Monthly Archives: August 2013

August 30th, 2013

Video Blog – Selling with Insights: How Specific Should Insights Be?

selling-with-insights-video-blog

Video Blog – Selling with Insights: How Specific Should Insights Be?

We are living in an age where we are overloaded with information. It is now no longer good enough for a salesperson to simply forward on a whitepaper or piece of data. Please join Dario Priolo, Chief Strategy Officer of Richardson, in this short video clip as he walks us through the process and importance of aligning specific insights to your customer’s challenges. This is a third in a series including: Selling With Insights: How can sales provide more value to clients? and Selling With Insights: What are the barriers to Selling With Insights?

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August 28th, 2013

How to Fix Common Problems with Sales Training Transfer

sales-training-transfer

How to Fix Common Problems with Sales Training Transfer

I find it interesting that so many in our profession (and our company leaders) want to talk about how to determine sales training ROI (or Return on Expectations), but don’t want to focus on how to get the learning from courses actually used in the workplace. To me, that’s like wanting to determine the effects of fire on wood and putting your wood in sunlight, hoping it bursts into flames so you can study it. It’s folly. Without transfer, you won’t impact business outcomes and you won’t deliver a return, however you measure it.

A Recent Reminder of Sales Training Transfer Obstacles

I attended the Dallas ASTD Southwest Learning Summit recently and was in the audience for Steve Lee’s presentation on incorporating gamification principles in scenario-based elearning. It was a strong presentation and Allen Interactions is doing a lot of great work, as are many of the leading elearning/content development companies.

A lot of things that Steve shared made sense and were impressive, but one thing really resonated with me, as an indication of our problems with sales training transfer.

Describing what one company learned as a result of their experience, he said (paraphrased):

“They [the learners] did okay in training, but thought they knew better on the job.”

In other words, the participants learned the content (knowledge) and could demonstrate judgment to select » Continue Reading.

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August 26th, 2013

Focus on Your Average and Bottom Performers to Improve Sales Performance

focus-on-sales-performance-improvement

Focus on Your Average and Bottom Performers to Improve Sales Performance

Yeah, I know. Based on the title, you’re already shaking your head, wondering if I’ve finally lost my marbles. Hang with me… I’m pretty sure you’ll see what I mean.

In an earlier post entitled “Which Top Producers Should You Study to Develop Sales Training Programs?”, I introduced a sales analytics approach that I’ve use for analyzing top producers and placing the sales organization into six major bands.

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August 23rd, 2013

Video Blog – Selling With Insights: What are the Barriers to Selling With Insights?

video-selling-with-insights-barriers

Selling With Insights: What are the Barriers to Selling With Insights?

In our last blog, How Can Sales Provide More Value to Clients, we discussed how sales provide more value to clients through insight selling. But what are the barriers to Selling With Insights? There are several barriers that sales reps encounter when trying to Sell With Insights to their clients, including finding the most relevant insight for the customer. In his video blog, What are the Barriers to Selling With Insights, Dario Priolo, Chief Strategy Officer, discusses what is required of sales and marketing teams to bring value to the buyer from Selling With Insights.

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August 20th, 2013

Video Blog – Selling With Insights: How Can Sales Provide More Value to Clients?

selling-with-insights

 Selling With Insights: How Can Sales Provide More Value to Clients?

In preparation for a conversation with the client, sales reps must be aware that the client already knows a lot. To differentiate the business, sales reps should bring new value added ideas to the discussion. In this video, Selling With Insights: How can sales provide more value to clients, Richardson’s Dario Priolo, Chief Strategy Officer, offers practical advice to sales about the process of providing value to highly informed clients.

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August 20th, 2013

The Trust Equation – Four Essential Factors for Building Trust with Sophisticated Buyers Part 2

trust-relaibility

The Trust Equation – Four Essential Factors for Building Trust  with Sophisticated Buyers Part 2

This is the second of a two-part guest post written by Andrea Howe, co-author of “The Trusted Advisor Field Book” and creator of The Get Real Project.

In Part 1 of Four Essential Factors for Building Trust with Sophisticated Buyers, I suggested that even though trust-based selling is far from formulaic, it helps to approach it with a formula in your back pocket: the trust equation.

So far we’ve covered two of the four variables of the trust equation: “S” (self-orientation) and “I” (intimacy). My advice in a nutshell: “Get off your ‘S’” and “Go soft.”

Part 2 reveals some unexpected aspects of “C” (credibility) and “R” (reliability).

Tell the Truth, Especially When It Makes You Look Bad

People don’t want to buy from people who know everything; people want to buy from people who know enough to meet their needs and who have a track record of dealing with others directly and honestly. In other words, they need to be confident in both the message and the messenger. That’s because credibility, as the trust equation defines it, is as much about truthfulness as it is about knowledge and experience.

Building others’ confidence in you as the messenger is harder than it sounds » Continue Reading.

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August 16th, 2013

Four Essential Factors for Building Trust with Sophisticated Buyers, Part 1 of 2

trusted-advisor-2

Four Essential Factors for Building Trust  with Sophisticated Buyers, Part 1 of 2

This is the first of a two-part guest post written by Andrea Howe, co-author of “The Trusted Advisor Field Book” and creator of The Get Real Project.

Here’s something I’ve learned about sales professionals in the years I’ve been leading training programs: they’re avid learners in hot pursuit of excellence. And for the best of the best, “excellence” is determined not by numbers, but by the difference they make. Use this four-part checklist to gain insight into ways to raise your game.

Do the Math

In this day and age, there are very, very few who dispute the importance of building trust in the sales process.

While trust-based selling is far from formulaic, it helps to approach it with a formula in your back pocket. That’s where the trust equation comes in.

David Maister, Charlie Green, and Rob Galford first wrote about the trust equation in The Trusted Advisor in 2000. Eleven years later, Charlie and I reprised it in The Trusted Advisor Fieldbook. It’s proven to be a perennial favorite.

One reason for the trust equation’s popularity is that it has many uses. As a conceptual framework, it demystifies what it really takes to be trustworthy. It can also be used in a more specific way to “score” a particular person (you) or a particular relationship (yours with a client). » Continue Reading.

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August 14th, 2013

Making Sales Training Stick: Building a Continuous Learning Environment

Continuous Learning Environment

Making Sales Training Stick: Building a Continuous Learning Environment

You know the feeling. You’re driving in your car, trying to get where you’re going, but are frustratingly slowed by every traffic light on the road. Oh how you’d rather be on a smooth highway, free of traffic lights (and traffic) and motoring on toward your destination unimpeded. Sound familiar?

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