Dec. 19, 2019

45: In B2B sales, focus on the next Yes


Do you feel like too many of your opportunities slow down or stall? Most of us have lived through that. Keenan gives his perspective in Gap Selling.

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Transcript
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Do you feel like too many of your opportunities slow down or stall? Most of us have lived through that or living through it right now. Keenan gives us his perspective in gap selling.

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welcome to the bite size sales podcast where we believe that sales is the most important team and a B2B company that the sales team deserves great sales skills training but usually doesn't get it. And that taking bite-size steps each day to get better at your craft is the best way to improve results. I am your host Andrew Monahan , and I'm using my experiences in B2B sales to bring you simple actionable ideas every day to help you get better

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So this is now episode 45 of the podcast. Welcome to this one. We're in the , the run into the end of the year now for those of you listening to these pretty much to the same time as they're released. So the topic for this week is something that has gotta be in the top three most common seller pains that I hear again and again and again. And that is my deal stall or my sales cycles are too long. This happens to all of us. It seems to be getting worse as well. You know, I look back over the last 20 years or so that I've been selling and thing that , uh , I never thought I was fast, but it seems to be slower these days. And Keenan addresses this in his book a gap sellings let me read directly from miss to tee this up. If you've been in sales long enough, you know that a sales cycle is made up of a set of stages that allow us and our organizations to properly track our opportunities, engage the probability of a close. Unfortunately, most of us are taught that sales cycles are linear, but that's wrong. It's mistake that has caused many salespeople to exhaust themselves unnecessarily and even wind up completely off track. A sales cycle should actually look more like a rising staircase than a horizontal straight line. Sales people tend to think that they're putting superhuman efforts into the sale. They must be moving it forward. Unfortunately, they're only moving it upward. What makes a sale move forward? The word yes. Remember that ? Remember how we discussed that you have to earn an invitation to help the customer. Every single yes you hear from the customer is a renewed agreement to work with you. If you're not hearing yes, you're not approaching the close . Make no mistake every yes you hear as a small sale. In fact, a sale is made up of hundreds of little sales conducted throughout the selling cycle. Early on, you'll want to hear the customer agree that yes, there is a problem and yes, he's willing to work with you to solve it. Once you move into suggesting a solution you want to hear, yes, the solution could indeed be a good fit for the organization. Later, if you know the decision process, include a meeting with a CEO you'll want to hear, yes, we'd be happy to set you up to meet with a CEO. If you know that you can't make the sale without seeing product specs, you'll want to do what it takes to make your customer ready to say yes. We'll send them your way at each step in the sales cycle. You and your customers should be moving together toward whatever it is your customers say needs to happen before they can buy. Is your gap selling? They should be as invested in the process as you are. And that's straight from the boat gap selling by Keenan . So this reminds us all that a sale is really just a series of commitments from the prospect to take the next step forward with us and only one of those commitments is actually the PO or getting a contract sign . And I like how Keenan has made the distinction between effort and moving things forward. And I think the danger is that we feel like we're busy, we feel like we're moving things forward just because we're expanding a lot of effort and it is a danger, right, is not always the case. We want to show sometimes to our leadership that you're working hard than the deal and therefore it's good effort. Well expended when if you just sat back a little bit and said , what do we actually have to do to move us forward rather than up the way? You might not have to do so much work. So my action from this is I would, if I were a USS every one of your opportunities that you're working on right now and figure out what actual next step needs to happen to move the deal forward and do it with your prospect as well. So make sure the two of you are in alignment about what has to happen to keep moving these forward as opposed to just expanding effort and then keeping them in that sale, same sales stage each time. Um, and if you can do it together, then you have a mutually agreed path to keep moving forward, to take these next steps and can have honest conversations along the way when next steps don't happen. So that's my challenge for you. How can you move each of your deals forward and not just up

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If you liked this episode, please share it wide and far spread the word. I get energy from seeing people download and use this content. So please just take 20 seconds to share with anyone you think would like it to

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episode is sponsored by unstoppable dot du . Most sales teams are not trained effectively in the skills and mindset they deserve. And these are the most important people in the company. It's no wonder that only about 50% of reps make quota every year. Unstoppable is a service that helps sellers and leaders get great at the skills and mindset they need without taking time out of the field. It exists because if the sales team has the right skills and mindset, they thrive. They are confident, and they perform much better. Find out more. And even get a free sales book@bitesizesales.com none of the wrap up as J D Bryce VP of sales at McAfee may or may not have one set training without implementation is just entertainment and prefer entertainment when Monaghan does it. So make sure you take action on what you learn and keep getting better every day. This world does not need more sales BS, so don't create anymore . Be great at the fundamentals. Be honest, be real. Be yourself. Just do not be us. And finally, I'm setting off as the great Joe Sexton would by saying, gone to sell

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