You’re in sales. You’ve got a product to sell. Boom. Done. Then on to the next deal. Your technique? You use the sales enablement tools your company has spent millions on to help you be more productive. At least that’s what your organization hopes is happening.
Are you ready for 2017?
Let’s talk about resolutions you can keep when it comes to upping your sales mojo.
Every day we hear from sales leaders about how their sales teams are overwhelmed and under prepared when it comes to selling to C-suite decision makers. Given the vague directive to “do their homework,” many salespeople—and the sales enablement and field marketing teams that support them—tend to focus on things like contact information, org charts, and social media links. While these things are helpful and important, they are not adequate for preparing to have a business conversation with a CXO.
If you’re like most people, a networking event or cocktail party filled with unfamiliar faces does not top of your list of favorite activities. Have you ever skipped a conference networking reception in favor of room service and a movie? I have. Most of us dread these gatherings because conversation is typically dull, repetitive and at worst, awkward. “What do you do?” “Where are you from?” “What do you think of the (insert team name) chances this season?” We’ve all been there.
Longing for the good old days? You know, the Mad Men school of closing sales over leisurely three martini lunches or a game of golf? Yeah, enterprise B2B selling is harder these days. There are so many more stakeholders who have a role in the buying decision—especially when it comes to major technology purchases. And, increasingly, it’s top-level management—those in the C-suite—who are making these critical decisions. It doesn’t help that global enterprise IT spending growth has been flat—at 1 percent in 2016—according to Gartner. And yet even that small percentage still lays a lot of budget on the table—around $2.7 trillion globally.
Enterprise sales teams are under more pressure than ever. Customer budgets are tighter. There are more decision makers touching every deal. Sales cycles are getting longer and more deals dead end with no decision made. Sales teams are investing months—even years—nurturing relationships that seem as if they will never pay off.
Corporate executives at large, global companies live a rarefied existence. They also have immense responsibility. Their organizations employ thousands--sometimes hundreds of thousands--and their decisions can literally change the world. These powerful leaders come from many different backgrounds and beliefs and all have experience and perspectives on what it means--and what it takes--to lead. Here are some compelling leadership perspectives from some of the of the world’s most successful CXOs on what true leadership looks like to them.
Success in sales isn’t easy, so it’s important to celebrate the big wins--and draw inspiration from past success when times get tough. Here are two sales success stories we know you’ll love.
In sales there is constant pressure to land newer, bigger customers. While acquiring net new customers is important, you may be leaving money on the table by neglecting to grow sales with the customers you already have.
Picture this: a top sales rep at a major financial institution consistently ranks in the top 5% of his peers. He is knowledgeable, efficient, hard working, and passionate about bringing success to his customers, himself and his organization. Over the years, he has proven that he can achieve--and exceed--his goals. Then one day, management decides to roll out new technology and processes to help reps stay organized and identify greater opportunities, while giving management new reporting capabilities and insight into sales activity. Despite good intentions on all sides, the change does more to hinder the sales rep than empower him. Over time, he grows frustrated with the new system--and his management-- because not only does he not see any value, but it actually wastes his time. To cope, he either stops using the technology entirely or simply inputs minimal info just to “meet expectations.” Either way, the organization loses.