Strategies to be top sales person
One of the best sales people I know works a 3 day week and buys a new Ferrari annually. Once I asked him the secret to his success and he was surprisingly open about it. Qualify, qualify, qualify was his response. Of course, if it was that simple we would all be high flyers so there had to be more than this to account for his consistent success.
And there was. Qualification is the key to everything you do, and I don’t just mean working out the percentage success rate of a particular opportunity.
I mean everything you do - when you are about to do something that might take up an hour or more of your working day, ask yourself, ‘will this contribute to my revenue target?’ If the answer is no, then don’t do it. You could argue this philosophy is relevant to anyone performing a complex job. Distraction is the number one time waster.
Is a successful sales person driven by money?
At one level this is certainly the case but the money comes from success and getting the job done better than the competition drives that success. Rather than seeing money as the primary goal, look instead at how the person achieves their winning streak. Ownership of problems and building trust with the prospect is the way to win against the competition. Being more attentive, competent, and pre-empting customer needs (understanding the business) are all ways to drive this trust.
Sales Handbook 101
Something else a good sales person does, and it’s in the sales handbook 101, is not to depend upon single contacts because the contact’s focus and agenda can quickly and easily change over time. Your contact is not there to help you win; they work for their career and personal agenda. If your lead time is greater than 1 month then look to other enablers in the account, work your way up and down the ladder of responsibility and develop buy-in at each level. This is called developing the Pain Chain in Solution Selling parlance. Remember, the reason to buy at one level of the business is usually completely different at another.
C Level Contacts
Top sales executives are able to address the leadership level of their customer’s management. It is not uncommon for a sales person to maintain strong links at the middle or lower level of their customers’ businesses, remaining invisible to senior management. Even if they are playing a significant role in the success of their customer, they will eventually lose their accounts if they are not able to address this problem. Senior management dictate the strategic direction of their business - if you become part of their strategy, you will remain with them for the long run, keeping the competition at bay for much longer.
Close the Deal
The most important element of success is the close. It doesn’t matter if you have the complete buy-in of your prospect, if you fail to ask for the business you may as well not be there at all. Everything you do in sales is leading to one single point, so do not hesitate to ASK FOR THE BUSINESS.
If you have covered all the bases and asked all the right questions, there is no reason why their answer won’t be YES.