Employees have to feel comfortable and secure at work, but the pressure of making profits and selling particular numbers each day can result in a toxic sales culture. As the leader or manager, you have influence and power, which means you could be the one creating that toxic environment. Your goal is to motivate your employees, but a tough-love attitude can quickly cross over to abusive. While some people believe that being unforgiving and tough is the best way to manage everyone, the truth is that each person on your team must be managed differently.
What enforces the rules with one person may not work with another. You can scream and yell with some people, and that’s the only way to get the point across, but with most people, politeness and compassion work much better. Read on to learn about the characteristics of a toxic sales culture and the affects it can have on an organization.
Selling strategically is a phrase that most sales people have heard and wonder about. It’s no question that sales professionals are always looking for the most efficient and effective way to sell their products or services. While strategic selling isn’t necessarily easy, a carefully laid out plan can boost revenue and help your business gain an upper hand against your competitors. Continue reading “How To Sell Strategically”
Top salespeople don’t just have meetings; they are mentally prepared for meetings. Just as you would make sure you have the demo, the samples, the PowerPoint or brochures as well as the product video all keyed up on the tablet, top salespeople also take the time to prepare mentally. Are you mentally prepared for your next sales meeting? Here are 4 key attributes of mentally prepared sales professionals.
1) Mentally Prepared Sales Professionals are Organized and Focused
Top sales professionals keep a great record of their clients and their information. They have the names of their clients’ spouses, information about their passions, hobbies, and the industry they are selling into.
Mental preparation for sales presentations and meetings are a part of mental discipline. It is often not boring or a lot of memorization if sales reps are genuine and authentic. Get into a problem-solving mindset rather than sales mode with clients.
2) They Study the Unique Sales Problems of Their Clients
Mentally prepared sales professionals consider the information on the client already known, what would be helpful to know in this meeting, and how the product or service offers value.
In this way, mental preparation is a lot like putting together a jigsaw puzzle. In going over current information, the mentally prepared sales professionals may find missing pieces. Reviewing client information provides a framework for details and data for the sales rep.
This is vital to understanding the story and challenges that the customer is facing. By discovering these details in authentic and genuine conversations, the product or service becomes the solution rather than just a part of the puzzle.
3) They Are Experts at Adjusting Their Sales Tactics Based on the Client
It is very common for a sales professional to find a method of selling which works very well with one client. A common mistake is to develop a thought that this sales technique or method is the “perfect” option for all customers.
Customers are very different. This difference extends even to companies within the same industry. What works as a solution for one company may not be needed or effective in another company. Locking into a mindset of one sales solution for all customers is not only self-limiting, but it is likely to be self-destructive.
A better option is to maintain an open mindset about trying new things. This also goes back to not taking rejection personally. In some cases, the deal-breaker may be the approach that was used. Experimenting with different approaches and methods differently will keep the sales professional focused on the buying signals sent by the client.
For example, one customer may want to spend 10 or 15 minutes sharing personal stories and getting to know you as an individual. Another client may want to talk about the problems they are experiencing, and a third client may want to include a team approach to making a purchasing decision. Some customers may want information emailed while others will want to hear your presentation at the meeting. Understanding each customer will impact how you structure and plan your time with the customer.
4) They Communicate in a Relaxed and Genuine Manner
By being flexible and carefully discerning what approach is best for the client, top salespeople vary their presentations, communication styles, and interactions with the customers. This flexibility comes across as authentic, natural, and not stilted or forced. It also gives you additional ideas for how to be comfortable in trying new approaches with future customers.
Not being rigid also allows the successful sales rep to quickly read a customer and adjust their style in the first few minutes of a meeting. Challenging yourself to meet the best style for working with a customer is a great mindset for success and one which will have an immediate positive impact on any meeting.
Sales professionals can learn a lot from sales scenes in movies. Hollywood may seem like an odd place to look for inspiration but rest assured, there are plenty of invaluable sales lessons to be learned from Hollywood’s cult classics. Learning how to handle customer objections during sales calls, dealing with difficult clients, or refining your sales strategy, can improve your selling skills. When it comes to handling customer objections, these key sales lessons from Tommy Boy can teach sales professionals a thing or two about how to effectively deal with customers’ concerns. Learn how to navigate the world of sales by taking a cue from these two classic sales scenes in Tommy Boy.
How NOT to Handle Customer Objections
There are key sales lessons from Tommy Boy that teach you how NOT to prepare for sales meetings. Tommy (played by Chris Farley) prepares for the upcoming sales presentation meetings by frantically pacing to overcome his nerves as Richard (played by David Spade) tries to prepare him with some classic sales advice: “We don’t take no for an answer.” What follows is a hilarious montage of sales meetings with Tommy bailing out of every sales meeting after getting rejected without even learning how to handle customer objections.
The fundamental message here is that with every sales meeting will come objections of all kinds. It’s important to be resilient with how you overcome rejections in sales. Pay attention to your clients’ reasonings and objections. Adjust your responses accordingly and treat every objection as a chance to ask more questions about their specific problems. A good sales tip is to know your product or service like the back of your hand.
Sales professionals must also learn to read their customers personality and adjust their sales presentation accordingly. One way to do this is to ask open-ended questions that reveal their specific pain points and problems. Pay close attention to the nature of their language (and body language), when they answer your open-ended questions. Adjust your approach accordingly to match their personality to improve your chances of closing the sale.
Both Richard and Tommy fail to speak the customers’ language in this specific scene. Richard relies too heavily on the technical aspects of the product or service and inevitably turns the customer off. Tommy, on the other hand, is too informal with his approach and unavoidably ends up ruining the sale.
How to Handle Customer Objections
Now let’s look at how Tommy Boy effectively handles customer objections. In a critical scene of the movie, Tommy closes his first sale with a customer by utilizing open-ended questions and asks, “Why would someone put a guarantee on the box”? This strategy moves the conversation forward and keeps the customer engaged and curious.
A key sales lesson from Tommy Boy is to take advantage of the belly-to-belly you have with customers. Tommy was able to effectively deliver a convincing argument as to why his product was superior. He was able to close this deal by handling the customers’ objections with relevant anecdotes and interesting examples. Tommy’s argument was predicated on the fact that a “guaranteed label” on a box does not always correlate with a quality product. Tommy learns how to handle customer objections and ultimately ends up closing his first sale on the road and goes on t save his father’s company.
While the world of business is fast paced and frantic there are times when the entire staff comes together for the purposes of making succinct plans for the future. These conferences, or sales meetings, are important to the employees as well as the employer. It is during these meetings that goals are set and techniques are refined. If you are responsible for setting up sales meetings in your company, then there are several things that you need to remember at all times.
The following information is meant to serve as a guide to help you lead a more productive and professional sales meeting.
Make An Agenda
Perhaps the most important thing to remember is that you need to have a specific agenda for the materials that will be covered in your meeting. Having a plan is the first step in making your business meeting more productive. If you fail to have a proper agenda, it will become obvious to the other employees that you have not devoted adequate time to your craft. This is the breeding ground for sloppiness and for apathy. Make a plan and stick with it.
Get Everyone Involved
Every sales meeting needs to embody the salespeople. This means your meeting needs to hold information that can be beneficial to the people who are actually doing the selling. This is a great time to inject new people and new ideas into the conversation. Encourage your people to share and bounce ideas off of each other. This meeting is about making them more productive. Allow them to learn.
This meeting is not about hearing you lecture. The number one mistake in many sales meetings is the dominance of one person. It is important that this meeting is a time of collaboration. Make sure that you are not the only one speaking. This is not the time to monopolize the conversation. On the flip side, it is important that you do not allow another individual to dominate the conversation as well. In order to foster a good environment, it is important that everyone have a chance to share. It is equally important that everyone feel his or her opinions are being listened to.
It is important that your meeting has measurable results. This does not mean you should take a poll of the people immediately following the meeting. What it does mean is that a sales meeting is meant to offer encouragement as well as fine details.Recognizingthe individual performances during meetings promotes improvements throughout the sales force. A properly run sales meeting can energize your team and set your week on the right path. A poorly operated sales meeting could undermine your leadership.
Make A Comfortable Environment
Perhaps the most obvious aspect of a sales meeting is that it should be fun. This is not the time for carnival rides or balloon animals but it is a time to make your employees comfortable and loose. Allow for creativity in both the atmosphere and the tone of your meetings.
The Sales Coaching Institute offers effective instruction when you want to learn more about how to run a sales meeting efficiently. Get more great tips by visiting SalesCoach.us today.