3 Skills your Sales Team should be proficient in 2018
"Sell this," the panel told the three salespeople, handing each of them a fat, sweet, pomaceous fruit, the apple.
The first one picked up his share and tried to calmly explain the history, its evolution and before he could get to the point the stage was passed on to the next person. This chap didn't repeat the mistakes of his predecessor, he started off well, trying to engage his panel, talked about the juiciness, the fruit's texture, made them feel it too but then the third one, this woman nailed it. She started with great enthusiasm, indulged in a dialogue with the people and included everyone around too and the cherry on the top was when she cut the apple for them to taste it.
According to a new study of more than 230 buyers, 12% of the salespeople are exceptional, 23% good, 38% are average and 27% poor. Now let us take a moment to reflect on these numbers. Imagine for a second, if these 27% improved and the 23% became exceptional how drastically will the organisation's revenue change and let's not talk about the bonuses the company will shower you with.
Change is the only constant
In today's ever-changing world, business leaders want nothing but fast and sustainable growth. The Sales Team, the backbone of the company achieves these targets, complements with highly demanding, more aware and information-rich customers who are redefining traditional selling.
To survive the world and to reap its benefits, you need to grow with it. The sales representatives, who are the face of the company, need to be a step ahead of their customers. This challenge of building winning sales team isn't a simple task and many times salespeople unaware of the reasons for their poor performance, blame it on the factors out of their control.
So come let’s hit the roadblocks with learning goal orientation-
As automation and technology take over the business world, the dependence on people skills has greatly reduced. But now a high EQ will mark you out in the crowd of 2018.
The right balance of empathy and confidence makes all the difference. Salespeople do not have to be pushy and aggressive, neither they should get too comfortable and clingy with the customer but should have the ability to effectively read, influence and control their emotions with them.
These skills are very much the need of the hour and the good news is, that if you don't have them they can be developed. But first thing first, how to figure out who needs what? Long hours of introspection would be too time-consuming and tiring, hence behavioural assessments will help you guide through.
Just as social networks in real life, social media in reel life has played a huge part in the business world. Social selling which involves leveraging your social networks to search for the right prospect, build trusted relationship, makes all the difference by getting your product into the spotlight. The world has become a global village with everyone being connected through screens, people are more active online than their presence offline. For the same reason, a strong professional social media presence makes the buyer feel that the company is an active participant in the world of businesses.
According to LinkedIn, 78% of the salespeople who engage in social selling outsell their colleagues.
A video will be one of the major trends in 2018, playing an important part in the buyer journey right from the beginning. Honing these skills requires hit and trial with different ideas, styles and then picking the most effective one.
For B2B sellers, if they can learn the art of engaging colleagues and prospects, then this will transcend into lead generation and conversion rates. And if psychometric, behavioural assessments can help companies figure out what the army of salespeople need, then go for it without second thoughts.
Make it your own
Smart people possessed the capacity to believe dumb things.
But not anymore, the smart are smarter than the smartest of salesmen, they can no longer be lured by just smiles it is information that they crave.
Knowledge is power and in the world of selling it converts into more sales. Now this divides into 2.
- Product Knowledge-The professional who goes into in the field without knowing his product ‘in and out' faces a tough time pitching it to others. People don't buy products, they buy the benefits.
- Buyer evolution- Buyers today control what sales once did, the flow of information, therefore it's important to redirect focus to this segment, that's right understanding them will book more meetings, create stronger pipeline and increase revenues.
The extensive product knowledge is one- third of what a salesperson needs, to become a high performer and this piece of cake is not a small one, so better invest in it.
Never. Be. Closing (on yourself)
Replay 2015, The Death Of a B2B Salesman, predicts the elimination of about 1 million U.S. B2B salespeople. When you see these findings at a global level, the numbers are unpropitious.
If the company sees itself walking into 2018 without giving a thought to these skills, then better be prepared for the impending danger that will suffocate you till 2020.