Sales. Love it or hate it?
I was on a half day sales training workshop run by Daniel Priestley this week, and that was one of the first questions he asked us. He said if you HAVE to choose, would you say love it or hate it?
I said if I really, really had to choose I’d say love over hate, but a lot of the comments from others on the training reflected more how I really felt:
“love it sometimes”
“i have a love-hate relationship with sales”
“i love parts of it”
The point with sales, he said, is that it doesn’t come naturally. It’s a profession. It’s practice. It takes work.
And the greatest companies in the world all have world class sales training and put an enormous amount of energy and effort into improving their sales process.
Apple requires 40 minutes of sales training every day for their retail team.
Rolex has a 3 day sales bootcamp every team member must go through before they can sell a watch.
Google has literal armies of sales people…and if anyone could automate it or get rid of the sales function, they could.
Sales. Takes. Work.
I admit I went into this sales training session feeling a bit ehhh….like, would it be worth the money I’d spent on it? Was I going to be given prescriptive questions which sounded unnatural and awkward?
But within those first few minutes, I was refreshed to discover hey, sales is supposed to be hard. It’s not easy for anyone. If it was, Google would automate that shit and then sell us all the blueprint and none of us would have to work at it.
It’s still a scripted process, rather than a friendly chat. But that process has flexibility, and warmth, and rapport, and connection. Three kinds of connection, actually:
- Logically connect
- Emotionally connect
- Urgency to buy
These 3 have to come together.
I took lots of notes. I’ve shared them with our team. We used some time in our PF Board meeting yesterday to dig into how we can be doing sales better at PF, and what kind of training we can provide the team who are doing sales.
I’ve been thinking lately about the “what got you here, might not get you there” concept – especially as PF has passed the 10-year mark, and we’ve worked with thousands of accountants, and it could seem from the outside that we’ve got our shit together and it flows easily and we don’t even have to try.
But the truth is, we’re always trying. Changing. Considering what works and what doesn’t. Reviewing the numbers. Revisiting. Reconsidering.
And sales is an area I’m going to give more attention this year.
I booked that sales training fairly last minute. I hadn’t planned on it, but the email came in and the workshop was on a day I’d blocked out to work on strategy, and I want to learn from the experts.
Plus, it gave me the chance to practice more sketchnoting, which I haven’t done for a while. #creatvitypillar
And most of all, it showed me that my brain energy is finally being restored to pre-broken-ankle stage, which is a big relief!