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Hitting Your Sales Goals – 3 Challenges to Overcome

Posted by Tony Cole on Wed, Sep 06, 2017

In the last 30 days, I’ve talked to more than a dozen company executives, sales people and sales managers.  I’ve asked them “What is the #1 constrictor to hitting your sales goals?”  The answer every time was: getting more qualified leads.  I know this is not a large sampling and I would be concerned about the validity of this finding if only 25% of them said that getting more qualified leads was the main problem. But that isn’t the case.  The consistency of answer in this survey indicates a trend to focus on.

There is further validation of the current finding:

During training discussions over the course of more than 20 years, I’ve asked sales executives, presidents and sales teams to complete the following statement:  I (we) would sell more, be more productive, more effective if only I (we) …  The #1 most common answer consistently over the years has been “If I had more / better prospects to call on.”

In order to address the problem of gettin more qualified leads, sales leaders and salespeople need to first understand these three challenges:

  1. Will to Sell
  2. Sales DNA
  3. Sales Skills

Let me use an example to explain.  We are currently working with a financial institution that is hiring a new private banker in an expanded market.  Using the pre-hire assessment from our partner Objective Management Group, we created a ‘tailored fit model’ based on the performance of the top and bottom current private bankers and then assessed the 5 candidates they were still considering.

Take a look at these findings:

Figure 1 – How well did the candidates match the clients’ work history criteria for success?  The client created a profile that indicated that the non-negotiable sale success criteria where: 1) must be competition resistant (successfully sold in a competitive environment), 2) Successfully sold value rather than price, 3) Sold to executives, 4) Has successfully hunted and sold new business (this addresses challenge #3 sales skills – specifically skills for hunting/ prospecting), 5) Is an entrepreneurial seller.  As you can see all the candidates being considered marginally met the client criteria for success with 3 of the 5 having an 80% match.

But when we look at the other findings, we find the 3 challenges most common to organizations that are trying to consistently hit / exceed their sales goals.

Figure #2 -When we look at Challenge #1 – ‘Will to Sell’ we find the following:

Only 1 candidate meets all the criteria for Will To Sell. The question becomes:  How important is the will to sell when attempting to overcome the challenges of finding qualified prospects to talk to? If 1/3 of your current team lacks the will to sell what is the likelihood  - despite all the ‘prospecting’ training you provide them – that they will actually execute?  Also note that one of the candidates with strong desire, commitment and outlook will still be prone to making excuses for not prospecting, asking for introductions and networking. (Desire for Sales Success)

Figure #3 – Sales DNA (Sales DNA Audio) findings for the 5 candidates looked like this:

This post won’t go into the definitions of all the criteria you see here but understand that green is good and red is not so good.  If you look to the right of the graph and look at the Total Sales DNA the scores in green and red told our client what they needed to know.  If everything else is equal in the equation then your people with strong sales DNA are more likely to do the activity of prospecting and will be more successful.

*Candidate #2 meets the criteria of the client, has a very strong will to sell and has the highest sales DNA score.  How many of the people on your sales team measure up to this ‘elite’ candidate?

The world of selling is certainly different today than it was just 5 years ago.  Your prospects in the market place have more ways to find more information about you, your products and services. They have more ways to compare you against your competition and all of this happens without you or your sales people even making contact.  (See ZMOT – Google Research – Zero Moment of Truth).

To meet the challenges of today, you need a sales team with the right stuff.

 Find Out More about our Fall Sales Workshops

Topics: Prospecting, sales goals, sales prospects, qualified leads, sales leads, generating leads

The 5 Why Questions Sales Prospects Ask

Posted by Mark Trinkle on Mon, Jul 25, 2016

5-why.jpg

A guest blog post by Mark Trinkle, Chief Sales Officer, Anthony Cole Training Group

Why…Why…Why…Why…Why??????

My apologies for sounding like a 3-year old wondering why they need to stop doing something, start doing something, or eat something green and not so tasty off their plate.

So, here’s the deal. Do you know who else on occasion has a serious case of the whys?  You guessed it…your prospect.  For the record, prospects are also really good at simulating the temper tantrums of a three-year old when they don’t get their way.

Specifically, according to The Bridge Group, Inc., there are 5 Why Questions that most prospects ask themselves during the sales process:

  1. Why should they listen? I mean, after all, they were not expecting your call.  They were busy doing something and probably have a million things on their to-do list so why should they take the time to even listen to you as you interrupt their day?
  2. Why should they care? Let’s assume for just a minute they decided to listen.  What is going to resonate with your message to the point that it gets your prospect to care?
  3. Why should they change? Who knows how long the prospect has been on the course they are on today?  Why do something different?  Maybe things are going ok.
  4. Why should they pick you? There are probably lots of competitive options, so what is going to cause them to select you?
  5. Why now? Is there an urgency to act now?  What is going to compel or motivate the prospect to do something now instead of later?  Remember that a lack of urgency has torpedoed its share of sales opportunities.

 

Like it or not, your prospect is asking themselves these five questions….perhaps consciously so they are full aware of it or maybe it is being asked at a deeper subconscious level.

Either way, you better know the answers.

I guarantee you that your prospect does.

Thanks for tuning in…now go sell like a champion today.

Topics: sales prospects, asking sales questions

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    About our Blog

    Founder and CLO Tony Cole has been working with financial firms for more than 25 years to help them close their sales opportunity gap.  He is a master at using science based data and finely honed coaching strategies to help build effective sales teams.  Don’t miss his weekly sales management blog insights.

     

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