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Developing Great Sales Managers for Inside Sales Teams

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Recently I had the opportunity to speak virtually at the Sales Acceleration Summit. This one day online event featured over 80 sales and marketing experts and attracted over 24,000 visitors. The focus of my presentation was best practices for developing great frontline sales managers (Watch Video).

Difficult Sales Negotiations Require the Right TACTICs

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As much as we want sales negotiations with our customers to be a mutually beneficial process, there are times when we face an extremely tough negotiator on the other side who view negotiating as a zero sum game. Sometimes these negotiators can even be adversarial, employing manipulative or even abusive negotiation techniques. So what should you do when you find yourself dealing with an adversarial or manipulative negotiator? 

Compelling Customer Needs Drive Action

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Asking great sales questions is an essential selling skill that all sales professionals must master. No surprise here since questions help us identify customer needs. Discussing customer needs and how our solutions addresses those needs is the foundation of a successful sales conversation.  But what happens if a customer decides to live with their current situation?

Why Customers Raise Sales Objections

Overcoming sales objections

In a perfect world, customers wouldn’t raise any sales objections. Sales professionals would precisely identify each customer’s needs, and then present a carefully crafted solution that neatly addresses each of these needs. Customers would then, of course, clearly understand how they would benefit and quickly make a favorable purchase decision.

Sales Negotiations: 5 Tactics to Use with Procurement

Sales negotiations

We often hear from our clients about the challenges they have these days negotiating with Procurement. This is no surprise. Over the past few years, procurement departments have become more powerful, more sophisticated, and at times seem dead-set on commoditizing every aspect of our solutions. For sales professionals, sales negotiations with Procurement is an ongoing struggle of dealing with third party negotiators, blind RFP’s, reverse auctions, commodity pricing, and hardball sales negotiating tactics. 

Sales Training: Leveraging Technology to Engage Millennials

Training Millenials

As we speak with senior sales leaders, one of the biggest challenges they face is how to onboard and train millennials. This is particularly true for more established sales organizations who have used traditional classroom based sales training programs as their primary method for training new sales hires.

Selling Value: Quantifying Intangible Benefits for Your Customers

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Below is the 3rd blog in our series on selling on value. In the last blog, How to Sell Value to your Customer, we discussed four steps to help you effectively sell value. In this blog, we are going to focus on one of the most challenging aspects of selling value: intangible benefits.

The Business Case for Sales Training

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Ask any sales training professional and they will tell you that a common question among key sales training stakeholders is “What ROI can we expect from a sales training program?”  The challenges in measuring the effectiveness of sales training for a sales organization are numerous, including defining success metrics.  Effective measurement is also complicated by other factors that may influence results such as competitive, economic and market conditions.

Implementing a Sales Management Training Program

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In my previous blog, Sales Managers: How to Navigate the First Major Career Pivot, I discussed why it is often hard for the sales people to make the transition to sales manager.  Part of this challenge is attributable to the inherently different job functions of a salesperson and a sales managers (individual contributor vs. manager of others). 

How to Develop a Sales Coaching Mindset: Use the 3 A's

Sales Coaching

As regular readers of this blog know, we firmly believe that sales managers must master the critical skill of sales coaching in order to maximize the sales performance of their teams (see here, here, and here). The role of a sales coach cannot be over-estimated for any high performing team. One common obstacle that many sales managers encounter when they try to coach their teams is getting “buy-in” – i.e., convincing a salesperson to try a new approach or change a behavior. While it is easy to blame the salesperson in these situations, sometimes it is the sales managers approach to sales coaching that is the root cause of the problem. All too often these managers engage in “telling” as opposed to collaborative sales coaching

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