The highly successful sales professional is able to adapt and grow in any market environment precisely because they aren’t satisfied with their present level of competency. Instead, they constantly ask themselves two questions: 1) what do I need to learn that I don’t know now, and 2) what do I need to do to be more effective? Here are 7 secrets you can follow to stay in the habit of learning and developing your skills:
1. Refine your ability to ask good questions and be a good listener in every situation.
This is the best defense against the sin of certainty. It is almost impossible to ask too many questions, and every answer has the potential for unlocking more opportunities.
2. Read, read, and then read some more.
Read as much as you can about trends and news of the industries into which you are selling. Customers expect their sales representatives to know more about their industries than they do, not less.
3. Become a lifelong student of the art of selling.
Starting quarterbacks in the NFL are among the highest-paid players on their teams, yet they attend training camp right along with the rookies, and they take five times as many snaps during each practice as all the back-up quarterbacks combined. They do this not because they aren’t good at what they do; they do it because they want to be the best at what they do. The future success of the whole team depends on it.
4. Always be on the lookout for skill gaps.
Just because you are pretty good at something doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try to become even better at it.
5. Become highly proficient at using technology.
The Sales 2.0 revolution has rewritten the book on selling. Customers are now able to access almost as much information about your company and your products as you can, and they can definitely access what the blogs and customer ratings are saying about you. Your only defense is to become just as good, if not better, at leveraging technology to better prepare you to interact with customers.
6. Leverage the resources of the Internet.
First of all, this means using the wealth of information available on the Internet to do things like conduct research on specific companies and prospective accounts to learn as much as you can about them before you even make the first call.
7. Become an enthusiastic adopter of CRM technology.
A lot of sales professionals have still failed to grasp the power of CRM to drive revenue, but those who have are experiencing unprecedented increases in productivity because of the efficiencies and opportunities that can be leveraged through CRM.
Helping sales professionals develop new skills and strategies to drive peak performance is at the heart of the Sales Mastery processes and tools perfected by CloudCoaching International. We are happy to share strategies and skills to help you differentiate your organization from your competitors by creating a strong brand based on collaborating with the customer to help them achieve their most important objectives.
Rogers has created and led businesses in 13 countries on three continents, has been interviewed on over 100 shows on CNN, CBS, and ABC on the topics of sales, CRM, sales management and corporate productivity, is on the Advisory Board of DePaul University Center for Sales Leadership and was a Texas eCommerce Awards finalist for two consecutive years. His passion for CRM enabled sales performance transformation inspired his two books, Pathways to Growth, co-written with business partner Tony Robbins, and Spark!
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