The sales landscape is constantly changing. New technology, new platforms, new corporate structures and fluctuating economies can make sales environments challenging. Recognizing these changes, sales strategies and tactics will evolve, but if you are a sales professional, rest assured, there are 7 things that will NEVER change in sales:
1. Those that fail to plan are planning to fail
The best sales people always recognize the need for planning. If you don't plan your days, weeks, months and years you are inadvertently planning to fail. Develop a thoughtful and intentional Sales Playbook and make sure your Playbook includes an "Action Plan".
20% of your actions will drive 80% of your results
2. Prospecting is king
While the way we prospect may change, the need to embrace proactive prospecting to maximize sales success will never change. Whether it's cold calling, voicemail, email, InMail, messaging, or combination, proactive prospecting will always be the critical activity for sales professionals.
You don't have to like prospecting, you just have to do it. ~ Sandler Rule
3. A strong pipeline solves everything
Every struggle in sales can be solved by investing in your pipeline development each and every day. A larger qualified pipeline will produce more qualified opportunities, and more qualified opportunities will drive increased sales.
4. Sales people will always have 2 ears and 1 mouth
Listening more than talking will remain the winning competency in sales. Embrace and master the 70/30 rule (70% of the time listen and 30% of the time ask relevant questions).
A prospect who is listening is no prospect at all. ~ Sandler Rule
5. Relationships lead the way
The experts will tell you, purchasing decisions are made emotionally, not intelligently. And, people buy from people they "like and trust". So, while technology and AI continue to be a part of the buyer journey, the importance of human interaction will never be replaced.
6. Rejection is here to stay
One of the most challenging parts of working in sales is the sheer volume of rejection we receive. This will never change and if you're not getting a lot of NO's, then you're not speaking with enough prospects. Go for the NO, embrace the NO and celebrate the NO! The faster you get to the NO, the more time you have to engage with real opportunities.
7. Sales is not for everyone
Not everyone can sell as a job. Sure everyone sells in some way, but not everyone can do it as a profession. To be successful in professional sales, you need to possess some very key cognitive competencies:
- Ambition & Drive
- Problem Solving
- Process Orientation
- Taking Action
- Effective Questioning & Qualifying
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