Posts Tagged ‘sales mindset’

Suffering from the Retreat Sales Mentality Are We?

Sometimes when the going gets tough instead of the tough get going what happens is the retreat sales mentality sets in.  This way of thinking attacks the self-confidence, self starting ability and overall personal accountability on two fronts:

sales-mentality

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  • Conscious
  • Subconscious

A pending sales lead suddenly changes course and leaves you wondering why should I continue?  Retreating and seeking another sales lead appears to be a better route.

If you disagree, then how do you explain sales research that 44% of salespeople give up (retreat) after one followup? (Source: Scripted)

Possibly another reason for the retreat mentality is the salesperson has different expectations than the sales lead.  These expectations may be a quick sale to an easy sale (less decision makers).  However reality in the B2B marketplace runs contradictory to those self-imposed expectations.

  • 63% of people requesting information on your company today will not purchase for at least three months – and 20% will take more than 12 months to buy.   (Source: Marketing Donut)
  • 50% of leads are qualified but not yet ready to buy.   (Source: Gleanster Research)
  • Firms with 100-500 employees, an average of 7 people are involved in most buying decision.   (Source: Gartner Group)

Another example of retreat sales mentality surfaces during the selling phase of the sales process.  Far too many salespeople are quick to reduce price to get a sale instead of being able to demonstrate the value of their solution respective to the desired end results for the potential ideal customer.

In sales having a strong and positive mental attitude is a prerequisite for success. Giving up when the first limitation arises only reinforces this sales mentality to retreat instead of to persevere.

I believe the words we use and think are critical to overall sales success as well as success in life.  Maybe the next time you become discouraged, ask yourself are you retreating?  What does it mean to retreat?  Is there another way to win this sale for you as well as for your customer?

Curious if your talents of self confidence, self starting ability and personal accountability are strong?

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Aim Small Miss Small Sales Mindset

With all the focus on social selling, there appears to be a different sales mindset emerging and not a necessarily good one.  I was reminded of this when reading a LinkedIn article by Jeb Blount entitled “Social Selling Is Not a Panacea.”

sales-mindset

Credit www.pixabay.com

One of the problems with this concept of social selling is it creates a lack of clarity and focus.  The salesperson is aiming at a much bigger target, the various social media sites, and thus misses big.

As Jeb shared in his $10 bet  with a new hire, he was far more successful just by dialing and actually converted two of the sales calls. In comparison the new hire converted no one.

When a salesperson has an aim small miss small sales mindset, he or she has enhanced his or her clarity to the point of it being crystal clear.  Missing the target is no longer supported with a hope and a pray. “I hope I make a sale.”

BAR – Beliefs Drive Actions Generating Results

To have such a sales attitude because attitudes are indeed habits of thought (Zig Ziglar) requires a strategic plan from which the market to the ideal customer have been clearly identified. These beliefs drive the actions (behaviors) generating the results (increase sales).

ACE – Assess – Clarify – Execute

Such a sales mindset begins with assessing not only the business, the industry, but the salesperson as well. From that collected data, there is the opportunity to clarify the necessary objectives and strategies. Next step is executing those strategies.

Feel -Know – Do

To complete this aim small miss small mindset, the salesperson must connect to the buyer.  What does he or she want the buyer to feel?  Obviously to create this environment, the seller must know what the buyer is feeling. Here the focus is on the buyer and not on the seller.

Then what does he or she want the buyer to know? Possibly because the buyer has conducted some research, the buyer may already know something about the seller.  Yet here is the real opportunity to explore the wants and needs of the buyer.

Finally what does the seller want the buyer to do?  In simple sales talk, this is a call to action.  This action could be a simple of having a coffee visit to scheduling a more formal meeting.  Adding the person with permission to an email list such as a newsletter is another call to action.

I believe in what Zig Ziglar said years ago “Sales is the transference of feelings.”  When that transfer is successful and when the seller has demonstrated his or her ability to connect to the value drivers of the buyer, then there is far greater likelihood to increase sales.  Of course if you are looking for the quick fix or what Jeb calls “panacea,” you may be sorely disappointed.

Want to talk with Leanne Hoagland-Smith about how to improve your sales mindset?  CLICK HERE to schedule a conversation.

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If I Only Had a Sales Brain

Remember the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz and his fervent wish of “If I only had a brain?” Sometimes I hear this somewhat similar desire with salespeople who appear to yearn for a sales brain.

sales-brain

Would such a brain actually increase sales?

The ending lyrics to the Scarecrow’s desire may provide some insight:

I would not be just a muffin’,
My head all full of stuffin’,
My heart all full of pain;
And perhaps I’d deserve you and be
Even worthy even you
If I only had a brain.

The desire for a brain reflected the Scarecrow’s own self imposed limitations and his own internal negative feelings of self-worth.  He didn’t feel worthy of deserving anyone’s attention because of his own limiting beliefs.

In actuality, Scarecrow confused having a physical brain with having a mind.  He needed reinforcement that he had a mind as evidenced by receiving the degree from the Wizard.

How we think about ourselves is the foundation for success in any endeavor and especially I believe in sales. Having a sales mind or better yet a sales mindset now that is somewhat different than having a sales brain.

Possibly this is why understanding how we make decisions within our sales conversations to our marketing and sales activities is essential. By applying the work of Dr. Hartman through the science of Axiology, we can actually improve our decision making process by leveraging our various talents.

Did you know you had 78 talents?

Download this PDF file (78-core-talents-self-eval-dl) to self assess yourself.

Additionally the work around the neurosciences including neuro linguistic programming (NLP) to emotional intelligence all work together to support a strong as well as emotionally aware sales mindset.  Today some forward thinking sales training actually incorporates NLP and emotional intelligence into their learning objectives.

Of course we as human beings are not one dimensional.  This is why it is important to also understand why we do what we do and how we do what we do.  Psychometric assessments such as the Values Index and DISC Index provide insight to those other two dimensions of “why” and “how.”

Now that you may be having the Scarecrow’s “If I only had a brain,” tune running through your head, you may wish to further reflect what it means to have a sales brain and as well as sales mindset. Reflection or better yet guided reflection can support you in reaching your goal to increase sales.

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The US vs THEM SMB Sales Mindset

For mid-size to small businesses (SMB), there is a very real US (those not in sales) vs THEM (the salespeople) sales mindset.  Since in many instances, the salespeople are the greater salary earners, there is a resentment by some of the non-sales employees.

sales-mindset

Credit www.gratisography.com

This resentment happens because executive leadership allows it. Instead of creating a collaborative workplace culture where everyone shares the same vision and values (business ethics), executive leadership fails to actually take the necessary actions to ensure everyone is united.  Their inactivity creates a void that is filled with distrust and envy.

Having word in a SMB, I experienced this US vs THEM sales mindset. Rush or emergency sales orders would come in near closing and the warehouse manager would decide these sales orders could wait until morning or the salesperson of record could make the delivery.  He could care less if the salesperson was two (2) hours away.  What happened in many instances is I would take the sales order to the customer on my way home.

Then there was the watercooler gossip about this salesperson earning so much or that salesperson earning so much.  Of course all this watercooler gossip was speculation, but that still did not stop the gossip. Even the inside salespeople would sometimes engage in this gossip because they had salary resentment.

Those who resented and gossiped did not realize or understand our salespeople were 100% commissioned.  The salespeople were responsible for all their own marketing costs including entertainment to donations for golf outings.

Now working as a small business coach, I continue to observe the US vs THEM sales mindset within the larger context of workplace culture.  What is so unfortunate is the US do not understand how the THEM as well as the SMB makes and keeps money.

Workplace culture is very much like a picture puzzle. Each piece is shaped by the beliefs, emotions and experiences of everyone present as well as those no longer present.  The US vs THEM sales mindset can be one or more than one pieces of the overall workplace culture puzzle.

If you are a SMB owner or sales manager, it is your leadership responsibility to eliminate the US vs THEM sales mindset.  By taking this proactive action, you will not only make the overall workplace culture better, you will increase sales as well as profitability.

Take this affordable workplace culture assessment to determine where there are gaps draining your productivity and profitability.

* * * * *

Leanne Hoagland-Smith is THE People and Process Problem Solver. She supports forward thinking leaders in bridging the gaps between the two problems restricting strategic business growth – people and processes. Leanne can be reached at 219.508.2859 central time USA.  Follow her on Twitter or check out her profile on LinkedIn.

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