outcomes.

“Scale Your Team” episode resources

You can connect with Dan on Linked In, or email him at Dan@lucidchart.com.

Lucid Chart is a diagramming application that launched in June. Lucid Chart allows users to build account maps to better understand who they’re selling to. It streamlines collaboration between teams within a company.

On this 4th of July, declare your independence from mediocre selling. The buyer-based ideology presented in Stop Selling & Start Leading: How to Make Extraordinary Sales Happen from our sponsors at Wiley will help your prospects see you as a leader. When they do, people will purchase from you instead of your competition.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, your source for marketing and selling your brand using video. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. Video Jungle offers top-notch, state-of-the-art advice about video, which is a great way to offer relevant content on LinkedIn.

Leave us a review wherever you consume this content. Share it with someone else who might benefit from our message. If you haven’t already done so, subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss a single episode.

Audio provided by Free SFX and Bensound.

 

 

 

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Matt Doyon, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast

TSE 859: Sales From The Street-“Hiring is Like Sales”


Matt Doyon, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast

Too many organizations continually miss the target when they hire new team members. To be an effective sales leader, you must be intentional about growing your team: fill up your pipeline with great reps just like you would with great clients. In that way, hiring is like sales.

On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, Matt Doyon of Rock Content reminds us we should hire a sales team the same way we generate good customers because hiring is like sales.

As the VP of content marketing company Rock Content, Matt views the world around him in the context of sales. He warned that companies that don’t emphasize talent acquisition will always operate from a place of desperation.

Be proactive.

When your team is short a sales rep or you don’t have enough team members, you won’t have enough opportunities in your pipeline to hit your numbers as a rep.

When you’re desperate for team members and scrambling to find someone, you may inadvertently poison the sales team by hiring the wrong person. You may end up filling the seat without adding a quality team member.

Matt confronted this problem frequently in the early days of his sales career. He needed a way to combat the problem.

Fill your funnel.

Sales professionals don’t just want a lot of customers; they want a lot of good customers.

Matt discovered the need to keep his funnel rich with great talent using four main channels.

1. Referrals

Many companies have referral programs that pay great employees for referring other great employees that can make it through the hiring process. If you aren’t actively pushing the program, it will likely just sit there.

Instead, remind your employees of your desire for other great employees. Never miss an opportunity to push the referral program.

2. Inbound

Since Matt works at a content marketing company, he used the tools at his disposal to attract new talent. He blogged, promoted the company, celebrated accomplishments, and used Instagram to share things.

Everything led to links to apply for employment.

3. Outbound

Matt uses Sales Navigator on LinkedIn to find team members the same way he uses it to find new customers. He looks for people who match the profiles of current successful team members.

The secret, he says, is that really successful people will have to be lured away from their current jobs because if they’re good, they’ll likely already be working.

4. Interns

Interns offer companies a paid trial: they are low risk and pretty hungry, and companies can gamble with them. They aren’t really working with the clients, but you have an opportunity to see how they actually work.

Skim the best.

Competitive colleges like Harvard and MIT don’t deal in student acquisition; they deal in acceptance rates.

When you build your sales team, your acceptance rate should be small: a sign that you’re only accepting the best of the candidates who apply.

Matt’s company now hires one out of every five candidates who apply. Being able to be picky elevates the level of talent you can attract.

When you make hiring mistakes, and you will because the interview process is flawed, understand that it’s probably a case of fit. Different organizations seek different things and different people. You’re seeking a good fit.

Even as a great sales leader, you can only do so much to change human behavior. You must start with great raw material.

“Hiring is Like Sales” episode resources

You can connect with Matt on LinkedIn, or on Rock Content’s website. You can also email him, though he said he’s slow to respond to email.

Check out his blog at mattsdoyon.com.

Salespeople can be leaders instead of being subservient. Our friends at Wiley have provided a free excerpt of the book Stop Selling & Start Leading which provides a blueprint to help sales professionals lead in the way that customers prefer. Read an excerpt of the book here.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, your source for marketing and selling your brand using video. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy.

The podcast is part of our newly-launched Sales Podcast Network, designed to provide specialized sales content for sellers of all levels and all industries. To learn more, email us at SPN for more information.

Tell others you know about our podcast, and subscribe if you haven’t already. Leave us a review wherever you consume this content so it will be easier for others to find us as well.

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Ericka Eller, Stress, Salesperson, Health

TSE 814: Sales From The Street-“Stress Can Affect Sales”

Ericka Eller, Stress, Salesperson, HealthSales professionals engage in a constant hustle and grind to achieve their numbers and meet their goals. What they may not understand is that the prolonged stress can affect sales.

On today’s episode of Sales From The Street, Ericka Eller emphasizes the need for sales professionals to use their time intentionally and the practical ways they can do it.

Eller works as a business development strategist and a certified wellness coach, and she works with high-achieving people who want to boost their success by managing their health.

Personal struggle

It was her own struggle with stress that led her to understand the importance of focusing on health.

She realized that it’s difficult to burn the candle at both ends and still perform at the level you’re trying to maintain. As the leader of a sales team, a coach, a mom, a wife, and an active church member, she found herself constantly thinking of work and responsibilities.

The pressure caused internal and external stress which led to lethargy and a heaviness she couldn’t escape.

Her family suffered the most because there aren’t expectations and deadlines there. Families demand no deliverables.

She became irritable and found herself missing family events. Her family didn’t recognize her, and she didn’t recognize herself.

Combatting stress

She realized she had to step back from the pressure to allow her body to recuperate.

The answer to her problem was scheduling and planning.

She plans her food prep so she can create healthy meals for her family, and she schedules her workouts. She bought a package at a local studio and writes her workouts into her calendar.

Finally, she enlisted help from health professionals to make sure her body was functioning as it should.

Where to start

Create a plan to deal with your stress. Vague plans won’t work because they don’t help you control your activities.

Instead, develop a specific plan. What does your day look like? What things must you prioritize?

Planning your day allows you to avoid the feeling of overwhelm and to find the energy to accomplish your goals. When you know that stress can affect sales, you can control your stress to increase your productivity.

Clarity returns. Ideas return. Energy returns.

Episode resources

Ericka recently blogged for us at The Sales Evangelist about the steps you can take to prevent stress from crippling you.

You may not realize you have some of the symptoms or their effect in your work and home life.

If you want to connect with her, find her at erickaeller.com, where she has a special opt-in available.

For those sellers who aren’t sure how to balance your sales schedule, The Sales Evangelizers group on Facebook is a great place to interact with sales professionals from many regions and many industries.

Our group online coaching program, The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League, also provides an opportunity to interact with other sellers, and also provides weekly coaching sessions for sellers of all levels.

Our next group begins April 26, and we’d be honored to have you join us.

Audio provided by Free SFX.

Repeatable sales process, Big Sales Wins, Chris Rothstein, Groove

TSE 808: How To Gain Big Sales Wins Through Specific Repeatable Actions

Chris Rothstein, The Sales EvangelistBig sales wins are virtually impossible when marketing and sales departments don’t work together. When the two entities align to use repeatable action steps, the result is big sales wins.

Today on The Sales Evangelist podcast, we talk with Chris Rothstein about the ways to align your sales efforts, and the success that results when you do.

Two developments demand the need for greater alignment: improved tracking capability and increased specialization within companies. Because companies used specialized departments to accomplish specific tasks, many handoffs occur throughout the sales process.

Speak the same language.

When different teams operate according to different criteria, the result is often finger-pointing rather than collaboration.

If, for example, a marketing department gathers 1,000 business cards in a fishbowl, those may not actually be qualified leads. The marketing department may perceive that it achieved its goal, while the sales team may believe otherwise.

When everyone within a company speaks the same language, the company becomes more effective.

To achieve that goal, Rothstein’s company Groove tracks all forms of communication and collects data from it. The company syncs all emails and calendars, and classifies every meeting that takes place.

Armed with that information, they can determine where in the sales process deals are dying and where the sales reps need help. They record sales calls and provide follow-on, specialized coaching.

Finally, they collaborate to identify the companies they’ll pursue in their sales process so that they are all focused on the same targets.

Narrow your focus.

Many organizations cast too wide a net.

They undertake a huge list of prospects with a goal to connect with a small number of them. Because the list is so large, it’s tough for sales people to achieve any depth in the relationship.

If, on the other hand, companies will restrict the number of prospects they target, they’ll achieve better results because they can focus better.

In an account-based approach, each person has a unique role, and the customer will experience a unified process.

Earn big sales wins.

The sales cadence model will vary according to your industry. In every industry, though, a successful cadence will require multiple touches.

Email boasts a big impact in the software industry, for example, but not in the restaurant industry. Each industry in your company’s profile will demand unique touches and processes.

Evaluate how long your process should be, and make it longer than you think it should be. Then stick with it.

Episode resources

You’ve heard me talk about The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League, our online group coaching program for sellers of all levels. We understand the importance of cadence and repeatable action steps. We help participants understand the concepts and then apply what they’ve learned.

The easiest step you can take is to apply for The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League to see if you qualify for the program. Our next semester begins April 26 and will focus on building more value. We’d be honored to have you join us.

You can connect with Chris at Groove or find him on Twitter.

Audio provided by Free SFX.

The Sales Evangelist, Company Culture, Sales, South Florida Business Journal

TSE 797: Sales or Company Culture-Which is More Important?

It’s Sunday evening, and you’re dreading work tomorrow. You give your time, but not your heart, because you don’t feel like you’re getting the help you need to increase sales. Company culture may be to blame.

Today we’re talking about company culture: why it’s important to create a great company culture and how you do it.

An editor’s note in the South Florida Business Journal pointed out that company culture is the key to growth within any organization. But is company culture more important than sales?

The truth is that you must have a focus on both sales and company culture. If you don’t focus on your employees and your customers, your company will stagnate.

Company culture of empathy

I worked in an organization once that didn’t value my input.

Somewhere along the way, the company lost sight of caring for its employees. Ego took over and it cannibalized the company.

The employees retreated into their own silos and focused solely on themselves. Eventually, the company unexpectedly let go of employees because they were more focused on dollars than on people.

When you have a company culture of empathy, you might still have to cut employees, but you’ll have a plan for it. In turn, your concern for your employees will prompt them to bend over backward for you and the company.

Shared company mission

Once your employees feel like part of your culture, they will care about the shared mission. They will come together for the common good of the mission.

Now you have an amazing product or service and a team that is united behind it. You’re infusing everyone with the drive to become sales professionals.

Here at The Sales Evangelist, our entire team focuses on helping new and struggling sellers close more deals.

All our content centers on that idea. Our whole team centers on that vision.

When you help your employees, your employees will remember it, and they’ll help you.

Ask yourself what you can do to help your employees. Seek first to understand them, and then they’ll seek to understand you and your mission.

Tell friends and colleagues about this podcast, so that if they don’t have the support of their leadership, they can get help here.

Check out The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League, an online group coaching program that targets sellers of all levels to help them connect with other people and improve their effectiveness.

Subscribe wherever you’re listening and help us evangelize the mission of effective selling.

We want you to be successful; to find more leads; to build more value; to close more deals; to do big things.

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast

TSE 794: Sales From The Street-“Don’t Be So Jealous, Bro”

Sales professionals don’t like to admit it, but we’ve all felt jealous. When one member of the team is killing it while we struggle to close, resentment creeps in; the kind of resentment that sabotages the team.

We have a tendency to compare ourselves against other people, and our managers do it to us as well. In this episode of The Sales Evangelist, we discuss the fact that,  though competition isn’t necessarily bad, ego and pride can prevent us from improving.

Ask for help.

My deals stalled. I built no value. While my coworker sailed through the discovery process, I watched my own deals stagnate.

She had experience in the kind of deals I was working on, and I eventually had to acknowledge that I needed her. It wasn’t easy, either, because I assumed as a man, I’d be a better seller than her.

Once I moved beyond those false notions and the jealous feelings, I noticed I was picking up important tidbits from her. She showed me how to guide the process and frame solutions for my clients. I noticed a difference in my sales.

I realized, too, that I was teaching her some things along the way as well.

Allow competition to drive you.

Competition among members of a sales team motivates us to do better.

Some of us won’t realize that because we’ll assume we can’t learn anything from younger team members. We’ll avoid asking for help from people we perceive aren’t as good or as experienced as we are.

Working alongside strong team members motivated me to work harder and achieve more. I learned to collaborate and strategize for the benefit of the whole team.

Now I’m selling more successfully than some of the more experienced people around me, but some of them won’t learn from me because of jealousy. I had to move beyond that thinking, and you should too.

Episode resources

We all need improvement. The Sales Evangelist Hustler’s League is a group coaching program that helps sales professionals of all levels to come together and share insights. Join us in April for the next semester, all about adding value.

It would be an honor to have you join us.

Annoying Co-worker, Office Worker

TSE 792: How To Deal With That Annoying Co-Worker On Your Team

Your job is hard enough without an annoying coworker distracting you from your work. In today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we discuss how to handle an annoying coworker when you’re simply trying to find new prospects, close more deals, and build more value.

Every sales team, no matter what you sell, has dealt with someone like this.

Perhaps he isn’t trustworthy. He coasts instead of working hard. He gossips and distracts others while they are trying to work.

Seek to understand.

Steven Covey, in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,  suggests that we first seek to understand other people before we seek to be understood ourselves.

So what does that look like with an annoying coworker?

Ask her to lunch or to coffee. Ask about her sales experience and what’s going on in her life. Try to understand who she is as a person.

She probably isn’t intentionally being annoying. She might not even realize she’s doing it.

Be a leader.

Establish a standard of working hard and staying focused, and that expectation will spread through your sales team.

More importantly, the annoying team member may discover that he’s in the wrong place. If everyone else is working and he doesn’t want to, he might decide to move on.

Ultimately, too, hiring managers may better understand how to choose future team members.

If you’re a sales leader, identify people on the team who aren’t thriving and figure out how you can coach them. How will you protect the team if your team members don’t improve after they’ve been given the opportunity?

Don’t be the annoying coworker.

If you aren’t thriving and you aren’t motivated to improve, look into your why.

Maybe you aren’t cut out for sales. Perhaps you’re in the wrong industry or you’re selling the wrong product.

Don’t stay stuck in the wrong place.

If you have a coworker like this, tell her about this podcast where we provide sales training to sellers of all levels. Tell her about The Sales Evangelist Hustlers League where she can learn from other sellers in an online group coaching format.

We want you to build stronger pipelines, close more deals and do big things.

Karim El Gammal, Donald Kelly, Sales Plan

TSE 766: Developing an Effective Sales Plan

Karim El Gammal, Donald Kelly, Sales PlanKarim El Gammal is a sales leader who knows how to develop an effective sales plan. He likes to help software companies develop innovative sales strategies and maximize channel-profitability.

He managed to achieve $3M in recurring revenue at Vodafone, in 18 months. Karim also grew the Cambridge Education Group sales team from 1 to 10 people, remotely from Boston, and was one of the key players in creating the Stafford House digital brand.

Currently, Karim is building a sales team in NY, at STRV – software development company.

As an entrepreneur, Karim was featured on Gimlet Media Startup-Podcast after being on the winning NY StartupBus in 2017. He is currently building Phishly to help large companies detect social engineering attacks and avoid getting phished in the future.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Karim:

The Power of Having Clear Goal and Plan

  • A team should follow a clear path. There should be clear direction and strategic planning. Otherwise, an organization can’t function properly.
  • This should be team collaboration mindset.
  • Give your sales reps full ownership so they can have a clear picture of the bigger plans.

3 Major Pitfalls Why Sales Plans Fail

1. Bad Data

IBM estimates $3.1 trillion of the yearly cost of poor quality data

When data is transferred from one department to another, it could burn thousands of dollars on running the wrong campaigns or wrong target audience.

2. Aligning the Company’s Objectives Across the Board

The company has to have a mindset as a company of having the right data and apply best practices across different departments.

Generate better inbound leads by talking to your marketing team. Then figure out a plan together. Share feedback, best practices, and align goals together to make it easier for everyone.

3. Tracking

Take time to step back and analyze the data on a monthly basis. Figure out what you’ve done wrong and what to do better next time. Then track that data to reach the higher level.

Elements of an Effective Sales Plan

1. Pick a niche market and build traction.

When you track to create something to everyone, you end up creating something for no one. Think about how big is the market, what products are sold, value proposition, and competitive advantages.

2. Target customer

Who’s your target customer and why? Consider your geographic information, target channels, budget and measuring the budget. All these info will help you create your customer profile that will qualify your leads and manage your funnel more effectively.

3. Conversion versus customer fallout.

Think about your competitive advantages or are you missing on important features? Sales reps must report every single feedback in the CRM. The seniors should verify questions and analyze data before sharing the feedback with the product and marketing teams. Transferring the right data at the right time is also crucial.

Karim’s Major Takeaway:

Understand your value within the organization or wherever you go. It’s essential to grow your career.

Episode Resources:

Connect with Karim on LinkedIn and Instagram or reach out to him thru karim@strv.com.

STRV

Check out the TSE Hustler’s League.

Get a free audiobook download and a 30-day free trial at audibletrial.com/tse with over 180,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, Android, Kindle or mp3 player.

New Seller, Luck, Donald Kelly, Best Sales Podcast

TSE 717: I DON’T Believe in Beginners Luck and Here Is The Reason Why

New Seller, Luck, Donald Kelly, Best Sales PodcastIt’s your first day of work or you’re new to sales or your business and you’re getting some opportunities. You’re calling the prospects. You’re getting your way in.

Even if you don’t know anything much about the industry or the product you’re seeing success.

Is it beginner’s luck? I believe it’s more than that.

Luck is merely the place where opportunity meets hard work.

What makes new reps so different?

They’re eager. They don’t have preconceived knowledge. Whereas seasoned sellers feel so confident they don’t push themselves too much.

I listened to this podcast called How I Built This by NPR. In the show, they interviewed a girl who had no knowledge of the industry but she was able to build a thriving organization. Or the guys of Airbnb had no prior knowledge of hospitality. A lot of people don’t know what to do in the beginning.

New Sellers versus Seasoned Sellers

What they had was not beginner’s luck, but hustle. When you’re new, you hustle and hustle because you’ve got nothing to lose.

And when you’re seasoned, you’re afraid you’re going to lose something. But how can you even lose something you’ve never had?

The beginners don’t have boundaries. They do stuff and see results. And as time goes by, the start to become afraid. They start to learn about the lingo and the processes. Someone tells them not to do it because it doesn’t work.

If you want to be a top performer, continue the hustle all throughout the process. Work late, work early. Do what you need to do.

The Power of Habit

Sometimes we get stuck in our old habits and this can keep us from opportunities. And what if you changed that? Break past that. The fears you have may not even exist. So stop falling back in your comfort zone.

Are there certain habits you need to break? What habits do you think you need to go further and beyond them?

Are you making 20 calls per day? You probably can do better than that. Don’t expect the same results from doing the same thing over and over again.

Don’t be afraid. Try new things!

Episode Resources:

Check out the TSE Hustler’s League.

Tired of PowerPoint decks? Use Prezi Business and your presentations will never be the same.

Rebecca Teasdale, Donald Kelly, Loyalists Team, Sales Team

TSE 706: How to Go From a Good Team to an Exceptional Team

Rebecca Teasdale, Donald Kelly, Loyalists Team, Sales TeamHow do you move your team from being good to great?

Rebecca Teasdale is the co-author of The Loyalist Team. Learn how you can  apply some tips and strategies from this book into your own sale process.

The other co-authors of the book are Linda Adams, Audrey Epstein, and Abby Curnow-Chavez.

Whether you’re the team leader or the manager or a member of a team or department, there are so many great gems in this episode.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Rebecca:

About The Loyalist Team:

This is based on the model for the types of teams that all teams fall into.

The books allows you to identify and recognize if you’re on a great team, a bad team, or somewhere in the middle.

This allows you to diagnose your starting point for any other business process. Once you know it, you know where to start and what actions to take.

The 4 Different Types of Team:

  1. The Saboteur Team (The Bottom End of Pack)

Characteristics:

  • There is about 15% of teams with this type of team.
  • Teams are governed by a lot of distrust.
  • People are motivated by having the best recognition or the best project or the next promotion.
  • People undermine each other. They’re afraid and are not able to do their best work.
  1. The Loyalist Team (The Top of the Pack)

Characteristics:

  • People hold each other accountable. They will call each other out when they see someone struggling or not doing their best work.
  • They’re just as committed to the success of their peers as they are to themselves.
  • When they see someone struggling or having a bad day, they’re able to step in and help the person rebuild their confidence or give the help they need.
  1. The Benign Saboteur Team (Middle of the Pack)

Characteristics:

  • Living the life of live and let live
  • No active undermining but very much set down mentality of not wanting to get involved.
  • They’re motivated to survive.
  1. The Situational Loyalist Team (Middle of the Pack)

Characteristics:

  • This is a good team, but not great.
  • They’re good on the surface, but they’re missing a couple of the key ingredients.

What You Can Do to Get to the Loyalist Team:

  • Be very intentional about being a good team but be armed with the right knowledge.
  • Have success conversations.
  • Get involved.
  • Talk about what things don’t work and be comfortable with that.
  • Have the ability to talk about these types of issues.

Some intersting statistics:

  • The loyalist team is 2000 times more likely than a saboteur team to be viewed effectively by their internal customers.
  • They are 50,000 times more likely than a saboteur team to detect conflict when it arises and do that in a productive way.
  • A loyalist team is 106 times more likely to give each other hard feedback.

Strategies for checking the team:

Know where you are at this point. Have an environment where you can sit down and have a conversation about this. Have a meaningful discussion on:

  • Your shared priorities
  • What you need from each other to be successful
  • What behavior do you want to hold each other accountable for
  • What ways are you going to support each other
  • How are you going to hold each other accountable
  • What results are you looking for as a team

Rebecca’s Major Takeaway:

Start by understanding any relationship on the team that are not loyalist relationships. Then work hard on finding common ground. Show up in a supportive way for those people. Give them the knowledge you want them to succeed. Start being willing to have difficult conversations as you’re asking them how to be better. Then go from here.

Episode Resources:

www.theloyalistteam.com

Tired of the same old, boring PowerPoint decks? Use Prezi Business and your presentations will never be the same. Tell your story the way you want to tell it.

Join the TSE Hustler’s League.

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 499: Sales From The Street-“Internal Competition”

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist What happens when you have new people in your sales team? Do you get threatened that somebody might be better than you?

In today’s episode, I’m going to share with you a personal experience – a difficulty I had as a young seller and how I overcame that.

 

Overcoming Your Fear of Competition

I’m a competitive person but whenever our company would hire new sales reps, I think about whether they’re any good or if they would outsell me. I was looking too much towards the fear of being beaten out and that hindered my performance.

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So I’m going to share with you some ways to help you overcome this fear so you can up your game:

  1. Don’t get thrown off.

Fear of competition distracts you from selling. When you focus more on other people, you tend to lose focus on yourself and it can hinder you from hitting your daily call goals. Don’t let this happen to you or you’d be thrown off your game. Being a top-performing seller starts in your head.

  1. Stick to your plan.

When you already have a path, stick to it and don’t just follow whatever the new guy is doing. Stick to what works. If you have a plan and it’s working, refine that plan and continue to work it.

  1. Help them as needed.

Learn from people in your team. Be open to learn and share information and you’ll gain so much more in return. People who came from other companies have a different way of thinking and learning. Coming from different perspectives allows you to improve and refine yourself. Give help to them and don’t just hoard information.

  1. Focus on your goals and hustle.

Focus on your goals to keep you from being distracted.

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  1. Competition helps you improve.

Bounce ideas off of each other so each one of you can improve. Help each other to become top-performing sellers.

Episode Resources:

Say goodbye to long, boring proposals and check out PandaDoc. Create electronic proposals to your prospects. Sign and receive payments without leaving your CRM. It integrates well with other CRMs such as Salesforce. Pipedrive, and HubSpot. To get a quick demonstration and a free trial, go to www.thesalesevangelist.com/panda

Donald Kelly, PandaDoc

What do you like about our podcast? Kindly leave us some rating and/or review on iTunes. This would mean so much to me.

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Salesforce, Sales dashboard

TSE BLOG 008: What Your Sales Dashboard Should Look Like!

Salesforce, Sales dashboard If someone asked you to provide some quick sales analytics, what could you tell them about how your company is doing? Do you have that quick-take data, and what does it tell you?

A sales dashboard does just that: It gives you, at a glance, details specific to your company or your sales. It keeps the focus on your goals, and thus on the future. And the best thing is that your sales dashboard doesn’t have to look like someone else’s sales dashboard—it can information specific to you.

What should your dashboard do for you, and what can it contain? Find out with this graphic.

See the full graph here: https://www.salesforce.com/hub/analytics/essential-sales-dashboard-tips/

Science of Selling, Donald Kelly, David Hoffeld, Sales Training

TSE 481: The Science of Selling by David Hoffeld

Science of Selling, Donald Kelly, David Hoffeld, Sales Training Are you still using the same selling strategy that you used some 20 years ago? You can’t just sit there and wing it anymore thinking that those old school technologies are going to win clients over.

You can no longer guess your way to success nor should you even wait for a guru to tell you what works because you need to sell based on the science of selling if you really want to be 100% effective.

Today’s guest is David Hoffeld, author of the book, The Science of Selling: Proven Strategies to Make Your Pitch Influence Decisions and Close a Deal. David is the CEO and Chief Sales Trainer of a research-based sales training firm, the Hoffeld Group. They literally read scientific journals and apply the studies into the real world of sales.

He shares with us the great things he has learned from studies and experiences about the importance of science in sales.
Here are the highlights of my conversation with David:

Why understanding science is important in sales:

When 800 salespeople were analyzed on real sales calls,

  • 63% regularly behaved in ways that drove down performance
  • 37% were consistently effective

Why?

Because we’re getting in the way of sales. Meaning, we sell in ways that obstructs how the brain is wired to be influenced and to create buying decisions.

What is science in sales?

This means creating a questioning model based on how the brain works. All of us can get better by understanding the science that reveals how our brains make choices. Align how you sell with that science to be more effective and to better serve potential customers.

Are salespeople still necessary?

We still need interpersonal relationships especially for complex sales because interpersonal relationships matter. People still buy from people. Human interaction is still essential.

Two methods for sales influence: How does a brain make a choice?

  1. Peripheral route

This is how you build rapport and trust. These are factors that shape perception heavily.

  1. Central route

The message of the salesperson. What are the key things people must commit to so they buy your product or service.

*Both routes are happening simultaneously called parallel processing so they’re heavily influencing every sales call. It’s the foundation of what going on “behind the scenes.” Learn how to leverage both and you become really effective at selling.

People buy based on emotions.

It’s how we create preferences. Emotions influence our perception. Decades of research can now tell us how we can ethically sell to people’s emotions.

How to change the buyer’s emotional state:

  1. Ask for opinions.

Harvard research found that when people answer opinion questions, the pleasure centers in their brain lineup, naturally putting them in a more positive emotional state.

  1. Talk about topics rich with positive emotions.

Inject positive emotions into your sales conversations.

  1. Focus on voice inflections.

Research shows that voice inflections help people feel positive emotions that people respond more to one another. This is called emotional cognition.

How to convey value effectively:

  1. Look for the distinct value.

Find out how your product or service is different than a competitor and in ways that matter to your buyers.

  1. Reduce the persuasiveness of your competitors.

Leverage distinct value to neutralize your competitors.

Ask for strategic commitment.

You don’t just leave a sales call, you ask for a commitment. Commitments are not just continuations, but look at what commitments are to be made for a buying process to occur.

The 6 Why’s that Help Align Your Sales Process With Getting Commitments:

  1. Why change?
  2. Why now?
  3. Why your industry solution? (Why can’t they create it on their own?)
  4. Why you and your company?
  5. Why your product or service vs. other options?
  6. Why spend the money?

Get commitment to these 6 why’s by strategically injecting these why’s into your sales process. Help your potential customers make these commitments to help them make buying decisions.

The future of sales:

The best days of sales are in front of us because of science. For the first time, we have objective evidence based on our buyers to align how we sell. Most sales is opinion-based. Without real data, you’ve got to come with your A-game and you’re just guessing your way to success.

David’s Major Takeaway:

There is a science to selling and the way something is presented shapes how they perceive and whether or not they will be acted on. The closer your way of selling is aligned with how the brain makes buying decision, the more effective you will be. Anyone can get better at selling by adopting these behaviors. Embrace this science and you can get better!

Episode Resources:

Check out David’s book, The Science of Selling: Proven Strategies to Make Your Pitch Influence Decisions and Close a Deal

For more information about David and his awesome work, visit www.hoffeldgroup.com

Connect with David on Twitter @DavidHoffeld, YouTube, and LinkedIn

SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham

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Accountability, Sales Leader, Donald Kelly, The Best Sales Podcast

TSE 425: TSE Hustler’s League-“Accountability”

Accountability, Sales Leader, Donald Kelly, The Best Sales PodcastDo you work from home? Are you in a silo? Do you work by yourself? Or are you in the field selling on your own? Listen to this episode as I share some strategies that you can apply that will help you stay competitive even when you’re alone.

How to stay competitive effectively even when you’re selling by yourself:

 

  1. Accountability

Have personal goals and share them with your leader or someone in your group to hold you accountable. Having that sense of accountability encourages you to do it.

  1. Competition

Go to meetings where other sellers are. Having someone in your organization to compete with motivates you to push yourself.

  1. Join the TSE Hustler’s League

Every week, we get together and work to help improve ourselves. For this semester, we’re focusing on prospecting. Check out the www.thesalesevangelist.com/hustlers to see a syllabus of what we’re going to be covering.

What are the awesome things you’re getting from this group:

  • Training from me and guest experts
  • Community
  • You will have an accountability partner where you set goals after each session and your partner makes sure that you accomplish your goals in the same manner that your job is to make sure they accomplish their goals. (And you have me to hold yourself accountable too)

Today’s Major Takeaway:

Make yourself perform better by giving yourself accountability and joining a group like the TSE Hustler’s League. Or get someone that can keep you accountable. Without accountability, you’ll stay at a mediocre level. Get accountability in place. Set goals. Compete in a healthy competition.

Episode Resources:

TSE Hustler’s League

Tired of showing your customers plain, old slide decks? Make a powerful, interactive presentation with Prezi Business that your customers will enjoy and remember. Just go to www.prezi.com/TSE to get a full demonstration.

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Ali Mirza, Donald Kelly, Sales, Marketing

TSE 421: Sales vs. Marketing…How To Make Them Work Together

Ali Mirza, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist  People quite often say that “sales and marketing” is like oil and water. They don’t mix together. They don’t get along. My guest today, Ali Mirza shares with us how you can make sure your sales and marketing teams are working cohesively for one goal: success in your company. Find out how you can align them more effectively within your company.

Based in Atlanta, Ali Mirza is the President of Rose Garden Consulting, a sales consulting firm that helps sales professionals and sales teams increase their sales through training, coaching, and mentoring opportunities.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Ali:

Sales and marketing are two different facets of an organization.

  • Many companies confuse these two things. They communicate and transition, but these are two separate entities. In sales, you generate revenue. You pick up the check. You are on the transactionary end of the business.
  • Marketing is the awareness side of the business.The people doing sales should be doing sales while the people doing marketing should be doing marketing.
  • One factor for the tension between sales and marketing is the lack of synergy in their KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators)

Strategies for building the gap between sales and marketing:

  1. Let marketing do all the indirect tasks.

When you let them do the lead generation, their messaging is always different from that of the salesperson’s. So let the marketing folks focus on all the indirect messaging with nominal input from the VP of Sales.

  1. Salespeople should be generating their own leads.

When you are the one generating leads and engaging in that activity, your messaging will be consistent.

Ali’s take on sales trends today and the impact of social selling:

  • The ones not concerned with sales don’t believe that traditional sales works.
  • Content does not always translate into sale.
  • If it’s a sale, treat it as such. Don’t make it any larger than it is.
  • Be human in front of your client.

The Conversational Methodology

  • Being human in front of your clients means having a conversation with your clients. Have the same mentality as if you’re speaking with your uncle where you talk and stand your ground.
  • Don’t start to climb up and start to become a robot doing ten different things and making no sense.
  • Maintain that frame of mind that you have with your uncle and just have a conversation. Just sit down and talk.
  • Whatever they tell you, speak to what they say and not try to remember what you’re supposed to say and how you’re supposed to handle objections. Just be a genuine, likable person and the sale will take place on its own if it’s meant to.
  • The best salespeople are just being their “natural self.”

What is divergent thinking?

Being able to think creatively and just in the moment, not with a regimented set of rules. Do that in sales and you would have the best numbers. Do not overcomplicate the sale. Just have a conversation and you’ll be fine.

A brief overview of Ali’s upcoming book:

Ali talks about his sales methodology of conversational selling which focuses on how to go back to a human frame of mind. Help people buy by understanding their needs. Ask enough questions. Nobody cares about you or your company. Just ask them questions, figure out what they want, and wind them up with that.

Ali’s Major Takeaway:

Be prepared for the conversation. Understand that you’re not being pushy when you go in for a close. If you’ve done everything appropriately leading up to that close and discovered the best solution for the person, if you do not close them and don’t appropriately help them, then you’re not doing them any justice. Closing on somebody is not being pushy.

Episode Resources:

Connect with Ali Mirza through their website www.rosegardenconsulting.com or Tweet him @RGCsales or on Facebook.

Prezi Business is a cool tool that can actually help bridge the gap between your sales and marketing. Create interactive presentations that customers will enjoy and remember. Get a full demonstration of Prezi Business and see the power it has in action. Just go to www.prezi.com/TSE to help you tell more compelling, value-driven stories to your prospects.

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Steve Cook, Donald Kelly, Sales Manager, Sales Team Improvement

TSE 418: Learn How We Blew Our Sales Revenue Out of the Roof By Doing a Few Little Changes

Steve Cook, Donald Kelly, Sales Manager, Sales Team Improvement Today’s episode is primarily about how you can disrupt the selling game by creating a model that is different than what other people are doing. That’s why I’m bringing in Steve Cook on the show today to talk about how his newfound approach to door-to-door selling has blown their sales revenue out of the roof, so to speak.

Steve is the Director of Sales Training for a solar company in New York. What started out as a door-to-door summer sales job has now turned into almost a four-year career. Being the third employee of the company, their organization has now grown heavily, consisting of over 350 employees as of to date. This means growing their revenue from $1M to now over $250M in just a period of 2-3 years. Wow!

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Steve:

Sales strategies to help increase your sales:

  1. Build a relationship up front.

Build relationships of trust (BRT). Disrupt the market by doing things beyond the norm. Change things up by building relationships of trust upfront. Become friends with them before you even talk about sales or about your product.

  1. Filter your market areas.

Once you find one area to work on, make that your little honey pot and go back and forth. Become the “mayor” of your area.

  1. Utilize the power of name-dropping.

Once you’ve gotten to know people, start name-dropping. (“I talked to Susan. I talked to Joe. They’re really interested.”) Then start the conversation from that point.

  1. Avoid using the word “sales.”

Break the stigma of the word “sale.” Instead of saying “sale,” say you sign someone up. Have that mindset that you’re educators, not salespeople.

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for referrals.

Signing people up will start to drive the referral game. Follow the direct approach and ask who you could go talk to right now. Generally, people you’ve built trust with would be willing to just give you anything.

  1. Kill the concern before it arises.

Especially for the skeptics, kill those concerns upfront. It enables you to get rid of the speed bumps up front that you know are going to happen.

  1. Help people feel comfortable about what you’re offering.

The Team Approach: Disrupting the game of door-to-door selling

Have a set or closed model within the industry. What Steve did was that he created a model by splitting his salespeople into two specific roles:

  1. Ambassadors or setters

These people go door-to-door and essentially take the role as being the door-to-door people setting appointments.

  1. Closers

These people are trained on a level where they’re able to answer all questions and sell through the A-Step Closing Process that Steve created. (Steve was closing 95% of the people he sat with and out of that was only 5% cancellation rate)

The Baton Pass: One way to create raving fans

Focus on high-quality “baton pass” for individuals. This allows each individual to focus on their leg of the race and give their 100% in that one specific thing they’re doing as opposed to worrying about doing all legs of the race resulting in a depletion of energy and focus.

Steve’s Major Takeaway:

Don’t be afraid to be different than what the industry is saying. Create meaningful relationships with your customers upfront and this will change the entire game. It takes a lot of courage and patience and a plan. It takes a lot of hard work. Try it and stick to it.

Episode Resources:

Connect with Steve Cook on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Create interactive presentations that customers will enjoy and remember. Get a full demonstration of Prezi Business and see the power it has in action. Just go to www.prezi.com/TSE to help you tell more compelling, value-driven stories to your prospects.

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Sales Coaching, Sales Leaders, Donald Kelly, Gonzalo Salinas

TSE 399: Sales From The Street-“What Type of Sales Dog Are You?”

The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales PodcastThis week’s episode on Sales from the Street is another interesting one as we talk about how different dog breeds actually relate to certain characters in your sales team. Our guest today, Gonzalo Salinas, shares how he overcame a major challenge by understanding what kind of sales dog each member of his team was.

Gonzalo Salinas is the Sales Manager for a litigation support company where they provide services to big law firms or solo law practitioners offering code reporters, videographers, process servers, interpreters, legal translations, and just about anything related to the litigation area.

Listen in to this episode and find out what type of sales dog you think you are!

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Gonzalo:

Major challenge Gonzalo faced:

His training methods as not being a good fit for everyone in his team

A step closer to his resolution:

Gonzalo came across the book, Sales Dogs by Blair Singer

A brief story behind the book:

Blair was the number one salesperson at Xerox back in the 80’s and always competing with him was Robert Kiyosaki, who later published his book Rich Dad, Poor Dad. Robert realized  how important selling was so he called his friend, Blair Singer to his friend and asked if he could publish a book about sales on his book collection; hence, the book Sales Dogs was born.

Realizations Gonzalo got from this book to overcome his challenge:

  1. Every single salesperson is a different breed of dog.

Five different types of salespeople:

  • Chihuahua – The Tech Guy : This one knows everything about the product or service. The prospect has a big level of certainty about them talking about the product or service so they will buy
  • Rottweiler – The Closer : This the one who will bite your neck. They’re aggressive and they go everyday out there looking for a close.
  • Basset hound – The Persistent One : This is the persistent guy who will call you a year or two later. And maybe four years later, clients will buy from them for being persistent.
  • Poodle – The Socialite : This one will do a sales presentation wearing an Armani suit, driving a Maserati, and telling clients they’re doing them a favor by giving them sales presentation. This person has mastered their social skills. People buy from them because they feel important just by having lunch with this salesperson.
  • Labrador – This is the one that will become your friend and who will care about creating a relationship. They don’t care that much on the close but will create such a great relationship, will follow up properly, will follow steps of the sales process, and clients will place on you a big level of trust that they will become your clients forever.
  1. As a general rule, you always have your main breed and a secondary breed.
  • Main breed – 80% that fits your personality
  • Secondary breed – 20%
  1. Make 2-mm changes in every training you provide to your salespeople.

Understand that each of you team members are completely different breeds of dogs.

Results Gonzalo got from tweaking his training:

Increased sales in 90 days by 18%

Gonzalo’s Major Takeaway:

Focus on creating a relationship. The closing is mandatory next step of a great relationship.

Episode Resources:

Connect with Gonzalo through his website www.GonzaloSalinas.com and send him an email.

Sales Dogs by Blair Singer

Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki

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Do BIG THINGS, West Palm Beach, Florida, EMKO, Donald Kelly, Travis Thomas, The Sales Evangelist, LIVE YES AND

 

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, George Santino, Best Sales Podcast

TSE 393: Tips for Building a High Performing Team and Steps to Build a Career from the Ground Up

Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist, George Santino, Best Sales PodcastAs with many other sales people, our goal is to perform well. Today, I’m bringing on George Santino so he can teach us how we can be better working on a team whether you’re the leader of the team or part of a team. He gladly shares with us his stories and experiences he has had with his 20 year- experience at Microsoft. George shares with us how you can think like an entrepreneur and how you can be better working on a team regardless of its size.

Remember that as you go higher and higher up the ranks, it’s not only your personal contribution but also your team’s. So it’s absolutely important to have a highly effective team that gets results because now your review is based on their results.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with George:

Tips for Building a High Performing Team:

  1. Determine what you’re building them for.

Determine what you’re trying to produce and what skills you need to help you do that. Make that assessment as to the needed skills you need from your people.

  1. Determine how your team’s skills will complement your skills.

Determine how your team can bring in a set of skills that you don’t have. Don’t hire a bunch of people that are just like you. You already have you so bring people in who know things you don’t know and things that people can add value from day one.

  1. Give your team permission to speak up.

Make sure you give your team permission to speak up. You want a team of people who can sit down on a project and be willing to express their opinions and be willing to tell you when your opinion might be incorrect. Ultimately, you’re the boss but you want a team who will question things as necessary. Give them the permission to tell you when you’re screwing up. You would rather hear it from your team than from your boss.

  1. Hire a diverse group of people with different perspectives and experiences that will add value to your project.

Always listen to your team’s opinions. In the end, you all deserve the right to say, “I told you so.” This fosters cohesiveness within the team that makes you more effective as a team.

  1. When motivating people, motivate the individuals.

A team of people is like an orchestra with different instruments. Your job is to get the best music you can get out of all the instruments so that when they come together, they make an absolutely beautiful sound.

  1. Create an environment that they’re empowered to voice their opinions.

Take the best ideas regardless of who is in charge or not. Build that kind of environment where people feel safe to say things.

  1. Always give “positive” feedback.

This means that even when they’re wrong, it’s feedback that’s going to have actionable information where people can improve. As a manager, it’s your job to give the employee enough feedback to where they can adjust their course towards exceptional performance. Be comfortable with giving feedback.

  1. Give feedback along the way, not after your employee’s performance.

Tell them what they’re set out to do, what they did, what obstacles they ran into, and the adjustments that need to be made in order for them to be exceptional. Tell them these along the way so they’re given the opportunity to adjust.

How You Can Help Under-Performing Employees:

  1. Determine the cause or what the employee lacks

Sit down with them and determine what happened or what the employee lacks. Try to discover some external factors and if there’s anything you can help them with. You have to dig in. If it’s an issue at home, give them some time off if they need that time. Or help them find some skills they lack through mentorship or internal training. First determine the cause and if there’s something you can do about it. Then put together a plan to bring about that positive change.

2 If your employee is a wrong fit for the job, help them find something else in the company where they can be successful but DO NOT transfer your problem to another team.

If they’re not going to be effective anywhere in the company, let them see that as well. An employee who is not doing a great job is unhappy and is under a tremendous amount of stress. Help them see where they can be better off.

 

How You Can Foster a Good Relationship with Your Boss:

  1. Recognize that managers have different styles.

Determine what is important to them, what they value and what do they reward.

  1. Determine that can you do to help him achieve those goals and objectives.

Your manager has goals. The more you can get your boss to write in his review things that you accomplished, the more indispensable you can become to that boss.

  1. Don’t be afraid to move on if you are going to run into incompetent bosses.

If you’re think you’ve put out your best efforts but you still find your boss to be incompetent or just a real jerk, then move on and look elsewhere. Go to a different company or different department. Life is too short to put up with that. Do not be afraid to make those changes.

Steps to Make Sure You Have a Successful Career:

  1. Pick the right company to go to work for.

Determine where you want to work and not just for the sake of finding a job. Do the research. Determine what these companies do, what they’re trying to accomplish and whether or  not they’re a fit for you.

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask good questions during a job interview.

Answer the questions well obviously. But you’re making a decision too, in fact, it’s more important than the company’s because to you, this is your life and this is your career. So make sure you’re asking intelligent questions to determine if you really want the job.

  1. Once you get the job, truly understand what your job is.

Look into the job description. Is there an employee handbook? Are you going to be assigned a mentor? What are you supposed to be doing? What does success look like to you, to your boss, to the company. Determine what things are valued and rewarded.

  1. Do things better than anybody else.

Put in the time and energy. Be willing to take the scales of work-life balance towards work early in your career because you’re building a foundation that everything builds on from that point forward.

George’s Major Takeaway:

Depend on the people around you. Trust them and empower them so you can truly utilize their diverse sets of skills to build up what you’re trying to build up or sell. Have fun! Celebrate the successes. Take care of your people and reward them. Be honest with your people.

Episode Resources:

Connect with George through his website www.georgeasantino.com or connect with him on Twitter @georgeasantino and YouTube.

Check out George’s book, Get Back Up from the Streets to Microsoft Suites

Please support us in our Indiegogo campaign, a movement to inspire others to Do Big Things. Simply go to www.DoBigThings.net.

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Andy Paul, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales Podcast

TSE 364: Sales From The Street-“Part Two-Tailored Coaching”

Andy Paul, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales PodcastThis is Part Two of Sales from the Street with Andy Paul who graced our show last week and talked about different strategies for lead generation.

Today, he talks primarily about what sales managers can do to be able to cater to sellers using the unique strengths of people in their team.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Andy:

Dealing with scripts:

  • Process-driven versus flexibility
  • An issue on quantity versus quality
  • At the end of the day, it’s still a person talking to a person
  • Take advantage of the strengths of people in your team.

Strategies for managers:

  1. Coach your people.

Your first job is to coach your people because your success is completely dependent on their success.

  1. Manage the people, not the metrics.

It’s all about managing your people to make them more effective so their metrics improve.

Andy’s Major Takeaway:

Play to your strengths. Automation is good but these processes and tools don’t actually take the place of actual selling. Get yourself in a position where you can play to win.

Episode Resources:

Connect with Andy thru email at andy@zerotimeselling.com  or on LinkedIn and Twitter @zerotimeselling

Check out Andy Paul’s podcast Accelerate!

Essentialism by Greg McKeown

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The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, Donald C. Kelly

 

Sales Coaching, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Sales Training

TSE 324: Sales From The Street-“Coaching”

Sales Coaching, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Sales TrainingToday, I’m going to talk to you about sales coaching, specifically how sales managers.And here are the common questions I have come across.

  • Should a sales manager sell? Or should he/she be a manager/coach?
  • Should you hire your top rep to become your sales manager?

Many companies hire a coach but what I noticed to work effectively is when the company has a manager in place who serves as a guide or a coach to help the sales team perform.

However, some companies look for their next manager by looking at their top performing rep. Now, if they are performing well, why would you take them out of a selling situation?

Some cons when taking the top performing rep out of the field to become a sales leader:

  1. They’re not selling so you lose out on some revenue right away.
  2. The presence of some biases or conflicts of interest and then distrust begins to happen leading to a disconnect between management and sales people.

Strategies to avoid biases:

  1. Get people some training and help so they can perform well.
  2. Set up their earnings based on the performance of the team.

The power of having a coach:

  • It challenges you and helps you set goals.
  • It helps you find out your weaknesses and where you need help the most.
  • It gives you help, direction, and guidance

Major Takeaway:

Hire someone from the outside to be a sales coach or manager that’s going to come in and be there full time to dedicate, guide, train and help your organization. Don’t just take your top reps out and make them sales managers. First, find out if they desire to do that in the first place.

Episode Resources:

Coaching Salespeople into Sales Champions by Keith Rosen

Get a free audiobook download and a 30-day free trial at audibletrial.com/tse with over 180,000 titles to choose from for your iPhone, Android, Kindle or mp3 player.

The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, Donald C. Kelly

 

Warren Shiver, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales Podcast

TSE 301: 7 Steps To Sales Force Transformation

Warren Shiver, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Podcast, Best Sales Podcast A solid, performing salesforce is one of the most crucial elements in any organization. However, many salespeople tend to exhibit a strong resistance to change even when it’s called for. Change can cause a dramatic increase in your overall sales success but you have to make sure you did the right change.

So I’m bringing in Warren Shiver today to share some great insights into bringing change or transformation within an organization, why it’s needed, when it’s needed, and which parts of the organization need to be involved.

Warren is the author of the book 7 Steps to Sales Force Transformation. He is also the founder of Symmetrics Group, where they specifically focus on B2B sales effectiveness around sales forces, sales processes, skills, and training.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with Warren:

The inspiration behind Warren’s book:

Most salespeople are more resistant to change than other functional areas

Change versus transformation:

  • Most sales organizations are doing well.
  • Change can be done through training, technology, or tool improvement but not a wholesale change.
  • Companies that are a result of a merger or a competitive change, have a relatively outdated sales force where transformation is needed.

What do you need? Change or transformation?

  • Look at what’s driving your need for change.
  • How compelling your driver is will dictate the level of change you should undertake.
  • Treat your transformation or change effort like an internal sale

Should you change even when you’re hitting quota?

  1. Look at the top performers in the organization.

Identify what they’re doing well and use that in terms of the change you’re driving (ex. process, methodology, etc.)

  1. Look at your current state and where you want to go.

Look if what’s making a top performer successful today is sustainable.

What parts of the business need to be involved in the sales transformation?

  • Marketing (#1)
  • Operations and supply chain
  • IT
  • HR (recruiting profiles, competency & talent development, compensation)

Creating a vision

  • What is the value you’re going to bring in the future?
  • How is your sales force still relevant in 1 or 5 years time in maintaining relevance with customers and maintaining competitive differentiation?
  • The mindset of consultative selling

Building a personal brand versus relying on a company brand:

Build a brand around your expertise through blogs, white papers, etc.

How to know the right metrics to best predict sales success:

  • Depends on your selling model, company, vision, current state, and what you’re trying to drive in terms of change
  • Get down with a critical view

Communication of status and results:

  • The need for sustained, committed, and authentic leadership
  • First level sales leaders – the lever or linchpin of your change
  • Equip your first-level leaders to model what it could look like
  • Be able to coach and reinforce it and communicate it

Success as a barrier to sales transformation:

  • Difficulty to create a “burning” platform among your top performers
  • The challenge of finding that leader with a transformational mindset

Episode Resources:

7 Steps to Sales Force Transformation

Sale Force, Sales Management Book, Donald Kelly, Warren Shiver

SymmetricsGroup.com

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The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, Donald C. Kelly

TK, ToutApp, The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly

TSE 300: Is Sales Enablement Working For You?

TK, ToutApp, The Sales Evangelist, Donald KellyThe concept of sales enablement is pretty much becoming a buzzword in the sales world today, but what is it exactly?

Mr. Enablement here is going to give us great new insights into that. TK is the founder and CEO of ToutApp, a sales success platform where they offer a one stop shop for customers to prospect more, close more deals, and manage smarter – all this plugged into Gmail, Outlook, Salesforce, and more as one streamlined sales process.

Today, we talk more about sales enablement, how it can help any sales organization enable their sales team and achieve greater success, and how it has taken the sales training process into a whole new level.

Here are the highlights of my conversation with TK:

What is Sales Enablement?

  • Adding a specific person dedicated to making sure the sales team is successful
  • Traditionally, people spend on sales training. Today, the landscape has evolved.
  • The version 2 of sales trainers where they figure out the systems and processes put into place so training is reinforced and every rep is following best practices and winning
  • Sales enablement doesn’t have to be a dedicated person. It could be a role that someone hones.

Drivers that create sales enablement:

  • A sense of “tools fatigue”
  • A need to look at these things as a whole to come up with the right set of tools and processes to make a rep successful

The right candidate for sales enablement:

  1. Prior sales experience
  2. Empathize with salespeople in their day-to-day lives
  3. The ability to look at the things you can give to reps to increase win rates and close deals faster

Good sales enablement vs. bad sales enablement:

The best sales enablement people treat their sales people as their customers trying to constantly figure out how to make their lives easier.

The role of customers in the sales enablement process:

  • Think about your customer as a sales enabled person or the different segments of a sales team.
  • Figure out what their needs are and how it differs.

What the ToutApp can do for you:

  • Bakes in your sales process into the software so it helps the rep navigate the sales process
  • Helps define key individuals so you can focus your efforts and not waste time
  • Streamlines emails
  • Integrates different platforms into the sales process
  • Live Feed – tells you exactly what’s going on in your sales process
  • Bridges the disconnect between marketing and sales to achieve overall success

 

TK’s Major Takeaway:

Do you have a piece of paper or document that clearly codifies your sales process? (Where you know the stages you go through and how you move from one stage to the next) That’s the first step of sales enablement. Then pick tools to scale that for the rest of your team.

Episode Resources:

Check out their website www.toutapp.com or email TK directly at tk@toutapp.com. Whether you’re part of a SMB or a large enterprise, I highly recommend you check out their software and see how they can help you and change the way you do things around more effectively, more productively.

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The Sales Evangelist, Donald Kelly, Donald C. Kelly

Vision, Sales Training, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist

TSE 137: Without Vision, Your Sales Team Will Fail

Vision, Sales Training, Donald Kelly, The Sales Evangelist Having a Vision

Are you like Alice in Wonderland who really didn’t know where to go? Well, that doesn’t really work in sales. It’s important to be able to have a vision of where you want to go.

WHERE DO YOU WANT TO GO?

If a company doesn’t have a vision, the sales people will be moving towards different directions and nothing is going to get accomplished properly.

Here’s a personal experience of mine during my early years in sales: I worked for a smaller company where executives didn’t have a clue of where they wanted to go and they didn’t know who their ideal customers were.

The result? The company got dissolved.

Unfortunately, a vision of wanting to make money doesn’t really pan out in the long run. A great strategy should be in place. The right people should be in place.

In contrast, I also got the chance to work in an organization with leadership from the top. The executive level had a clear-cut understanding; down to the managers and the team. There was a lot of room for creativity in line with the company’s vision.

The result? The company soared.

Here are 3-Key Steps to Help You Create Your Vision:

  1. Sit down to find out your ideal customer.
  2. Figure out where the company wants to go.

What does your company desire? Where do you want to go? How do you want to do it?

  1. Figure out your personal goal.

What’s your “why?” Why are you doing what you’re doing?

Clear your mind of doubt and keep that big VISION!