Fire Up Your Sales Enablement Strategy

Fire Up Your Sales Enablement Strategy

There are three common causes of poor selling performance. Too often, we don’t spend enough time speaking with high-capacity buyers/customers. Also, we’re unable to verbalize the most important sales communication in a convincing and credible way. We can also demonstrate poor skills when executing the fundamental consultative sales process. Since the goal of sales enablement programs is to remedy this, why do they so often fail? Most sales training programs do not have nearly enough practice and repetition—with increasingly rigorous coaching—to break bad habits and reinforce new ones. In a study cited in Scott Edinger’s Forbes piece, How Great Sales…read more >
The Holiday Office Party Survive-&-Thrive Guide

The Holiday Office Party Survive-&-Thrive Guide

It's that time of the year. Ugly sweaters get their 15 minutes of fame. Malls echo with endless loops of holiday muzak. Folks are planning what food to prepare/bring/cater. And planners are getting headcounts for their annual holiday parties. Here are some survival and safety tips. The upcoming (Dec. 9) movie Office Christmas Party highlights how management would probably not want your company party to turn out this year. (Typically, trashing one’s office is frowned upon.) I’d suggest letting management know that you would like to have an office party before throwing one before attempting to throw it without them.…read more >
The Best Sales Training Content in 2016

The Best Sales Training Content in 2016

As we wrap up 2016, our team wanted to share a list of the 13 best sales training content sources we found this year to help us grow, achieve goals, and improve our performance. Check out the top books we loved, podcasts we listened to, TED talks we watched, and digital publishers we visited most often. Cheers! For the Intrepid Bookworm: The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg A great read for learning what motivates us and how we can change. This book was recognized by The Financial Times as…read more >
5 Ways Not to Sell Me Something

5 Ways Not to Sell Me Something

I’m a busy person, with authority to buy or recommend products and services for my company. Naturally, that means I’m a target for every intrepid salesperson. This includes companies with things I actually need and many with things I don’t. Here are five ways that will lead to sales failure, even if you’re selling something I want. Full disclosure: I go all cranky curmudgeon when it comes to unsolicited sales calls. Whatever positive attitude I had will evaporate the instant it’s obvious I’m being pitched for something. I pay attention to Caller ID. Barely one in twenty sales emails will…read more >
Reinventing the Wheel for Sales Training (Part 2)

Reinventing the Wheel for Sales Training (Part 2)

Last week, I went on a bit of a rant on the odd width between U.S. rail tracks—as a metaphor for the “that’s-how-it’s-always-been-done” approach to sales training. This week, I’ll offer a modest proposal. Instead of repeating a dry litany of sales goals and metrics, what if we “flooded the zone” with truly great sales performances? There’s an old saying: “practice makes perfect.” It’s absolute nonsense. Practice makes permanent. It’s the practice of perfection that makes us more perfect. And that requires a demonstration of what perfect is. This seemingly obvious element is nearly always missing in the practice and…read more >
4 Resources For Improving Your Professional Communications Skills

4 Resources For Improving Your Professional Communications Skills

This is the season to be thankful. As a salesman, I appreciate all the resources I have that help me polish my professional communication skills. Here are my top four: Without good communication skills, I’d be washed up as a salesman. Fortunately, through the years, I’ve discovered lots of great resources to improve these. It was hard to narrow these down to just four, but here are the ones I’ve been able to use multiple times throughout any given day. 1. Recommended Reading Yes, I know. There are thousands of books on communication. But my absolute favorite is Crucial Conversations,…read more >
The Key to Making Money in Sales

The Key to Making Money in Sales

Like most of America, I woke up last week to the surprise of Donald Trump as our next President. (ANNOUNCEMENT: To spare you any more election fatigue, there will be no more political mentions in this blog!) However, the event made me curious to check out some past episodes of the TV show, The Apprentice. I didn’t follow the show back in the day, but it turns out that it’s theme song is “For the Love of Money” by the O’Jays. I love this song! In fact it’s been my ringtone for the past five years. (After you’ve enjoyed it…read more >
Reinventing the Wheel for Sales Training (Part 1)

Reinventing the Wheel for Sales Training (Part 1)

In the U.S., the width between train tracks is always four feet, eight & one-half inches. This odd standard was chosen by an early 19th Century British engineer and is used in 55% of all rail systems today. Sales training today is loaded with this kind of “that’s the way it’s always been done” inertia. It’s time to re-think that particular wheel. In 1825, civil engineer George Stephenson designed the Stockton & Darlington Railway in northern England. He chose four feet, eight inches as the gauge or width between rails (adding a half inch later on) because he was familiar…read more >
5 Ways Online Sales Training Can Fail (And What You Can Do About It)

5 Ways Online Sales Training Can Fail (And What You Can Do About It)

Since the birth of the Web, proponents have dreamed of the perfect “virtual classroom,” where geographic and financial barriers to learning are no more. Sadly, online training in general—and online sales training in particular—too often fall short. Here are five danger signs, and some good ways to avert them. The phrase “online training,” like its predecessor “computer-based training” can mean different things to different people. To some, it’s putting a WebEx or PowerPoint recording on YouTube. To others, it’s hosting a full-blown LMS—complete with online quizzes and compliance metrics. In any case, the dangers of failure are surprisingly similar to…read more >
Real Coaches Train Us To Do!

Real Coaches Train Us To Do!

In sports and other types of performance coaching, team members are shown—repeatedly—how to DO things, and eventually how to do them well. Too often, that’s what’s missing in sales coaching. Imagine for a moment you wanted to learn a new sport like tennis or golf. Or perhaps you wanted to learn to play guitar or piano. So you look for a teacher or coach to help you. If that person is a good teacher-coach, then he’s going to spend a lot of time demonstrating what to do. He’ll demonstrate how to swing the tennis racquet or golf club—or hold the…read more >