Blogs Leadership Development Sales Development Sales Leadership

Leadership truths no 1: Great leaders are open-minded and always learning

Do you find the myriad of different leadership models and theories difficult to navigate? You’re in good company! Personally, I find it helpful to focus in on areas of commonality or convergence, as well as what the research tells us about these areas – this tends to lead me away from the buzz words and passing trends.

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Good salespeople are low in empathy, aren’t they?

According to a recent YouGov survey, a majority of Britons feel that empathy is on the decline in the UK.  Are we turning into a nation of people who see events only from their own perspective? Are we less interested in other people’s views? And if this is the case what relevance does it have for sales?

Whether we’re being cold-called by our utilities provider to commit to a longer-contract with more add-ons for only an extra £7.50 a month or encouraged by our car insurance provider to add legal protection or no claims discount cover again for just a small increase in our premium, it seems that the customer is increasingly seen as someone who should be wrung dry for every available penny regardless of what their actual needs might be.

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The importance of the salesperson in complex sales

In a strategic sales environment, selling is complex:

Potential customers are more informed about both the selling organisation and their competitors. 82% of business buyers agree that technology has made it easier for them to take their business elsewhere. (State of the Connected Customer, Salesforce Research October 2016)
There are more individuals involved on the buyer side. The number of people involved in B2B solutions purchases has climbed from an average of 5.4 two years ago to 6.8 today (The New Sales Imperative, CEB 2017)
These individuals come from different departments and have different, often conflicting, goals and priorities. As a result, decision-making takes longer; 84% of customers report that their purchase process took longer than expected so that the average purchase decision now takes 4.9 months (CEB 2017)

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