Hello all. Rob DeRobertis checking in for the Technology Marketing Center.
It has been a crazy bunch of months for me on the day job. A few weeks back I spent a week with the sales team. We had the typical sales training where the most important part of the training is what happens in the hallways, not the death by PowerPoint us marketers impose on the sales team once or twice a year.
I was sitting there thinking about why I love sales people. Now I say this with a caveat. I love the top performing salespeople. Those guys and gals who consistently close the business deal and more importantly deliver the revenue. So here are five things I love about the best performing sales people.
1) Empathize with customer. It is part of their psyche to want to please the customer. They understand the customer’s needs and can discern wants from needs. They can come back to the marketing team and provide the guidance on the steps necessary to meet the customer needs while also achieving the business goals.
2) Know it is all about relationships. Great sales people know how to manage relationships. They know the customer hierarchy. They know the decision makers and influencers. These relationship managers know how to manage egos on both sides of the table. They connect the most compatible managers. They know how to get things done not only at the customer but also back in the office.
3) Are enthusiastically positive. The best sales guys are always so positive. Sometimes I wonder how they do it. How as a customer says “no” that they can walk out of an account dust off the meeting and say okay, let approach the problem from another angle. They truly know that the sales process begins when the customer says “No”. In their life everything is possible.
4) Drives a truthful relationship. This is a two way street. The best sales people can build a trusting relationship across many domains: marketing and the customer, sales and marketing, customer and sales.
5) Knows how to effectively use the tools provided by marketing. Great sales people look for the best sales tools and help the creator of those tools to hone in and improve the tool. They provide positive, structured recommendations and drive to create better tools to help them win additional customers.
Now if you think they make better product marketers… think again… read Geoff Anderson’s blog post about truly understanding the Voice of the Customer.