Over the past decade, there has been an explosion of sales tools. Sales leaders have purchased on average, upwards of eight tools for their B2B selling teams. In spite of these expensive purchases, rep productivity is at an all-time low, with more reps missing quota in 2016 than experienced in prior periods. So, let’s step back and talk about sales tools for a moment.
Note: Today’s featured story is presented by Linda Broenniman and Dan Frumkin, Co-Founders of JustSoldIt!
We all know sales is about delivering value to customers, solving pain points and most importantly, building a human-to-human relationship. In fact, an argument can be made, that if you are going to deploy a sales tool, it should be aimed at improving the problem-solving matrix and focused on relationship building.
It’s apparent that many of the sales tools acquired over the years were purchased in haste, to keep up with organizational changes. Reps once congregated in regional sales offices. These offices were hubs of collaboration, face-to-face time with managers, peers, sales support and sales engineers. Reps shared sales stories, victories and losses, and sales materials. The office provided an atmosphere of inspiration, guidance, and comradery; these are currencies that propelled sales excellence.
So, what happened? Regional sales offices closed. Reps today operate out of their home office with a desk, smartphone, and a laptop. Coinciding with this enormous physical change came the advent of sales tools. In fact, the rise of sales tools made the closure of the regional office possible. The new tools rapidly became the source of product information, selling literature, proposal templates, pricing information, on-demand video, a list that goes on.
The Intangibles Overlooked
What’s missing from this new arrangement are long ignored intangible elements: the inspirational comradery and the swift transfer of sales winning information that was the fabric of life in the regional office. The essence was Rep-to-Rep communication (R2R), the transfer of tacit or informal knowledge. In the office, we all knew who won their deals.
The winners immediately became a great resource, the experts for the latest competitive information, product positioning and client feedback on new features. These spontaneous discussions, in the context of my personal deal flow, were enormously valuable. I was learning while engaged in the selling process. The information absorbed is still with me today. Ruth Kustoff, with Knowledge Advantage for Training Industry Magazine, states, “It is an organization’s underlying knowledge that will become the real competitive advantage”. Ruth could not be more spot on.
Sharing Informal knowledge wins deals
The regional offices may be gone, but we need not let that diminish R2R communication. In fact, the rate of R2R knowledge transfer can be improved, made to be routine. Again, in the regional office, we all knew who won. We knew where to direct our inquiries. But isolated within our personal home offices, we do not.
Isolation is the very reason that RadiateBuzz, Inc., (McLean, VA) is introducing JustSoldIt, for B2B enterprise selling teams. JustSoldIt solves this problem by enabling reps to find, in their own company, who sold what to whom. To find and connect with the sales expert that just sold it.
A Fool Proof Formula to Improve Sales Performance
The concept is simple. It is based on ‘deal dimension,’ the general characteristics of closed opportunities (i.e., solution sold, products, industry, competition, services, deal size and so on). From the JustSoldIt mobile app, reps input their deal dimensions for the opportunity they are selling. The response is an instant list of similar deals that just sold.
It gives detailed information on the selling rep, and the entire selling team, with complete contact information. Are you having trouble with the competition? Find a closed deal like the one being worked, and consult with a rep that just beat the competitor. Examples are endless.
JustSoldIt is painless to set up (in fact, the JustSoldIt team does it all). Sales reps do not need to enter data. No marketing or support staff are necessary to maintain or “feed the machine”. The platform is completely automated and has a low TCO. Our sophisticated matching algorithm assures quality matches every time, governed by our client’s business rules, machine learning and best practices. And JustSoldIt provides management with a wealth of metrics and analytics for improved decision making.
Informal Knowledge, A Real Competitive Advantage
By enabling R2R communication, JustSoldIt recovers the needed human elements of selling and encourages the development of day-to-day sales team collaboration, the consistent transfer of experience and wisdom. Regular informal learning supports organizational talent to do their job better, improve performance and gain on the job satisfaction. It enables reps to take responsibility for their own continued learning, managing their own needs, on their own timetable.
Might your sales numbers benefit from structuring the routine rapid transfer of corporate sales wisdom?
About the Authors Linda Broenniman and Dan Frumkin:
Authors and entrepreneurs Linda Broenniman, President/CEO/Co-Founder, and Dan Frumkin, CSO/Co-Founder, developed JustSoldIt for enterprise B2B sales teams. Nothing can beat the power of real people working together to share experience, knowledge, and perspective in real time. Linda has over 20 years’ experience in a wide variety of corporate leadership positions. Dan Frumkin’s career has focused sales, sales leadership roles, building sales teams, Business Development, and technology. JustSoldIt is a product of RadiateBuzz, Inc., McLean, VA., and San Ramon, CA. | www.radiatebuzz.com | 800.928.8884
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