Sales Management can be one of the toughest jobs due to the high expectations and multiple hats you have to wear. You have a lot of responsibility but the end game is dependent on your sales team. At any point in time, you might have to play the role of manager, coach, business analyst, therapist, counselor, and more. If you’re a sales manager, there are some additional challenges we run into that can hamper your team’s success.
“In the first two quarters of my involvement with you and your program, the information has generated $200,000 for me.”
—Dave A., Sales Training Executive
Sales and Business Development Professionals are vital to the success of any organization. Without sales, no one has a job! Ironically, most organizations fall way short of arming their sales and business development teams with the most effective and up-to-date training and development. If needed, we have a highly effective sales process we can provide you, or we can help you tweak your existing process. However, we’re not talking about just a sales process and marketing materials. There’s much more needed in order for sales and business development professionals to create lucrative incomes and blow sales goals out of the water. You need to develop your skills far beyond just a sales process. For example, our Mental Programming and Mental Toughness training will do more to increase sales than any other sales training. Emotional Intelligence development has also proven beyond a shadow of doubt to dramatically increase sales results. These programs are adjuncts to, not replacements of, your sales process.
We have the tools to maximize the true potential of sales and business development professionals and their teams as a whole. While our sales training and coaching offers many facets, the Mental Toughness portion has proven to be especially effective when working with corporate sales teams. When combined with Mental Programming and/or Emotional Intelligence, the effect is maximum performance and results!
Mental Toughness is Psychological Performance Training. The below video includes comments from some of our corporate clients who have received mental toughness training only.
Mental Toughness Minutes Videos
- Uncovering Emotional Motivation
- Overcoming Approval Addiction
- Prospecting Larger Customers
- The Psychology of Proactive vs. Reactive Selling
- Breaking Through The Salesperson Comfort Zone
- Why Salespeople Succeed or Fail
- Determining a Salesperson’s Level of Thinking
- Getting Salespeople to Take Responsibility
- The Psychology of Gaining Trust with Prospects
- How to Build Bold and Confident Salespeople
- Psychological Training for Rejection
- The 5 Levels of Mental Toughness
Below are a few areas we’ve discovered to be red flags with some sales managers. These are facts so don’t kill the messenger.
- Sales Process Not Being Followed: If you’re frustrated by this one, then the first step is to answer the following question: “Is it lack of knowledge or ability, or is it lack of desire?” In other words, do you have team members who can’t do it or just don’t want to do it? If they’re lacking in ability, this is much more easily fixed than their lack of desire. Their Mental Programming could be the number one barrier holding them back. This can be fixed. They could be lacking Mental Toughness skills and/or their Emotional Intelligence scores could be low. Whatever the reason, we can help by teaching and coaching learnable skills that will kick them into high gear. They will thank you for the life and career changing impact they will experience.
- Inefficient Coaching: Most managers are weak in effectively coaching their team. Over 70% of organizations have reported that their sales training tools and systems are somewhat or only slightly connected. And almost 25% report their systems are not at all connected. At Think. Focus. Act., we want what’s best for you. We can handle all the training or coaching or hand part or all over to you. Our Train-The-Trainer programs could be the perfect solution so that you can assume ownership in delivering our maximum performance coaching programs.
- Not Fully Implementing and Using Sales Analytics: Sales professionals are missing actionable insights to drive better results. About 80% of organizations do not fully use the data to create predictive models that improve selling results.
- Slow Ramp-Up Time For New Sales Professionals: On average it takes 7-9 months for new sales professionals to be fully productive. What would it mean to cut your ramp up time in half or more? What would be the revenue impact on your company to speed up the ramp up time? Have you taken a serious look at what’s at the root of slow ramp up times? Do you lose money on your sales professionals for several months after they’re hired? They need strategic guidance and plans, not a bunch of information overload. A complete sales execution strategy and personal development training and coaching are the keys for everyone to sell more and faster. Plus you’ll set the stage for happier team members and lower turnover.
What bothers you the most about your sales team? Is it one of the red flags above? What’s your gut instinct tell you are your biggest frustrations or challenges? Don’t be delusional. Deal in fact and objective reality if you want to make progress. We’re here to help you take yourself and team to the top of the mountain!
Objective Reality vs. Delusional Thinking
Approximately 85% of the population are delusional thinkers much of the time. We’ve found this to be very true for sales and business development professionals. For example, we’ll ask them to answer the following question: “On a scale of 1-7 (7 being the highest), how would you rate yourself as a World-Class Sales Professional?” We’ve asked this question to tens of thousands of sales professionals around the world, and the most common response is “7.” Oftentimes, every member of the sales team responds with7. Regardless of their answer, we ask them this follow-up question: “Compared to what?” If they answered 6 or 7, what are they basing their response on? Let’s say their earning $125,000-150,000 per year. Does that make them a 7? Don’t you think the best of the best in the world are earning $125,000-150,000 or more every month as compared to an entire year?
“I want to let you know about some of my personal progress since I started your program one year ago.
- I set a sales goal for my sales team…and reached it for the first time in our business history;
- exceeded $900,000 in one month (an all time sales volume goal);
- improved role as a husband, father, son & brother;
- prepared for low winter sales using marketing and won sales contest of 11 branches;
- broke numerous monthly sales records;
- grew business 18.5% to a record $7.7 million in sales for the year;
- increased average job size, closing ratio and thus yield per opportunity;
- hired and trained one new rep for fastest ramp-up in history;
- increased referrals, which increased our “warm leads”;
- exercised more in the last 12 months than in the previous 5 years;
- working on living life with “no regrets”.
Was this (your program) a worthwhile investment? Absolutely. I want to thank my company owners for their investment in me and I thank you Mark for your efforts to improve my life. Your process has allowed me to examine my priorities and gaps in my life and my business.”
—Jim K., Sales Manager
Sales Managers vs. Sales Professionals Survey Results
Following are some additional findings from a survey conducted by Brainshark regarding the sales professional’s Preparation, Presentation, and Follow Up. These results provide further proof that most sales professionals are delusional and refuse to adequately use critical thinking and objective reality on these issues.
77% of salespeople graded themselves a “B” or higher while only 58% of their sales managers graded them “B” or higher. 16% of the salespeople said they deserved an “A” vs. only 7% “A” from their managers. And 42% of the managers graded their sales members with a “C” or below.
Only 14% of the salespeople thought their presentation skills deserved a “C” or below whereas their managers gave 43% of them a “C” or lower. 22% of the salespeople gave themselves an “A” vs. only 8% of their managers.
22% (salespeople) vs. 10% (sales managers) gave an “A” for the post-meeting follow-up. 73% of the salespeople gave themselves a “B” or higher while only 55% of their managers gave them a “B” or higher.
These findings provide compelling evidence of major disconnects between management and team members. Think. Focus. Act. addresses these and many other issues head on with your sales team. Developing critical thinking skills and operating with objective reality are some of the many areas we train them.
“The sessions are fantastic, extremely powerful, and very beneficial! With the concepts I’m learning, and the unique approach you use, I know I will dramatically grow my business and achieve significantly higher income levels. Being able to live a balanced and happier life on top of the financial success is simply awesome! Your program is one of a kind. It’s so impressive how you improve both the business or career and the individual. Your program stands out above any I have seen, and I would highly recommend that any business owner, manager, self-employed professional or anyone in a leadership position sign up for your program. The value I am receiving for my business and life is immeasurable. Everyone will benefit from your services and should start this process as soon as they can.”
—Julie K., District Sales Manager
Individual Sales and Business Development Professionals
The rest of this page speaks more directly to the individual sales and business development professionals.
Selling is one of the fiercest and most demanding careers. Regardless of the support and training you receive from your company, step one is for you to take complete responsibility for the results you want to achieve. Your sales results depend mostly on your own personal development. Do you ever complain about:
- Not having enough time to prepare for sales calls or follow up correctly
- Being left out of the sales and marketing materials content development process
- Having to spend your time creating or modifying sales materials
- Dealing with out-of-date materials
- Feeling like you operate in a silo having little effective collaboration with others in your company for creating and delivering the right sales message
- Not getting enough skills training to achieve better results
Some Top Challenges
Of the many challenges faced by sales professionals, there are several we’ve found to be especially common.
- Focus: inability to stay focused on the most important thing. The ability to focus is a muscle that can be developed. We live in a world full of distractions. To increase your sales results, it’s imperative that you develop this skill. Stay focused on the most important prospects, clients, opportunities, and activities. Don’t get caught up in the “urgent”.
- Priority/Activity Management: Allocating your time to high value, high payoff activities. Do you ever feel that you run out of time? To be blunt, no one runs out of time until they’re dead. We have 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 52 weeks in a year. We all have the same amount of time that we can only spend. We can’t save it, buy more of it, or trade it…we can only spend it. Your success will be determined based on your ability to focus on the right activities.
- Disconnection Between Buyer and Seller On All Specific Buyer Needs: Effective Selling is based on a conversation. While most sales professionals think they understand the Buyer’s needs, most fall way short on what the deeper needs are. Our sales process goes well beneath the surface on just a few buyer needs. Done right, your prospects will buy from you almost every time!
- Lack of Deep Human Connection Between Buyer and Seller: When prospects realize you care about them as human beings and not just for their business, you become a magnet for others to do business with you. We train on implementing Appreciation Marketing Strategies and raising your “Likeability Factor”, both of which dramatically increase your human connection. The results are increased sales and more referrals!
- Struggle Finding Qualified Leads: Increased competition makes this even worse. However, if you struggle finding qualifies leads, then something is missing in your approach. There are leads everywhere. You need systems in place that ensure your pipeline is always full. There are many systems. For example, we train our clients to create and implement an effective Referral System. Like other business systems, finding qualified leads comes down to written, step-by-step processes and procedures that bring prospects and sales opportunities to you on an ongoing basis.
- Disappearing Customer Loyalty: In the fast-paced times we all live in, information at our fingertips through the internet, and the lack of appreciation the majority of customers feel, most customers have no real sense of loyalty and don’t think twice about taking their business elsewhere. As discussed above, this problem can be reversed by implementing specific systems that communicate clearly your interest, care, and concern for your customers. In fact, there’s more opportunity than ever to stand out with your customers. They’re used to their service providers not truly caring about them. And remember that when you increase your customer loyalty, your referrals and ability to attract more qualified leads goes up.
Would you like to take the guesswork out of your sales results? This is quite simpler than you might think. Part of your sales process should include calculating and monitoring metrics. We can show you how to take the guesswork out and to change your habits, actions, and behaviors so that you can reach any sales volume level you choose.
Your sales approach must evolve past the old school models. Today’s marketplace is different than any other time in history. Your competition comes from every corner of the globe. Buyers are more educated than ever and most have spent hours researching products and getting a general idea of the solutions available before they approach a sales professional. To succeed and excel, you must be different and dedicated to a new way of doing things.
The Think. Focus. Act. strategies and techniques will prove vital for you to really explode your career. Never has personal development been more important and essential for sales and business development professionals.
CLICK HERE and send a LinkedIn connection request to connect with Mark Eldridge, Founder and CEO of Think. Focus. Act.
For profitable expansion of your business and career, contact Think. Focus. Act. at 402-881-8873.
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