I just returned from Richardson’s Client Forum and, as always, learned a ton from their visionary CEO, David DiStefano. He said that value is in the eye of the beholder. Many were surprised to learn this fact: 75% of sales people believe they differentiate themselves during the selling process; however, customers say that sales people differentiate themselves only 3% of the time.
That is a huge difference!
Of course, changing the conversation to value is intuitive for some and difficult for others. However, we are all aware that 60% of our customer’s buying process happens before the seller gets involved, which means we have a lot of catching up to do. So what can we do about it?
Here are three ways to help Change the Conversation.
Your sales people may have the will but they may not have the skill to have value-based conversations; therefore, you may need to evaluate if skills training is required. There are many firms that can help you develop the right skills to drive the types of conversations that garner each key stakeholder’s goals, strategies, challenging issues and initiatives.
Use role selling
to find out more about different key stakeholders at every level of the organization. We must provide insights based on diligent research and change the value we co-create with customers to be able to differentiate.
And, equally as important, sales leadership
needs to be part of fostering change. As sales leaders, we need to change the coaching conversations and help to create and communicate value. Sales leadership needs to communicate that the change initiative is not like moving mountains
while demonstrating the benefits of change to the sales team on an ongoing basis. When coaching, set up a 30/60/90 day plan to help each of your team members crawl/walk/run as they try to embed the new skills into everyday conversations with their prospects and clients.
And let’s remember that for many, connecting the dots
does not come intuitively and sales leaders have to coach to get the desired outcomes. But without skills training, the sales coaching may not yield the desired results.
How has your organization successfully changed the conversation?