Posts Tagged ‘Sales Training’

Most salespeople today are infected with an ‘anti-sales virus’ and that this ‘virus’ acts as a sales repellant. The ‘virus’ has been infecting salespeople for years and it’s unknowingly

Anti Sales Virus

The Anti-Sale Virus Infects Unknowingly!

handed out by their companies, sales managers and sales trainers? Even more importantly, when a salesperson is left alone they’ll catch this ‘anti-sales virus’ all by themselves, and even help spread it to other salespeople. This ‘anti-sales virus’ is the reason people don’t like, trust or believe salespeople today.

The good news is it can be cured, and must be if you want to increase your sales, achieve and build a thriving career in sales. It must also be managed daily buy sales leaders, business owners and executive if they want their businesses to grow and prosper.

Before we get to the cure you need to know that when sales are weak, or economic conditions get tough, the strength of the ‘anti-sales virus’ increases, more is handed out and it spreads rapidly though most companies? I have found most salespeople think, “Not me, I couldn’t be infected with this virus”. This virus has been growing for decades and if it isn’t treated with the ‘antidote’ it eventually makes salespeople very average. In fact, it makes them all look, sound and act the same. What if I told you the ‘antidote’ has been around for years and really works?  Wouldn’t you be the first in line saying, “Sign me up” and “Where do I get more?”  The cynical salesperson wants to know how much it costs. What if I told you it’s free and the supply is unlimited? Well, guess what, it’s real, you can take it all the time and it will not only increase your sales immediately but help you grow a large healthy customer base.

produit_Antidote_0

The Antidote…You’ll Needed It Daily

Remember, the supply of  the ‘antidote’ is unlimited and free! However, even when you know what it is and how to use it, you’ll have to take it every day and you’ll have to keep taking it every time you engage someone in a sales conversation. In short, the ‘antidote’ is simple to use but wears off easily because other people will be trying to give you the ‘anti-sales virus’. This usually happens unknowingly and if you aren’t careful it’s easy to catch this virus!

By now, I know you’re ready for the active ingredient…The ingredient that causes the ‘antidote’ to attract and the ‘virus’ to repel is a salespersons’ intention when engaging people in a sales conversation. Before a salesperson opens their mouth to speak, their intentions are felt (like the scent of a potion) by the people that are attempting to sell. People then decide unknowingly, preconscious, to connect or avoid the salesperson. The salesperson’s intentions create their demeanor, presence and attitudes and cannot be faked. What people feel, and salespeople communicate,  are the genuine intentions of the salesperson.

The effects of the active ingredient in the ‘virus’ the salesperson has is evident when consumers avoid talking to or opening up even when salespeople ask good questions and genuinely cares about the people they are trying to sell but is infected with the ‘virus’.

‘Trying to make a sale’ is the active ingredient in the ‘anti sales virus’. The ‘virus’ even sabotages skilled salespeople who believe in their product and company, care about the consumer, but unknowingly are infected! Even they will repel people more often than they attract them. You can’t hide the virus from people…it is always showing!

The best example of the effects of the ‘anti sales virus’, or intention to make a sale, can be witnessed in a new home sales office when watching the interaction between consumers and salespeople. If there is a salesperson and a temp in the sales office and a consumer comes in, they will most often engage the temp and avoid speaking to the salesperson. I’ve personally witnessed this and over the years had many new home salespeople confirm this behavior by consumers.  It’s amazingly interesting that people are attracted by the ‘antidote’ the temp has taken or repelled by the ‘virus’ the salesperson is infected with. People will engage the person that is not infected with the ‘virus’ from the intention ‘to sell them something’.

Most companies, sales managers and sales trainers want salespeople to say the right things to create a better conversation with consumers.  They want and teach salespeople to ask better questions and be better listeners. The problem is, when salespeople try to do this, while infected with the ‘anti sales virus’, consumers won’t engage them and the engagement or conversation stalls.  As long as a salesperson is infected with the ‘virus’, sales will continue to be difficult and the relationship between consumers and salespeople will grow more dysfunctional. In short, people will keep avoiding salespeople until they become extinct.

The active ingredient in the ‘antidote’ is found in the intentions to help, serve and do what’s best for the consumer. The intention to make customers, not sales, is the missing ingredient. In fact, the intention to sell is the spoiled version of the intention to make a customer. The ‘virus’ wasn’t and never has been anyone conscious intention. It just mutated over the years from paying to much attention to the desired results companies, sales managers, salespeople and sales trainers wanted to create, instead of paying attention to what would create the results. Too much concern over what we want and not enough concern over what customers want. It’s also obvious that in a difficult economy we spend more time worrying and obsessing over the numbers and less time concerned about the customers concerns so the effects of the ‘virus’ worsen and spread.

When the ‘antidote’ is taken, the missing link in the sales conversation happens…a connection between the salesperson and the consumer. This connection causes or allows a conversation or real dialogue to take place so a healthy relationship can begin. This is the power of the ‘sales attraction potion’; it makes the consumer/salesperson connection happen and allows the other ingredients in the ‘sales potion’ to be used to best serve the consumer.

The steps of a sale, which have been taught for many years in various forms, only happen when this connection is made. Consumers only engage salespeople who have taken the ‘antidote’.  When the connection is made, people are served, customers are made and sales increase while business grows. After taking the ‘antidote’, salespeople are free to enjoy the profession of selling as the noble profession of service it was intended to be.

Whether you have taken the ‘antidote’ and whether companies encourage their salespeople to take the ‘antidote’ will determine your sales success!  Keep handing out the ‘virus’ and you will keep struggling to make customers and grow your business. In fact your salespeople will look, sound and act so much like your competition all they can be is average at best.

The intention to help, serve and do what’s best for the customer is the active ingredient in the ‘antidote’ that attracts customers and increases sales. It is the ingredient that leads to your sales success and needs to be handed out daily!

By Mike Moore

IMG_5116

Tired of the traditional sales training and the dysfunctional buyer and seller relationship that exists today? Do you really want to deliver a world-class customer experience? Are you ready to stop complaining, making excuses and do something different to change your results? Or, are you not convinced it’s really that bad?

Studies keep revealing what anyone in sales, who’s honest with handshake-respect
themselves, already knows…Buyers don’t like, trust or believe salespeople, and salespeople don’t respect or trust buyers to make good decisions.

So, do you really think it’s a good plan to keep teaching and training salespeople to do what they’ve been doing to create this existing dysfunction? You can keep doing what you’ve been ding, work harder and complain about your results, or you can make real changes that will result in a new healthy relationship that benefits both the buyer and the seller.

Remember that change is inevitable but improvement is a choice that requires new thinking, attitudes, skills, actions and leadership. Sales leaders make real change while sales managers work hard at managing the existing dysfunction. A sales leader is a compass always pointing towards improvement.

So, if you’re going to be a sales leader your purpose needs to shift from traditional sales intentions to healing the existing relationship between buyers and sellers. If you are going to do this you’ll have to believe it will produce dramatic sales results.

You’ll need to try a new approach, one that will develop your salespeople into likable, trustworthy, experts, who become more helpful, caring and courageous.

If you are or want to become that sales leader, the one who can make a real difference, contact me and let’s get started. Let’s make your next event, workshop, seminar or training session a breakthrough event that produces new levels of sustainable success!

By Mike Moore

Selling isn’t something you do to people, it’s not something you do for them either. Most salespeople are busy talking at people, making presentations or asking questions to try and figure out how to sell them their product or service. I’ve been asked often, “What’s wrong with that? Isn’t that the purpose of selling?” My answer is an empathic, “No!”

Selling is something you need to do with people. Sales are a result, not the purpose of selling. Selling is a noble profession, a vocation really, when it is done with people, to help, serve and do what’s best for them. Selling is only perverted when the sale becomes the purpose or focal point and money becomes the aim.

If you truly want to increase your sales, grow you business and make more money, you’ll begin to be a ‘servant on a mission’ to help people. Then, and only then, will you begin to connect and communicate with people. Because then, people will connect and communicate with you. The intention to make a sale and the pressure applied by businesses, sales managers and sales trainers to make sales the focal point, or intention of a sales engagement, has damaged the profession of selling by creating mistrust of, and contempt for, salespeople. The intention to make a sale, makes people retract from salespeople. In the end it sabotages the very result everyone wants…More sales, more customers and more money.

When you become a ‘servant on a mission’ you also become an advocate for consumers and buyers. You become the trusted advisor who’ll be invited to lead and guide people on their buying journey. You’ll begin to make customers, not sales! Your business will grow and your results will amaze you when you let the sale be an outcome, a result of a higher purpose to help, serve and do what’s best for the buyer.  When you engage people in a sales conversation with their interests as the focal point, not yours, they can feel it and you become different. Make no mistake, until you do this, you will look, sound and act like every other salesperson and your results will not change and your passion for the profession of sales will not grow or be fulfilled.

Become the ‘servant on a mission’ and separate yourself from the pack so you’ll be invited to lead and guide the buyer on their buying journey. Great salespeople have always been servants who let the sales be a result of their service not the focus of their efforts.

By Mike Moore ‘First Posted, April 2012’

When you are a buyer how do you want to be treated? What matters to you? What do you believe salespeople care about when they meet you or greet you? Can you tell when they are trying to sell you something? Does what they say, the way they say it or the words they use matter much if you know they are trying to sell you something?

For years, salespeople have been taught what to say and how to say it as sales skills and sales techniques to increase sales. In sales seminars salespeople most often want to know what to say to handle objections and how to ask for an order that will increase their sales. Salespeople want to learn the steps and how to deliver or control the conversation so they can make a sale, then they want to repeat it over and over and hope it works on everyone.

Look at the results teaching and selling this way have created. Buyers don’t trust salespeople and salespeople don’t believe buyers. Teaching sales this way also increased salespeople’s intentions to make a sale stronger and their ability to engage and therefore serve people weaker.  All this has been while knowing sales needs to be a dialogue and salespeople need to build relationships to help people buy. Just think about the way this has been done…now keep reading.

Now, think about how people really communicate.  Most studies have found that as much as 93% of communication is non-verbal. Communication happens through all our senses and not just our hearing. In fact, most people’s weakest communication skill is listening. We can listen and take in input so much faster than people talk that most people are thinking and their thoughts are wondering while they should be listening.  So the words we use are one of our weakest communication tools. Or is it?

People are poor listeners and aren’t interested because they don’t believe the person talking cares about what they care about or don’t like and trust the person talking. So it is our misaligned intentions, our desire to convince them with what we say that weakens listening skills and makes people more interested in talking than listening.

Non-verbal communication is more than body language. It is energy, conviction, confidence and many other emotions that deliver the real message behind the words. It is generated from your intentions, what you want to have happen or receive from the engagement or conversation. Making a real connection and creating a conversation where a relationship forms always starts from a connection made from non-verbal communication coming from our intentions.

When two people engage each other they make many decisions about each other before a word is spoken. In fact, the studies have also found people decide if they like and trust someone within the first 8 to 40 seconds of meeting. This decision is made mostly through visual and sensory input that speaks to the brain stem and sends a gut feeling or intuitive sense and creates pre-conscious thoughts that allow or stifle open communication. When a positive connection is made between two people an open conversation can happen based on the preconscious decision to like and trust. This communication can lead to a positive fruitful relationship. If the preconscious thoughts are to not like or trust then a negative connection is made and a conversation may take place but it will not be open, honest or end in a fruitful relationship.

These realities about how people communicate are the reason salespeople need to be less interested in the words they use or how to talk to someone in a sales conversation and more concerned about the pre-conscious communication coming from their intentions.

If you are a salesperson, what are your intentions when you meet or greet someone in a business situation? What non-verbal communication are you sending? Should someone like you and trust you? Even if you are intent on uncovering their true needs and satisfying them, what is your real intention for doing that? If your intention is to sell someone, do you really expect them to like and trust you? If they don’t make that connection, are they likely to open up, share freely and allow you to find out what they really need or want? People only share their ‘why’ they want to buy with someone they believe intends to help them.

Most of the sales skills taught and learned by salespeople over the years are valid and can help them serve people but they won’t be effective if the person they are selling doesn’t decide they like them and trust them enough to open up and communicate freely. If selling is a dialogue and not a monologue then salespeople’s intentions have to change so a positive pre-conscious  connection occurs and allows a dialogue or exchange of information to happen.

The intention change needed to be liked and trusted enough to connect and communicate are the foundation of Making Customers™.

The steps of a sale become destinations on the buyers journey and happen naturally when a salesperson’s intentions align with the buyers. Salespeople become servants on a mission to help people and customers are made, sales increase, business grows and selling becomes the noble profession of helping and serving people it was intended to be.

To learn more about the intentions that make this happen and how to implement them, email me at mmoore@makingcustomers.com or call me at 858-354-2802.

By Mike Moore

Many businesses have been losing money or experiencing shrinking profits for several years, reinvesting from their boom years and waiting for the economy to recover. If you’ve been focused on reducing costs, trying harder than ever to make more sales and waiting for this economy to recover, you’re in for a harsh awakening. If you’ve been saying, “We just need to hold on until the economy recovers”…Stop!  You are suffering from normalcy bias. You believe because what you’re experiencing hasn’t happen before it can’t be happening, so if you can just dig in, hold on and wait for what has become your normal to return it will all be OK, you’ll make it. Every great civilization that has come to an end experienced these same conditions, emotions and challenges. Now it’s our turn, and since it’s a global economy it’s a global issue. It’s a business leadership crisis that has to be faced and won, not just to succeed in the ‘new economy’ but to exist.

If the first step in recovery is acceptance, accept this…We are not in a recession, we are not in a downturn. We are in the GREAT TRANSITION to a ‘NEW ECONOMY’!  Business will not be done successfully as it was in the past…things won’t just return to the good old days because they always have. The old economic models are broken beyond repair and that’s actually a good thing. The past economic model was too selfish, served too few and didn’t provide enough value to people. The past economic model broke too mant natural laws. It didn’t celebrated money as the end result, instead of as a means to serve people. It focused on maximizing profits by using people by manipulation and marketing campaigns instead of marketing the real value a company provided people.

While most companies proclaim thier greatest asset is people, their people, both employees and consumers experience the effects of companies ‘profit first lesadership’ which focuses on new sales, not employee satisfaction and customer loyalty and in the end the relationship that builds a business has become so dysfunctional it ended the old economic model. Consumer and employee loyalty has diminished over the past 30 years until it’s non-existant and  yet we see businesses trying to get back to the basics today…the same old tired basics that destroys trust, confidence and relationships betweens buyers and sellers. In addition since all employees are buyers too, they start with the sense that their company doesn’t care about them or their customers just making a profit. Add these poor business intentions to a maturing growing global economy, changing demographics and the real .com boom, or use of the internet to communicate and do commerce and you have the perfect economic storm. There is hope…Every storm brings with it a new dawn, a new day and opportunity to rebuild.

The great news is there’s tremendous opportunity for businesses to separate themselves and become successful in the ‘new economy’ by becoming ‘customer first companies’. Focusing on making customers instead of making new sales and putting people before profits. This is the best way to increase sales, revenue, profits. Then a company can grow and prosper by continuing to provide real value to their employees and customers. To become a ‘customer first company’ and be successful in the ‘new economy’ requires ’employee first leadership’. This transition isn’t an easy one but it is the best and fastest solution if a business wants to succeed today!

Business leadership is one thing America has stay out front of and been innovators and leaders in…Today we are faced with the decision to change or perish…Our business leadership must change to become ‘people first’ less selfish and more focused on creating real sustainable value by enriching people’s lives. Without this transition companies and the economy will continue to spiral downward and the growing gap between the have’s and have not’s will widen until it destroys the economy completely. It’s really a core capitalist point of view that’s been lost…If you want to succeed, you have to help others succeed, not just profit from them or use them. This isn’t just a business crisis either, what we now deem the ‘American Way of Life’ is doomed and we are destined to be the next great civilization that perishes if we don’t take action to make a successful transition by shifting to new business intentions. Businesses can no longer attempt to market a great story and then deliver an average buying and more importantly ownership experience. In the ‘new economy’ the most powerful marketing messages will written and spread by our customers and if their ownership experience is average your marketing message will be average, nonexistent or negative. If you truly put the ‘customer first’ you can market this and it will grow virally as a positive perfect storm.

In 1954 Peter Drucker said, “The purpose of business was to create a customer.” This has never been more true, needed or obvious than it is today!

It’s time to get real, be honest and become trustworthy!  A successful ‘new economy’ demands that leaders and companies trust and respect employees and the consumer!  I didn’t say, make them “always right”, which was foolish and didn’t work! That was part of the old selfish economic philosophy of making sales and then doing whatever the customer wants to make them happy…All that did was drive up the cost of doing business. Oh, and you can’t just rename your customer service department, customer retention or customer care…that won’t get it done because the consumer never gets over the first impression that you just wanmted to sell them something. It’s all just customer service after the sale and it didn’t make customers and it won’t make your ‘new economy’  successful.

Companies have to be in this with the consumer to make them customers. Stop trying to sell to people and start doing business with people. This actually holds the consumer responsible as well and asks them to participate in their own satisfaction and loyalty. A successful company in the ‘new economy’ isn’t at war with the competition or the consumer but stays focused on finding their place of service and how best to enrich people lives by doing what’s best for their employees and customers.

A successful ‘new economy’ will be built one customer at a time and must start by making them a customer, not a sale. Customer service starts at hello and is your consumers buying journey in the ‘new economy’!

Customers are advocates for your business, they market your business, they are repeat buyers and they bring new customers to your business. Sales come and go, while customers stay and pay. If you want customers, then start with that in mind, make that the focus of your company. Stop try to sell people, it doesn’t work anyway!  Start by trying to make people a customer and that starts by caring about your employees and putting people before profits to drive more  profits to serve more people.  You’ll increase sales immediately by making customers and you’ll make customers with new intentions to help, serve and to do what’s best for them…No I didn’t say whatever they want…That doesn’t work. In fact, it’s made things worse and added to the dysfunctional relationship between companies, salespeople and consumers that exists today.

Filled and focused with new intentions, a new engagement and dialogue with consumers will happen that will create a healthy relationship and generate customers which increases sales. When you make customers, your employees will be motivated, your marketing message will be strong and your business will grow. This is the foundation for a successful ‘new economy’!

By Mike Moore

Sales Leaders…It’s time to challenge your status quo. It’s time to look in the mirror and ask yourself, ‘Why is the buyer and seller relationship so dysfunctional?’. 

I’m finding that most executives, sales managers and salespeople are in such deep rooted routines that they are suffering from tunnel vision. Even when they accept that the traditional methods of selling have damaged the relationship between buyers and sellers, they can’t break their routines or overcome the status quo they’ve created. The status quo has to be overcome if positive change is to be experienced. It’s a critical time and we need to start producing a new relationship that will better serve both the buyer and the seller.

If we keep doing what we’ve been doing, the way we’ve been doing it, we won’t experience positive change. In fact, with all the economic factors, we can expect near disastrous results. The core motive of business and selling needs to shift if the actions of salespeople are going to change enough to be noticeable by buyers.

The traditional method of implementing a sales process just won’t effect enough positive change.  Selling has been taught as a process that was modeled after top producing salespeople, with one missing ingredient…their motives and intentions. If you want to implement a successful sales process, teach the driving motives and intentions of these top performers. Stop trying to teach them how they sell.  Instead, teach them why they sell and they’ll engage and interact with the buyer like a top performer.

The intentions and motives of top salespeople aren’t to sell the buyer. Persuasion makes people retract. Ask any    psychologist. Top performers know that sales are a result, not the goal.  They care enough about the buyer that they want what’s best for them. They aren’t focused on the transaction, so closing isn’t a big deal. They are focused on making customers, not just sales, so they focus on the buyers ownership experience, not the buying experience. This gives them the courage to be open, honest and direct. They serve people and sales happen. These are the motives and intentions that can change salespeople’s behavior and dramatically change their results.

It’s time for sales leaders to rise up, take a stand and start helping their salespeople shift their motives and intentions to create passionate salespeople on a mission to serve buyers that will shine a positive light on the buyer and seller relationship.

 

Everyday, salespeople show up to their sales appointments and when a prospect asks,”Why should I buy from you?”, they make a feature, advantage, benefit presentation, explain their companies unique selling proposition or tell them why they are the best choice. When this same prospective buyer ask their competitor, “Why should I buy from you?”, the competitors salesperson does and says the same things.

If you want to increase sales, you’ll have to be different from your competitors. You need to look, sound and act different if you want prospective customers to believe you’re different. Businesses selling the same products have to guard against falling into the same routines as their competitors. It’s natural for people doing the same job, with the same human nature, to do the job the same way. That’s the problem, it’s natural. You’ll have to work at not doing what comes naturally if you want to compete, win and increase your sales.

Here’s three ways to separate yourself from your competition, increase sales and grow your business.

Change Your Intentions

Since most salespeople go to work to make sales, and this drives their behavior, change your intentions to making customers, not sales. This will move your focus from your company, products and services, to your customer. It will make you a better listener, slow you down and change your answer to the question, “Why should I buy from you?” You won’t be eager to make a presentation, instead you’ll want to know more about what your prospect wants to accomplish. You’ll start doing business with people instead of just trying to sell them. Since we get what we focus on, you’ll start making customers instead of just sales and your customers will make you more sales.

Change Your Routines

Make sure you stop trying to find the easiest way to do your job. Stop working to be comfortable and start making changes to your routine. In fact, make change a habit. When you get into a routine that feels comfortable and easy, it’s usually the same routine your competitor is in. It’ll make you look, act and sound the same. Change your routine by looking for the best way to do your job, not the easiest way. Again, it’s natural to look for the easy way to do something but that’s what your competitor is doing, so be different.  Stay fresh by changing regularly and stay motivated by knowing you’re doing what your competitor isn’t doing. Besides, routines often become ruts. They are just a grave with both ends knocked out, you can move back and forth but you’re already dead. Change will keep you motivated because change isn’t painful, resistance to change is what causes pain. In fact, if you stay out of ruts and embrace change, you’ll pay more attention and notice new opportunities to make customers.

Change Your Aggressiveness

This isn’t what you think it is…Most salespeople are people pleasers who want to be liked and accepted. Don’t let being liked and accepted keep you from being aggressive. Make a commitment to yourself to be more aggressive by focusing on helping people as if they were your friends. With friends, you trust your instincts, pay attention and know when they need help. When friends need help you don’t stop asking or trying to help them until you succeed. So, change your focus from being an aggressive salesperson to being and aggressive helper. Challenge yourself to make at least one prospect each month tell you to back off…It won’t happen because you’ll be paying attention and back off before they ask, just like you do with a friend when you start to irritate them. Make the attempt to push beyond your comfort level, ask how you can help, ask to do business with them even when you feel uncomfortable doing it. Be assertive and aggressive in attempting to be of help. You can always apologize and start over and this will make you different from your competitors.

You’ll have to be different to get different results…Nothing will improve until you do!

By Mike Moore

Selling has been taught and practiced as a process in business for many years. Today it’s becoming more evident that selling isn’t a process to be done to people or even for people. Selling is an engagement between people and has to be done with them. This new age of business requires people to people selling to be successful. For this to happen, people have to connect, communicate and relate. What we now know is, people don’t want to be sold and they don’t want a relationship with a salesperson either. They also aren’t as interested in being wowed as they are about getting what they really want after they buy. Think enriching lives more than enchanting them. Think serving people, rather than pleasing people because what they continue to say they want is, ‘Help’.

As it turns out, sales as a process didn’t work very well because the steps of a sale are more a map of the buyers journey than the steps of a process after all. This makes sense when you realize that critical path sales training originated from modeling top salespeople and attempting to replicate what they did to be successful. It also follows that relationship selling and all its variations still focus on executing a process.  The missing ingredient when modeling top salespeople was the intentions of the top salesperson when they engaged people in a sales conversation. This missing ingredient is what causes people to connect, open up and communicate. It’s this connection and communication that allows the steps that have been taught to happen as a normal part of the buyers journey to finding and owning what they want.

When selling is seen as a process, it’s focus is the steps and the seller’s execution of the process. This places the focus on the wrong side of the engagement. It makes the seller the focal point and leads a salesperson down a road the buyer doesn’t want to take. It will ultimately make the buyer retract from a salesperson and resist taking their buying journey.

The right side of a sales engagement will always be the buyers side, not the sellers side. When the seller focuses on their process they lose focus on the buyer. When this happens they lose the buyers interest or connection, and communication becomes poor at best. When the original steps of a sale are viewed as a map of the buyers journey, they make the seller aware of where the buyer is in their journey. This enables the salesperson to know how to stay connected with the buyer to help them reach their destination…Owning what is best for them. When this approach is taken, sales increase as a result of the connection and communication, rather than the execution of a process.

The best way for a salesperson to keep the right focus and maintain connection with the buyer is to focus on the buyers ownership experience, not their buying experience. When a salesperson stays focused on the buyers ownership experience they communicate with the buyer about the buyers reason to buy and not a process, presentation or the sellers reason to buy their product. This will result in increased sales, loyal customers and a healthy growing business.

Change your focus to the buyers reasons to buy, their ownership experience, align your intentions with theirs and stay aware of the steps of a sale as a map, not a process, and you’ll begin to connect, communicate and relate to today’s buyers, make customers, not just sales, and your sales will increase immediately.

Top athletes and performing artists prepare to be their best when their best is needed. When things get difficult and become the most challenging they are at their best. Their can be no difference with top salespeople.  The ability to perform well when their best is needed makes them clutch performers, great competitors and top salespeople. This ability goes beyond skills, it starts in the spirit, attitude and mind of top performers. It’s their motivation and mental toughness that separates them from the pack.

Average salespeople become frantic, crumble, are paralyzed to act and make excuses when things get difficult.  Top salespeople don’t make excuses, they find solutions. Their ability to perform at their peak, to be at their best when their best is needed, requires practice and preparation. These top performers are supported, motivated and inspired by leaders who are coaches and mentors. These leaders understand their job is to help salespeople prepare to perform. This is the job of the sales manager, a sales leader.

Sales leaders know their job is to reduced the perceived pressure that produces anxiety and fear and damages salespeople’s perfomance. Top sales managers instill the attitudes, thoughts and intentions that help salespeople overcome obstacles, eliminate pressure and produce peak performance. This is sales coaching, motivation an inspiration at its best. For those who think motivation and inspiration fades or goes away, Zig Ziglar has the best response, “So does bathing, but you wouldn’t stop bathing because the effects of the last one wore off.” Sales motivation and leadership is needed daily.

Study, learning and preparation would be other examples of things you must keep doing or the effects wear off.  Coach John Wooden taught that, “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts”. Stop learning and your sales will suffer.  So if you want to be vibrant and productive as the years go by, keep learning and growing. If you are to be a top sales manager, then a big part of your job is to keep your salespeople studying, learning and prepared, because this keeps them energized and motivate.

Vince Lombardi...Yes the one the Super Bowl trophy is named after.

Vince Lombardi, the great NFL coach of the Champion Green Bay Packers said, “The toughest thing I do is getting them ready to play each week”. He wasn’t talking about the game plan, strategy or x’s and o’s. He was talking about teaching and motivating professionals to perform to their peak. This is no different with salespeople. Sales managers must prepare salespeople to perform each day. In fact, sales is the toughest, most personal performing art in the world. Each day salespeople face people and situations that can deflate, demoralize and discourage them. One of the missing links in most companies is a sales leader who can pick their salespeople up and prepare them to perform.

Coaching, motivation and inspiration is more important to peak performance than the repetition of practice and sales skills which are needed but of less value without quality sales leadership.  Motivation comes from within but can be stirred, taught and  by a brought out by a sales manager who is a leader, coach and mentor.

The greatest coaches can’t put a program or game plan in place and then leave the person or team they are coaching and expect them to perform to their peak.  Their influence is felt in their presence, their daily leadership plays a key role in the results the person or team produces. This is true with sales managers as well. They have to be the positive force that keeps their salespeople focused and prepared to be their best each day.

Don’t think because you are talking, you are selling. Selling isn’t about how well you can present your products or services. It’s not about how much you know. In fact, it’s not as much about you as you think. You were given two eyes, two ears and one mouth for a reason. You should be watching and listening 8o% of the time and talking 20% of the time, and the 80% of the time you are talking, you should be asking questions. You have to be present and pay attention with the right intentions to truly be selling. The following poem helps establish the 80/20 rule for professional sales intentions. You’ll notice that the focus is 80% about the consumer or buyer and 20% about the seller. This is the 80/20 rule of professional sales intentions.

The Sales Professionals Promise

To assist you, not tell you.

To help you, not sell you.

To care more about you,

Than what’s in it for me.

To always do what’s best for you!

By Mike Moore

We are finding out more everyday about non-verbal, pre-conscious, intuitive communication. We are learning more about micro expressions, neuro-linguistic programming, memes, noetic sciences and communication daily.  Science is also uncovering more about the power of our thoughts and how they influence our communication. In fact the latest studies show that communication is only 7% words and 93% an emotional connection.

We know enough about how we communicate to know we can’t hide how we feel, what we believe or our intentions from the people we meet and communicate with everyday.  We know that people only open up and speak freely with someone they believe cares about them and that trust is given more intuitively than verbally. Trust is a decision people make in seconds when they meet someone and grows or is withdrawn based on behavior after it is given.

People communicate in many ways but too often people aren’t paying enough attention to connect and communicate effectively. Poor listening and very little attention to their other senses causes people to not understand what others are really trying to communicate to them.  When you interact with other people it takes all your senses and intuition to communicate effectively.

When you are paying attention to people you know how they are feeling and understand them better. You know almost instantly if they are happy, sad, angry or how they are feeling before a word is spoken and understand what their words really mean.

We know when our friends, family or co-workers aren’t feeling like themselves or something is bothering them.  Our emotions and thoughts can be felt by those around us even when we try to hide them. We can feel how someone else feels and know what they are thinking even before they speak and others know how we are feeling before we speak.

This is no different when salespeople communicate with consumers but these truths seem to have been ignore by many people in the profession of sales.

Traditional sales training attempts to teach salespeople what to say to people to persuade them to buy their products or services. This traditional sales process teaches salespeople to attempt to persuade everyone they meet to buy their product or service and focuses on the transaction.  This has been a recipe for failure that’s created the mistrust between salespeople and consumers. This relationship is at best oddly dysfunctional, and at worst filled with so much indifference it could have only ended in divorce, and it has, as it’s caused consumers to avoid salespeople.

We know that consumers won’t engage salespeople because they believe salespeople are driven by the selfish intention to sell them something.  This exposes one of the weaknesses of sales training that attempts to teach salespeople what to say… It won’t matter if a salesperson knows what to say if consumers won’t talk to them or believe them when they do.

For a salesperson to connect, communicate and create trust with consumers they have to shift their core intention from the desire to make a sale to the desire to make a customer. When a salesperson’s intentions shift to making the consumer a customer, they will to slow down, pay attention, listen and make the conversation about the buyer, more than their product, service or a transaction. This improved conversation is what traditional sales training has attempted to teach sales people to do, but has taught it as a skill set, with the intention to make a sale, which caused the consumers mistrust and retraction from salespeople. With the proper intention or focus to make a customer, consumers will engage, trust and communicate openly with salespeople and everyone wins.

Selling is the fine art of communication and by now it should be understood that consumers feel what salespeople feel and believe them only when salespeople truly care about the end result the consumer will receive from buying their products or services.

Focusing on making a sale is like focusing on getting a date. The more you focus on getting a date the needier you become and the less people will want to date you. So focusing on getting a date is very short sighted. Why do you want a date? What should the intention be? What will make people want to date you? If you said having a fun date and ultimately building a relationship that would provide more dates and a more enriched life, then you’re right. The focus or intention to make a sale is just as short sighted and sabotages making sales, because it makes salespeople needy and consumers want to avoid them.

Shifting the focus or intention to making a customer will move a sales engagement and conversation to the end result that consumers, salespeople and companies all want…Relationships that benefit the customer so much they build the companies brand and the salesperson’s clientele while increasing sales, revenue, reducing costs and creating sustainable growth.

Make the focus or intention shift today and watch your sales increase and business grow as consumers become customers.

By Mike Moore