Imagine you are driving over a mountainous landscape. You are on the backside of the mountain and declining, allowing the momentum to take over, turning off your engine because it isn’t necessary. As you start to level off, your energy is no longer enough to keep you moving forward, and you are staring up at a mountain that is going to require that you exert the maximum effort to climb. To lighten the load, you decide to remove the engine from the car to lighten the weight and make it easier to push up and over the steep terrain in front of you.
Don’t Stop Selling
It’s a terrible idea to stop selling. Even though some will use any crisis to try to increase sales, doing so with a terrible bedside manner, and oblivious to the fact that they are self-oriented and calling on people who are not their targets. That is no reason for professional B2B salespeople to stop selling.
Nor is the fact that your dream client is trying to preserve their cash, hunkering down, and suspend their shipment of post-it notes and paper clips. As a consultative salesperson, you are required to know the difference between price and cost, and if you don’t, we’ll have to revoke your membership card (and all the benefits that come along with it).
When your clients are going to have greater challenges, and when they are going to need your help increasing their revenue, lowering their costs, improving their profitability, retaining their clients, and rebuilding their businesses, why would you withhold your help?
With a high-powered engine, you could not only power over the climb; you could push others over the top with you.
Don’t Stop B2B Sales Training
When it is difficult to get meetings because clients are tightening up and preserving cash, and when anything that was already in process is being put on hold, you not only have to keep selling, but you also have to tune your engine. Maybe adding a nitrous oxide fuel injection, a better idea than removing the engine altogether and starting the climb cold, and without momentum.
Any time you have available should be spent training and developing the sales force, skilling them up for the steep climb out of the valley and up to the top of the mountain. Improve your prospecting and write and develop new prospecting sequences. Work on the language choices that would allow you to gain the commitments for the conversations that will enable you to help your clients make the right decisions about their future.
Improving your B2B sales effectiveness is never more critical than it is right now. While you are not likely to be harmed by increasing your activity, you will never realize the full benefit of increased activity if you don’t also increase your effectiveness, be it incrementally for some, and exponentially better for others.
Don’t Stop Coaching
If there were ever a time when more sales coaching is needed, this would be that time. You have an opportunity now to instill a coaching discipline and a greater sense of accountability for results. Creating better results for your clients is the prerequisite to increase your results. The more you help your client rebuild their business, the more you improve your business (and in that order).
You can start by coaching territory and account plans, prospecting effectiveness, your team’s insights, and their ability to execute a modern sales approach, one that goes beyond solution selling and is something more than what some describe as insight selling.
Better leaders produce better sales results in large part because they make better salespeople. The salespeople on your team will never be as good as they might be without your help, your willingness to see something in them they don’t yet see themselves, and increasing your expectations of them individually and as a team.
Accountability to grow and improve is the first accountability a leader should expect of the people in their charge. It’s also the one that creates the most significant engagement and improves results.
Accelerate Into the Climb
Don’t decelerate going into a climb. Instead, accelerate. You want your momentum to fuel your drive, requiring less energy to get started and allowing you to shift gears and power through the steepest part of the climb. There is no doubt that your car would be lighter without an engine, but it’s a better decision to upgrade and improve the engine than removing it when you see the climb in front of you.
Momentum gives you a running start that increases your sense of control, your certainty and speeds your results. Start your acceleration now.
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Filed under: Sales