6 Pillars to Sales Success
Throughout the years I've read over 100 developmental books and spent hours and hours pouring over material to refine my sales craft and to gain insight to serve others. In addition, I serve a team of sales recruiters here at SecureVision and we interview 1,000's of the best sales professionals a year. We've picked up a few insights along the way and we used these fundamentals to manifest 785% year-over-year growth for 2017.
Like any complex craft, consultative sales can not be boiled down to 1 key - which seems to be a popular approach these days to everything. If there was a single point, it would be, you are what you think - very important, although we can't stop here - what should we think about, what are our priorities? How should we think about our career, our craft, to get the most out of life?
There are fundamental concepts that Top Producers are aware of listed below. I did not come up with these principles, I've listened to the best sales people in the world and obsessively study their habits as to what makes them great. To articulate these points most effectively I closely referenced thought leaders that seem to be most inline with sales success, who I consider as my mentors.
The following points can be found in numerous books and seminars by Tony Robbins, Norman Vincent Peale, Napoleon Hill, Wayne Dyer, Thoreau, Ken Blanchard, Keith J. Cunningham, Marcus Sheridan, and many other business and thought-awareness leaders.
1. Never put your career or success into anyone else hands, if you need more pipeline or anything else, the best person to go get it is you. In tandem to being a team player, look at your position as your own business - write a business plan - outline the entire life cycle to fully understand the required activity and pipeline to fulfill your potential. Look at your business lifecycle as if you were a mechanic working on a car. If a car part is broken what does a mechanic do? A mechanic does not think he is broken - he simple fixes the part so the car runs smoothly. Be objective, slightly detached as if watching yourself work from the other side of the room (be your own manager), shine light on every part of the process, so there is no mystery left to success.
2. Focus on resourcefulness not resources - when we are determined enough, creative enough, energetic enough, we can always find a solution and get any required resources. There is always a way to spend money and time on other resources claiming to provide a short cut to success, avoid this trap. There are a lot of great tools out there but they are not a cure-all. Nothing can replace the resourceful individual.
3. Don't settle on your priorities in life. Don't sell yourself short. Expect the best, and get it. Completing your work has nothing to do with the time spent - that's an antiquated approach. The job is done when it's completed. Hold yourself accountable. We don't always get what we want, but we do get what we tolerate. Being a sell out = selling yourself short.
4. Measure, refine activity, and re-measure - this is a must if you want to consistently exceed your quotas and more importantly fulfill your potential. If you have not read Keith J. Cunningham's book, The Ultimate Blueprint for an Insanely Successful Business, buy it today. One of my favorite quotes from Keith;
"If you can't read the scoreboard, you don't know the score". - Keith J. Cunningham
Measuring your results, followed by taking that data and turning it into meaningful insights so that you can change your activity and achieve better results is fundamental to consistent success in sales.
If you notice that there is a lot of volatility in your performance, ask yourself, " Do I understand why?". If you don't know, you need to find out what measurement are used in your industry as a base line and what those data points mean in relation to potential areas of improvement.
Ignorance is not bliss - in sales, ignorance leads to underperformance and frustration.
This process is simply the fastest way to exceed your quota and most importantly fulfill your potential.
5. Be the go-to problem solver for your clients. You may not know everything about your industry or your clients challenges, pain points, and opportunities when you first start out - although you need to learn this as fast as possible. What is most important is that you become obsessed with solving your clients problems - regardless of if you will get paid to do it, that is irrelevant. Providing the service that directly correlates to how your business get's paid is only one way of potentially thousands of ways you can add value to your clients.
For instance, if you sell a platform solution to marketing exec's, it would be vital to uncover every pain point and challenge they face while growing their business. Even if some of them are unrelated to your product - find solutions and advise them on best practices and their options to all of their greatest challenges.
By positioning yourself as an expert and a problem solver you build customer trust. And ultimately when the time comes to purchase your product or service the choice becomes easy for your client.
If you have not read, They Ask, You Answer, by Marcus Sheridan - buy it today. It covers this topic in depth and I consider it a must read for sales and marketing professionals.
6. Experienced advisors provide an objective baseline for clients. As an advisor there is only one true objective - to advise your client how to be as successful as possible as soon as possible. Always tell your clients the full truth even if you know it's not what they want to here. Don't be a Yes Man or Yes Woman. Clients can't trust a Yes Man.
Many times, junior reps and advisors have a hard time with this at the beginning of their career. They fear that if they tell their clients what they need to here, that the client will dump them for a Yes Man - do not fear this, it won't happen. You need to trust that your clients can differentiate between advice that serves the advisors self-interest or the client's best-interest.
Here are 7 additional helpful short pointers to keep in mind. We constantly remind ourselves of these points at SecureVision (via Tony Robbins, others, and myself).
The recipe = Massive Action backed by Massive Faith NEVER fails
Knowledge is potential power, consistent execution of high standards is the key
Where focus goes, energy flows
High Communication Builds High Trust
Stop Selling, Start Helping
Consistent success is not luck. It is a series of habits. Our job is to uncover and implement these habits.
Leverage other peoples experience for your development- but check the source.
Rock and Roll!
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Article written by James Mackey, CEO SecureVision
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