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August 5, 2013 12:00 AM
Did you know that the majority of buyers believe they are at least 60 percent done with their buying process before they seek out a salesperson? At least, that’s according to a slew of recent research from top-tier industry analysts. But beware — if you buy into these results, you could be misled regarding the messaging and training support that marketing and others need to provide salespeople.
August 1, 2013 12:00 AM
Authors and leadership consultants Jack Zenger and Joseph Folkman (zfco.com) gathered data from nearly 50,000 leaders and discovered that the ability to inspire creates the highest levels of employee engagement and commitment.
July 30, 2013 12:00 AM
What did you learn today? We’re asked that question constantly when we’re kids, but for whatever reason it’s not posed as much in adulthood. Consultant Kevin Eikenberry says regardless of your title or standing in your organization, you should continue to ask yourself the question — and hopefully have a strong answer. He offers these tips for fostering ongoing learning and professional development:
July 29, 2013 12:00 AM
When ESR seeks to understand why our clients’ sales organizations aren’t performing to expectations, we see the same inhibitors again and again: •  Unqualified people in sales and sales management positions •  No demand creation and/or generation process •  An absence of tools, value messages, competitive information and playbooks
July 26, 2013 12:00 AM
Three out of four companies formally recognize employees, but too many fail to tap into the focus that employees put on their jobs. Instead, they reward people for tenure or arbitrary achievements (employee of the month), or their recognition efforts are limited to particular groups like sales.
July 22, 2013 12:00 AM
If you’re engaged in the sales process, then you’d better be using effective negotiation strategies for every qualified lead – from discovery until the final agreement. If you wait until it’s time to close the deal, you may fall way short of your goals and your chances of building a long-term client relationship will quickly fade away.
July 19, 2013 12:00 AM
Asking for feedback from your team members can be one of the fastest ways to help you improve and set your team up for success. Meet with your salespeople individually and explain that your purpose is to learn how you can help them sell better. Then ask three questions:
July 14, 2013 10:21 PM
Our increasingly wired world requires collaboration across business teams all over the globe. To foster an engaging team atmosphere, companies are seeking better employee interaction solutions while reducing costs. A 2012 survey on maximizing employee collaborating with video found that four out of five corporate communicators feel it is difficult to communicate when out of the office, and say adoption of technologies that enable a distributed and mobile workforce would increase efficiency.
July 12, 2013 12:00 AM
Business professor Michael LeBoeuf famously stated, “A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all.” This may sound simple, but any working professional knows that satisfying customers takes more than a great product; it takes a great relationship, which is admittedly a much more complicated task. Here are three tips for working with difficult clients and customers:
July 11, 2013 06:18 AM
Editor’s Note: This is the second part of a two-part article. Part I can be found here. When a sale goes to the competition, sales managers are left asking “Why didn’t we win?” and “What do we need to do differently?” We addressed three steps to take in Part I of this article. Here are three more key steps.
July 10, 2013 12:00 AM
It happens more than ever lately. I’ll be reading an article in a magazine or newspaper and a story will be so off-the-wall that I’ll give the cover a double take to see if I’m actually reading The Onion, the satirical tabloid that cracks funny about important news of the day as well as the mundane.
July 8, 2013 12:00 AM
The stakes in pitching for multimillion dollar accounts are huge. When you lose to a competitor, beyond the lost revenue and profit opportunity, there are additional consequences. These include a possible decrease in stock price, negative press, a declining corporate image and emboldened competitors. In these situations, what often keeps senior executives up at night are the questions, “Why didn’t we win?” and“What do we need to do differently?”
July 5, 2013 12:00 AM
July 1, 2013 12:00 AM
According to the Sales Operations Center of Excellece, 54 percent of sales operations departments are less than 3 years old.  Though this department is still in its infancy for many organizations, more mid- to large-sized companies are seeing the need for a focus on making their sales teams and processes more efficient.  As this role continues to gain traction, what was once considered a project manager’s wheelhouse has turned into the newly defined responsibilities of sales operations managers.
June 28, 2013 12:00 AM
We live in a world that communicates in small bursts and at the speed of light. Because of the flood of information we are inundated with, we jump from receiving to reacting, without even a moment of pause between the two. But it is in that moment that you can change relationships and create opportunities by taking the differentiating approach of responding thoughtfully and showing that you genuinely care. Your personal satisfaction and influence will both skyrocket.
June 17, 2013 12:00 AM
One of the secrets to sales success goes back some 3,000 years to ancient Greece. The philosopher Socrates used carefully crafted questions to help his students learn more, using knowledge they already had. Now, many top salespeople use “Socratic questions” to qualify prospects and understand their pains, passions and priorities. These top performers then match their ideas, stories and information to meet the prospects’ buying criteria. Sales success is all in how questions get asked.
June 14, 2013 12:00 AM
One of the biggest problems in any company with separate sales and marketing departments is what is sometimes calls sales and marketing alignment. This can be a problem regardless of how large or how small. In other words, how do sales marketing get along, how do they interact, and how can the processes between them be improved? At LogMyCalls.com, we have analyzed millions of calls and we have some insight into the subject. From the marketing team’s perspective, here are five ways the sales department can really make the marketing department angry.
June 10, 2013 12:00 AM
Managers are forever looking for ways to improve their team's performance – be it the latest business book, closing technique or marketing automation tool. But they often overlook a valuable tool that's right under their noses: their organization's talent management practices. Talent management is generally defined as the set of practices and processes used to manage recruitment, performance, goals setting, development, succession and compensation.
June 7, 2013 12:00 AM
S. Anthony Iannarino wrote in a blog that “All generalizations are lies.” One of the biggest and most damaging is that cold calling is dead.
June 7, 2013 12:00 AM
One of the secrets to sales success goes back some 3,000 years to ancient Greece. The philosopher Socrates used carefully crafted questions to help his students learn more, using knowledge they already had. Now, many top salespeople use “Socratic questions” to qualify prospects and understand their pains, passions and priorities. These top performers then match their ideas, stories and information to meet the prospects’ buying criteria. Sales success is all in how questions get asked.
June 3, 2013 12:00 AM
No matter how much your sales associates love working for your company, none of them love it so much that they would do it for free. And while a base salary and commissions are nice, the sales contests and incentive programs you provide are key to demonstrating that your organization recognizes and appreciates the associates who go the extra mile.
May 31, 2013 12:00 AM
Social media has clearly become a force in business that won’t be dismissed. Unfortunately, while most companies understand that, few have developed the capability to leverage this ubiquitous communication tool to advance their sales teams’ efforts.
May 29, 2013 12:00 AM
The marketing content pipeline is closely related to, yet distinct from the sales pipeline. By delivering the right content via the pipeline, marketers are able to interface with customers early on in the lead generation process and then continue to feed salespeople with the materials they need throughout the sales effort. Marketing can prepare to contribute to the pipeline by first conducting market research – the core component in the beginning of any lead generation/customer acquisition effort.
May 26, 2013 12:00 AM