• Gert Scholts

Sales habits for professionals

This sales idea for sales leaders and sales people explains why developing good sales habits makes sense, how it benefits professional sales people, their leadership and what the key good sales habits are. A few bad sales habits are included!

Why have good sales habits?

Good sales habits improve sales success. Sales results follow when the habits are sound and are completed with great commitment and passion. An additional benefit is that knowing there is a road and steps towards success. This can inspire a sales person carry them through the inevitable tough times.

Good sales habits are aligned with the sales processes sales people use making sales. And when the sales habits are captured and measured, ideally through robust CRM, managers can better support their sales teams and make better business decisions.

The best companies articulate good sales habits as key performance indicators.

Developing good sales habits and well-defined sales processes are central to effective sales management.

What are good sales habits?

Good sales habits are repeatable steps needed to be a successful sales person.

Here are the key ones:

  • Finding prospective customers,

  • Engaging them,

  • Understanding their requirements,

  • Presenting your products/services,

  • Winning the deal

  • Urgency

A pure sales role may find that 80% of the time is needed to find prospective customers and 20% engaging, fact finding, presenting and winning the deal.

Account Managers develop and retain accounts. They spend no time at all finding prospective customers. All of their effort goes into the other sales habits.

Are there bad sales habits?

There are bad sales habits and you'll probably recognise some of these:

  • Waiting for an enquiry

  • Not following up on a deal because it is too small

  • Presenting a product without understanding the prospect's requirements

  • Death by Powerpoint and long monologues

  • Blaming others for the lack of success

  • Have no habits or structure at all

  • Lack of focus on outcomes

How sales people benefit from good sales habits.

  • Closing more deals – Having good sales habits is reflected in sales metrics. It delivers consistent results. As a seller I remember all my great sales and more importantly how I got them by having and executing the right sales habits. Are your sales people resisting a slightly more structured approach? Simply show them the undeniable and unbeatable proof in your sales metrics. This is not about gut feel.

  • Improving efficiency – Habits improve efficiency. It is not very different to a performing artist prepping and singing the same songs many times over. They become better and better at it with less effort, leaving room for more. Sales people will find additional sales opportunity with the customers when they apply the logic of good sales habits. That means more revenues for their company and more satisfied customers.

  • Confidence – Having a track to run on and knowing that the track leads to success, builds confidence in the sales person. That helps getting more sales.

  • Developing stronger skills through habits – The more you practise, the better you get at the job. Prospecting through social media and real world networking, fact-finding skills, presentation and negotiation skills all improve dramatically as the habit forming goes up. The improved closing ratios mean more revenues.

  • No need to reinvent the wheel with every new opportunity – This comes down to a comfort level and confidence executing time and again. No need of having to come up with new unrehearsed approaches for every opportunity, the sales person can rely on the tried-and-tested nature of their sales habits. Selling is about execution.

How sales leaders and their organisations gain from developing sales habits with their sales people.

In short, good established sales habits liberate a sales leader to support their team in the right areas and helps making better sales management decisions.

  • Better sales forecasts

  • It sets activity and results expectations

  • Up to date information to manage the sales funnel – A sales process should outline between 5 and 8 crystal-clear steps to take at each stage/habit.

  • Training needs analysis- The sales manager is responsible for training and motivating their sales team. By identifying strengths and weaknesses in each sales person’s sales funnel, the manager has an excellent starting point to train and motivate the sales team.

Developing good sales habits makes sense. It creates more sales. If you require input to stop bad sales habits and help forming the right sales ones with your sales team, feel free to get in touch

#saleshabits #salesprofessionals #salestraining #salesmanagement

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