Ok…. This one may be painful! So, be it. I love the people in the world of “sales” and you all seriously need some HELP!
YOU are STUCK! Deeply, completely, seriously… STUCK in the mud!!! Spinning your wheels with all of your might, giving it more and more throttle, praying that THIS time it will all work and you will magically find your way out of the mud you are wallowing in.
You know this to be true. The data that we have shared REPEATEDLY tells us we are in TROUBLE! Turnover in B2B sales individual contributors is about 50% inside of 11 months. Entire teams are gone within 2 years including the line and most mid-level management. Now more than 75% of YOUR clients clearly state that they want ZERO participation from an external salesperson in their decision-making process.
We know… “you’re different!”… maybe you are. OK! With the turnover rate as high as it is, the value-added capability of any of today’s salespeople is directly related to the amount of time that they have been “trained” at their current company. So how good can we be with an average of 6-10 months of training under our belts when we go face to face, or screen to screen, with that next client?
The clients have answered that directly and loudly… 75% of them have said “DO NOT CALL ON THEM”! Why, because there is ZERO value being added by nearly all of the salespeople that they have communicated with, so they DO NOT CALL ON THEM “Brush” is being used to cover EVERY salesperson that they experience. One size does fit all…because in this case, the reality is that probably 97% of those salespeople that the clients now consider “worthless” are stuck in a needs analysis, selling them something, an endless loop, that totally misses the value that they CAN provide if they were properly trained and actually did CARE!
YOU are STUCK!!! But we need more output(sales)!!! What the heck, let’s just put the throttle down to the floor and see what we get. Let’s just do MORE!!!
More leads, more calls, more appointments, more CRM input, more quotes, more deal reviews with management, MORE funnel…..yea, that must be good!! Keep the throttle to the floor. That result, however, will end up in a lot of smoke, more mud in places that you did not know even existed, and likely a motor that goes really QUIET after a REALLY big BANG!
WE DON’T NEED MORE…. WE NEED DIFFERENT AND BETTER!
Today our thinking somehow accepts a series of metrics that simply create nothing more than mediocrity and complacency. This morphs into a total avoidance of risk, which is actually the highest change motivator in clients if you will just engage with them in THEIR world.
Deal close rates are now OK as they drop into single digits. Only closing 3-4 % of your deals… just need MORE deals, right?
WRONG, need BETTER deals, and that can be done!
In the early days of industrial sales, the IBM team selling process was a dominant way of engaging with clients. Their management team took serious employment action with salespeople that had close rates of lower than 30%... 30% was a problem. Different times… I know!
But in today’s world of such low numbers being OK, we remove the drive to GROW. If we are to GROW we must change what we are doing today, or the results will simply look like today. If you are OK with NO growth, good luck. If not, then we must change what we think to change what we believe to get different results. AND WE CAN DO ALL OF THAT!
Most sales teams are saturated. Doing all that they can with all that they have and maybe adding a few resources… up until now. With an average close rate of, let's say 12%, to be very generous, you are very hard-pressed to grow that. Remember these are likely new pieces of business and only represent a small portion of your ongoing business stream. If you are aiming at GROWING you must grow existing and new business. In reality, you will need to triple your close rate to have ANY impact on your revenue stream 3%, 4 %, and 12% win rates won’t create growth. YOU NEED MORE!!!! Yep…. MORE. And you get that by changing what you are doing to get BETTER opportunities.
What would new skills would you need, what would you need to learn to double and triple your close rates with your current team? It is truly possible!
BETTER trumps MORE exponentially.
OK… so enough of the challenge. Here is your HOW, HOW do you create change in what you do that delivers BETTER? It is in your hands.
The link below is to a short video that Sharon-Drew Morgen and I recorded the other day. Give yourself a few minutes to listen curiously for THE answer to HOW do I make this change. She will touch on it, and guide you to her web site. Her site is a huge library of HOW.
Want to get UNSTUCK? Call Sharon-Drew (address her that way please) with your single biggest client challenge and ask her for help. You will find an amazing amount of specificity, action, creativity, and direct kindness!
This will take courage, strength, personal desire for excellence, and a willingness to make a difference WITH others around you in ways beyond selling, beyond your “stuff”. You will need to CARE about those you serve. If that is not in your belief system, that’s ok, you just need to ask for a tow truck to get your STUCK IN THE MUD ‘Jeep” out of the mess that it is in. If you are in AZ give me a call, my Rubicon is equipped for ANYTHING (photos available on request).
One last time perhaps…
OK…LET’S ROLL! The mud is hardening and we are stuck up to the axles…