I was honoured to be the keynote speaker at the Barcelona DHL Express Sales Champions Club celebration a few weeks ago. The theme of my message was: SellLikeNeverBefore- Help Each Other.
Let’s face it, letting go of a sales approach that has served millions of salespeople worldwide for more than two decades is not easy. We are habitual animals; that’s just who we are. For example, think about what you had for breakfast this morning and what you did after until you started your working day. Without realizing it, every morning looks very much the same, doesn’t it? We love routines; they are our comfort zones.
To improve our new way of selling, we should step so far out of our comfort zone that we forget how to get back.
That’s the goal. Put the theory of the new way of selling into practice until you forget the old selling habits.
But this is all easier said than to be done. We need action! As I said in Barcelona, we first need to realize that we are in this together. We are re-innovating selling. We face the same challenges:
- How different is the call preparation?
- How different is the call opening?
- What are powerful insights?
- How do you identify and overcome Hidden Competitors?
- How do you move customers out of Why Change?
- How do you not discuss solutions within the first five minutes of the customer meeting?
Here are three suggestions on how you can help each other that can be applied immediately (yes, starting tomorrow):
- Challenge Like Never Before. If you think every customer is different and your challenges are unique, think again. There are tons of similarities. You got to start learning more from each other.
- At your next sales meeting, ask three sales colleagues to share their SLNB challenges and collaborate as a team to find best practices to overcome these challenges. You will be surprised by the outcome. Continue to do this at every sales meeting.
- Coffee Like Never Before. Make your coffee breaks more educational.
- As a Telesales force in the office or Salesforce on the road, meet up with your colleagues and focus on the insights you shared earlier at your customer meetings. For example, what information, what story did you use in the morning that got the customer interested to learn more from you? Relevant Insights to the customer’s challenges kick start the Buying process; hence it makes sense to share and learn as much as possible from each other. In this way, you build up insightful stories you can tell other customers about similar situations facing similar challenges.
- Practice Like Never Before. As said, changing habits requires practising. Imagine learning to juggle with three balls. I bet you need at least one hundred tries to get to a decent performance. So, the best way to improve your new way of selling is to practice in a near-live environment.
- Buddy up with a colleague. Grab one of your dream opportunities and role-play the customer meeting. In this case, you play the customer, and your buddy plays the salesperson. This makes sense because you know the most about the customer and the opportunity. Share what you know with your buddy and start the role play. When finished, change positions on one of your colleagues’ opportunities. Ideally, you get a third person, For example, your manager, to observe and ask SLNB opportunity coaching questions after the call. What great learning for all three! This practising concept was created by Katharina Reinke of DHL Germany and has proven very successful. Thank you, Katherina!
So, there you have it—three ways to Help Each Other. Do not procrastinate. Nothing good was created from delaying things. Start this week. Go out of your comfort zone until you are comfortable with the uncomfortable, and you can let go of your old habits because you forgot how to get back!
Feel free to share with your teams and colleagues.