Would Your Reps Score a Gold Medal in Sales Execution?

 

Posted By Kaitlyn Myers | Feb 19, 2014

 

Just like in the Olympics, sales teams face big victories, and many times, defeat. There are times when everything seems to go right and then BAM! There’s a snafu and the deal stalls out or falls through. The conditions may have worsened – budget cuts, turnover, reorganization, competing vendors – but there still may be ways to have a successful run. Even in 60 degree weather, despite melting snow and ice, and malfunctioning bathrooms, Olympians are still managing to medal in Sochi.

How do you overcome such adversities that are out of your control?

1. Relationships

By now, your sales rep should have developed a relationship with their prospect. Like the best pairs figure skaters, they should be so in tune that they know their prospect’s next move before they make it. Relationships are nurtured and built in personal settings. Engaging prospects outside of the meeting room – a round of golf or a nice dinner, perhaps? Getting the prospect outside of the office will allow for more candid conversations and can help get the “real” story and not just the company line.

 

2. Tools

Have you provided the necessary tools to help your reps in the field? If they’re on-site with a customer can they pull up a specific case study, ROI calculator, or even create a simple quote? Coming to a meeting without the right tools to help facilitate the particular sales stage is like Bode Miller showing up to the trails without his skis.

 

3. Resources

Does your sales team know who to contact internally for help? Especially in larger organizations it can be overwhelming to know who to contact. And, what if the person who usually handles requests is spending 2 weeks in Sochi? Providing tools (see number 2) that provide resources within them will save your reps time and ensure that a deal isn’t stalled out waiting on someone to return from vacation.

Sochi crowd

4. Strong Value Proposition

This is where many reps falter. Conveying to a prospect that the value you’re offering is higher than the lost value of not having you is as challenging navigating a ramp made of ice with only a small sled between you while careening down at 80 mph. Something like an ROI calculator that translates into a well-defined value proposition will make it hard for a prospect to turn you away.

Sochi woman skeleton

5. A Contingency Plan

Can your sales team adapt to changes that are thrown at them during the sales process? Being agile is key. Things change throughout the deal – sometimes very frequently. If your reps aren’t able to adapt at a moment’s notice, they could wind up falling flat on their face.

Sochi falling

Defeat can devastate or propel – everyone reacts differently. Your top reps are likely not used to handling such upsets. Like Shaun White, they are accustomed to winning …until they don’t. And, then when things aren’t going so well, do they have the tools they need to turn things around before it’s too late?

Making sure your sales team has the appropriate training to overcome even the toughest adversities isn’t always enough. As a sales leader you must ensure that they have the right coaching – even during game time. Empower them with the right tools to get them to the top of the podium wearing gold.