Category Archives: Sales Performance

July 14th, 2016

The Neuroscience of Sales: Unseating an Incumbent

neuroscience of sales: incumbency bias

Competing against an incumbent provider is one of the more challenging sales situations that we encounter.  The existing account holder likely has a stronger relationship with the client, first-hand knowledge of the client’s business, and enjoys the benefit of being a known entity.  Remarkably, even with mediocre performance, an incumbent can be difficult to unseat, and a lot of the reason why is attributed to psychology.  There are a few neuroscience concepts that give us some insights as to why customers hold on so tightly and how a challenger might loosen the grip.

Loss Aversion

Loss aversion is the simple idea that the fear of losing something is much stronger than the joy of gaining something — in fact, it is about twice as strong, according to research.  In a competitive sales environment, that means that the value proposition of a challenger needs to be significantly stronger than that of the incumbent if the challenger hopes to win the business.  Loss aversion is how even relatively weak providers maintain accounts.  So why is our fear of loss so strong?

It is human nature to overvalue what we already own; this is called the endowment effect.  It is evident when people are reluctant to part with something they own for its cash equivalent, or if the amount that people are willing to pay for something is lower than what people are willing to accept when selling it (Kahneman, Knetsch, & Thaler, » Continue Reading.

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July 12th, 2016

The Neuroscience of Sales: Resolving the Irrational Objection

the neuroscience of sales & overcoming irrational objections

In sales, we hear them all the time — objections from our customers that just don’t make a lot of rational sense… not to us, anyway. We don’t say it out loud, but we’re thinking, “What? Where did that objection come from?”

The irrational objection is one of the tougher challenges in Sales because we know that there is something deeper that the customer is not comfortable sharing. Also, the customer may not be fully aware of some of his/her deeper drivers. Since the sale will not progress until we resolve the objection, we need to discover what is causing the objection — but how?

Our brains — ergo, our customers’ brains — are wired with biases that cause errors in judgment. Because we may not be aware of these cognitive biases, even skilled questioning may not reveal them. During the sales dialogue, we need to identify and understand biases and get good at using “debiasing” techniques to move the conversation forward.

The Status Quo Bias

The status quo bias is at the root of many irrational objections. It’s really simple to understand — our brains don’t like change. Essentially, we have a preference for things to remain the same until the status quo becomes too uncomfortable to accept. This bias is a powerful and normal reaction for us in response to anything new and » Continue Reading.

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July 20th, 2015

Richardson Named to Selling Power’s 2015 Top Sales Training Companies List

top sales training companies

For the Third Consecutive Year, Richardson has been Named to Selling Power’s 2015 Top Sales Training Companies List

Philadelphia, PA—July 20, 2015 — Richardson, a leading global sales training and effectiveness company, announced that it has been included on Selling Power’s 2015 list of the Top Sales Training Companies for the third consecutive year. The Selling Power Top 20 Sales Training Companies list identifies leading companies that excel in helping sales leaders improve the performance of their sales teams. Selling Power editors say that the firms included on the 2015 Top Sales Training Companies list have “demonstrated an excellent awareness of the skills and tools required to succeed and remain competitive in today’s selling environment.”

According to Selling Power magazine publisher and founder Gerhard Gschwandtner, sales training is a vital component of a high-performance sales organization. “Great salespeople require the right toolset, the right skillset, and the right mindset to win,” he said. “A great, consultative sales training initiative can address all three areas. Sales leaders should use this list of the Top 20 Sales Training Companies to find the solution that best suits their needs.”

“We are very thankful and honored to be recognized once again as one of the top sales training companies in the industry,” says Jim Brodo, SVP of Marketing at Richardson. “Richardson’s success is a direct outcome of working with some of today’s most innovative clients and by the excellence and » Continue Reading.

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November 20th, 2013

Connecting Dots in the Sales Performance Ecosystem

Sales-Performance-Ecosystem

Connecting Dots in the Sales Performance Ecosystem

We’ve written a few times about the Sales Performance Ecosystem.  It can be a daunting concept.  While many people can relate to what’s included, either the sections or individual elements, how to actually intertwine and align the elements (or “connect the dots”) is often less clear.

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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 2nd, 2013

Creating a Culture of Accountability for Sellers and Enablers… and Why it Matters

Culture of Accountability

Creating a Culture of Accountability for Sellers and Enablers… and Why it Matters

Today’s blog post appears courtesy of Daniel West, Executive Vice President, Strategy & Corporate Development at SAVO Group

Look closely at any enterprise level sales organization today and you’ll likely find a team struggling with a common set of issues:

“There’s too much information and I can’t find the stuff I need when I need it.” “My sales team can’t adapt quickly enough to new messaging and go-to-market initiatives.” “It takes too long for our new sales hires to get up to speed and be productive.” “Our sales process isn’t delivering an accurate forecast or predictable revenue.”

Do any of these challenges sound familiar to you?  If so, don’t worry.  You’re not alone…whether you’re a sales rep in the trenches, a sales leader managing a territory, or a CEO struggling to get the value you expected out of your sales investments, these are all very common roadblocks.

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October 26th, 2012

Survey: Top Sales Improvement Priorities

Sales Performance

Top Sales Improvement Priorities

Let your voice be heard!

Richardson is conducting a short survey of sales professionals to help companies determine where they should invest in 2013 to improve sales performance. We would appreciate if you could take about 5 minutes to answer a few short questions. The information will be very useful for helping sales leaders align and prioritize initiatives. Your response will be kept strictly confidential.

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October 12th, 2012

Sales Performance Optimization (SPO) Survey

Sales Performance Optimization

Sales Performance Optimization (SPO) Survey

CSO Insights is conducting their 19th Sales Performance Optimization (SPO) survey, the past results of which have been featured in Business Week, Harvard Business Review, Fortune, etc.

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