As a sales speaker, I am often asked by sales leaders and business directors what sales process or sales system I think is the best so I thought that it was worth posting the answer here as it is relevant to anyone who wants to improve the performance, abilities and results of their sales teams. Some sales trainers and sales speakers might not like my answer but hey, I never said I was here to be liked!
Question: What sales system or sales process would you recommend?
That’s a great question and the answer is, “The one that works for you”!
But, which one is that?
There are lots of sales approaches and programmes that can help you to improve your sales skills, build high performance sales teams and achieve the sales results that you want. If you were to take a straw poll, you would hear most of the main players mentioned (Sandler, SPIN, Miller Heiman etc) and many other approaches too. People would happily tell you how they improved their sales using one particular model or another and then would wax lyrical about it. But which sales process is the best?
It is true that many of them are very good and that you, likely, could improve your sales using any of them… but… when you look at all of the sales systems lined up, you might well get very confused. The problem is that, on first sight, they will appear very different to each other but, when you get down into it, you will start to see more similarities than anything. Bottom line, they are all pretty similar.
Why are they so similar?
Because successful salespeople work with people, problems, solutions, value etc. It’s just the semantics, the ability of the sales trainers, the sales systems and the sales programmes that they’re wrapped up into that change.
But few sales training companies are going to admit to you the similarities between programmes. It is in the interests of the individuals selling these programmes to “big up” the differences. One system from one famous company – that I really like – talks about the HUGE differences between their programmes and the competition but when it comes down to it most of the things they are claiming about the differences are far smaller than is touted.
Certainly, there are some things in some systems which are not in others but mostly it is more of a case that one system will have a name for something which another system doesn’t therefore it’s easier to differentiate.Click To Tweet
But, different people will achieve better results with different styles…
There are many reasons for this – personal taste, style of teaching, ability of the sales trainer / coach, experience, mindset and whether the individual salesperson is ready to commit to working on the process.
And different teams too will get different results with different approaches based on all of the above, the culture of their business, their willingness to take action and also how appropriate the follow up and sustainability programmes are that help sales leaders to implement the new approaches.
I have worked with individuals in the same industry who rave about different systems but sell into the same clients – go figure. I have also worked with individuals who think that their success is down to a particular system or a particular set of sales skills but they aren’t actually using that system when you watch them in action.
Sales and selling is not that complicated and you don't need overly complex sales skills!Click To Tweet
So, why do people fail then?
Most people fail because they fail to put the work in. Only when you do that work can you even think about emulating elite salespeople. Top salespeople and top sales teams pull the best sales skills from all of the best systems but… you can’t go “freestyle” until you know the basics… and nailing the basics requires work.
As a final point, I would say that it is worth looking at the different sales skills systems, the trainers, their approaches and making your call but once you have made that decision, stick with it until you are “doing it”. Don’t look at any others until you know and breathe your own process as this can just confuse.
And, even more importantly, think about how you are going to support your teams in applying their new skills. As a sales speaker, I only run keynotes and masterclasses with sales team members, choosing instead to invest my time with sales leaders and directors, the ones who cheerlead and coach the changes.
If you want to know more about how my #IAM10 Sales Leaders coaching programme can help you to build high performance sales teams then give me a call on +44 (0)845 838 5958 and, if you’re not ready for that yet but you want powerful tips and strategies straight to your inbox then join my #IAM10 Insights here.