As people get more and more refined with their sales process they begin to execute on the individual steps of the sale with more confidence.
Consider this ... your personal success has far more to do with you than with market conditions. In good times and bad, top performers remain top performers. Why? There has been an enormous amount of study into what accounts for the huge variances in sales success from one individual to another. We have heard Brian Tracy and others talk about the concept of Winning Edge as "small differences in ability translating into enormous differences in results."
We often find ourselves coaching managers and helping them clarify what their true role is in sales management. Sometimes they look puzzled when we say: "Your job is not really managing sales or even growing sales." The sales manager's highest value comes from developing people.
It's RSP season again and for some reason, this is when sales people start to get lazy. They know they should be getting a client to acknowledge a problem first before they present a solution (i.e. a product) but for some reason, when it comes to selling RSP's at this time of year they resort back to a money grab by just asking if they have contributed yet. Oh, I know that is not their intention, but by just asking someone if they have contributed yet, that's essentially what they are doing.
There is a simple rule we advocate to help people avoid coming across as being pushy sales people: Don't present a solution (product) to a problem (need) that is not been acknowledged by the client. Generally speaking most people dislike having someone try to sell them a product that they don't need. By asking good questions you can get a client to acknowledge that they have a need which clears the path for you to comfortably present a solution.
If there was one thing that would make sales managers more successful it would be this: Sacrifice complexity for consistency; Adopt a "less is more" attitude and approach.
Results will be more evident when managers quit making sales coaching a "mile wide and an inch deep".
Financial institutions have strategies and plans for almost every part of the business. They have marketing plans, IT infrastructure plans, plans for how much risk they will tolerate, and plans for what they will do if a disaster strikes. Most of these plans are very detailed and well thought out. Unfortunately, when it comes to the sales plan - the plan on how their teams will cross-sell products and services to existing clients - many financial institutions are woefully unprepared.
Watching the Olympic Games coverage and the in-depth analysis provided in slow motion by sports physiologists got me thinking about sales process and the variance in results we see between individuals playing the same game. The sports analogy for sales has been used so often because it really does fit. In both pursuits the difference in results comes down to preparation and desire. Preparation is technique, practice, and effort. Desire is that attitude or drive to win.
We deal with a lot of lenders that have a requirement to sell insurance on their lending products. It's a big money maker for the financial institution and there is a lot of pressure to have high insurance penetration numbers. The challenge is that many lenders are "untrained" when it comes to insurance sales. They go into it with a bad attitude that affects their ability to sell. To begin with, they feel like the insurance is overpriced so that affects their ability to talk about the products with any real conviction.
There are many reasons why people procrastinate when buying your products: they might not like the price, they may not think the product you selected will work for them, and/or they might not like you or your company. Rather than tell us exactly what they are thinking these kind-hearted individuals let us down easy with objections like "Let me think about it and I'll get back to you" or "I think I'll keep looking around and I'll let you know".