Thursday, May 21, 2009

Should I Follow My Company's Sales Process?

Most companies will usually have a sales process in place which they want you to follow. This begs the question - should I follow my company's sales process?

The answer is both yes and no. Yes, you should explore and look at the way your company proposes that you sell. Most companies have spent a good chunk of money coming up with an effective way to sell their goods and services. There is a good chance that there is some really good information packed into their sales process.

But on other hand, I'm going give you a "no" answer as well. No, you should never place 100% of your sales education on your company's shoulders. This is your career, not theirs. You need to continue reading and learning on your own - regardless of what your company teaches you.

Good salespeople are creative. This profession demands no less than that. Every selling situation you will encounter will be different, so the more information you are armed with - the better. When we read - we breed creativity within ourselves, and again good sales people are creative with their personal model of selling.

At the end of the day, your own sales process will be molded by your sales manager or company management, your own time spent learning & reading about sales, and your own successes and failures.

9 comments:

Stefanie Hartman said...

Great post. You can't follow an entire process to a t. Sales people need to be flexible and creative.

From the Author: Will Fultz said...

Stefanie,

Thanks for the comment.

Will Fultz

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Rick Roberge said...

Will, I think that I have to agree and disagree. If you're not going to follow your company's sales process, you should find another company. A company designs a sales process for more than just 'selling' the prospect. It should also establish benchmarks that allow management to track progress in the pipeline. It should also point to areas where debriefing, strategization, coaching and help are required. Your point about not relying on your company for all of your sales growth is absolutely true. learning doesn't stop at graduation. Neither should self investment. Thanks

From the Author: Will Fultz said...

Rick,

I'm not understanding where you are coming from. You want salespeople to follow their company's sales process to a "T" but also think they should educate themselves. After all this reading and information they learn, do you not want them to implement anything? It sounds like you want it both ways but this is not possible.

Thanks for the comment and I hope you can clarify.

Will

Rick Roberge said...

So, I guess it depends on whether you're talking about a selling system, like Baseline, Solution, Sandler, yada, yada...or, you're talking about a benchmarked sales process that's been designed specifically for a company to assist management with maintaining control of their company...or self education, like learning how to ask better questions, how to develop rapport, psychology, etc.

There may be "some" flexibility on the first. Should be no flexibility on the second and only the best will do the third. Enjoy!

From the Author: Will Fultz said...

Rick,

Thanks for clarifying and think this makes perfect sense.

Thanks again,

Will

Tim de Jardine said...

I think it all depends on whether the company HAS a sales process!!

I have always wanted to start learning and reading. Some of the best sales methodologies I have come accross stem from classics like TAS and FOX, you cannot beat those as it puts strategy into selling!

Michael Lovas said...

I've been helping sales people in the financial industry for about 25 years. I find that typically, when there is a sales process, it was developed by someone who is out of touch with today's target market psychology. For example, the approach of: close, close, close just doesn't cut it when the target market responds best to a consultative approach. Such is the case with the Baby Boomer generation who HATE to be sold.

Michael Lovas
www.aboutpeople.com