I know, I know, I know. How many times have we seen the claim ‘Secrets to Sales Success’ plastered over the internet only to be left disappointed?
Usually, these ‘secrets’, once you look into them, either leave you feeling duped because of the unethical biases they take, or you are left with lots of little bits and pieces of advice that are okay but are not coordinated in a manner that you can manage and move forward with them.
Like the diet and wellness industries, you could spend a lifetime trying to work out what you should do to improve your chances at sales success and still make no real headway.
So, what if there is a way to make selling easier, more psychologically palatable, something that you would be happy to be associated with in the first instance, and then committed to mastering as a life and business skill, to help you create and realise more and better opportunities for yourself, your teams, your business, your communities?
Now, wouldn’t that be something?
A purposeful sales system
In all the years I have been in sales, studying sales, working with sales leaders, sales teams and customers to create viable and ethical sales environments, developing and refining sales strategies and go-to-market plans, mapping sales behaviours and psychologically profiling tens of thousands of people in sales and sales leadership roles, I have found that the one real and true secret of sales success lies in having a purposeful sales system.
A purposeful sales system has a clear framework and structure and is underpinned by philosophies, principles and values like ethical selling, reciprocity, customer centricity, commercial pragmatism, a fair exchange value, and human centred selling that is delivered by people who value mastery over rah-rah.
Leading and managing a sales team and its operation involves managing a complex variable system that requires constant attention and considered action. Sales teams and operations do not follow a predictable straight line. They can look messy and disorganised at the best of times, which can be frustrating to the rest of us who like certainty.
Sales teams and operations become messy and disorganised when we throw our sales people in the deep end and expect them to sell better with no clear strategy, no value proposition or articulated sales process, limited training or no ongoing support. This is madness.
A reasonable alternative
This is why the real secret to sales success now, and in the long term, is about creating a purposeful sales system that works in a coordinated manner with your business, its vision, values and goals across three core pillars:
A purposeful sales system is a framework to create focused sales strategies, competitive value propositions and go-to-market action plans. These are delivered through prepared sales and customer-centric teams and environments with tangible sales models, visible sales process maps, and meaningful, customised training and coaching that give sales teams orientation and direction creating ongoing sustainable sales success.
For example, the Barrett sales strategy and operations model is a sales framework that accounts for the many variables that make for a purposeful sales system.
Selling better culture
Real sales success is created by re-educating and engaging the whole of business about the central importance of selling as a purposeful system that endorses selling as a team sport and enables everybody to deliver a meaningful customer experience.
Yes, it requires leadership from the top and a planned approach for change, but creating selling better cultures using a purposeful sales system sets up ‘how we sell around here’ and doesn’t take a long time at all to deliver more and better sustainable sales results, and more satisfied customers and employees. It’s amazing how quickly people adopt the system and make it their own. There is something very comforting to people about having a framework and system to support and guide them.
Having a system helps us keep on track, keeps us focused and also allows us to expand our capabilities and try new things knowing that we have something to fall back on and support us.
Sales success is achieved by design
In short, sales success is not achieved by default or chance, it is achieved by design.
Those sales leaders who take the time to understand and then implement purposeful sales systems create cultures and teams that can withstand the challenges and turbulence of changing markets, increased competition and buyer preferences. They know how to continue to sell better by sharing a common language and framework which allows them to continue to adapt and work as a whole team.
So you do not have to die wondering anymore. The real secret to sales success is a purposeful sales system led and implemented by purposeful and aligned people and teams.
Remember everybody lives by selling something.