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SalesGrowth MD, Inc. | Denver/ Englewood, CO

Sales Training Colorado

Credibility is defined as “the quality of being convincing and believable” or “the quality of being trusted and believed in.” Is there anything more important in the world of sales?

Contrary to frequent reports from some political and economic analysts the American Free Enterprise system is NOT going into lockdown mode in 2020. Regardless of your political persuasions or news stories to the contrary American business and small business in particular are poised for a big year in 2020.

Many firms are very focused and skilled at hiring the right sales professionals. From establishing the knowledge, skills, and attributes (KSA) that are required for success to leveraging pre-hire assessment tools companies have become skilled in process of recruiting and hiring top sales candidates. But then the break down occurs! In some firms all the emphasis on finding the best available candidate versus the best candidate available goes out the window with a weak and/or inconsistent onboarding process. The process required for taking newly minted sellers and developing them into top producers is often times MUCH less clearly established and structured.

LinkedIn is a powerful prospecting tool. That fact is beyond a shadow of a doubt.

What IS somewhat in doubt is exactly what that means in terms of how it is used. My personal position is that LinkedIn is great for identifying potential leads, getting introduced to those leads, and nurturing an online relationship.

A prospect who is listening is no prospect at all states Sandler Rule number 14. In this blog article learn an easy mnemonic tool that will help to make sure you are doing more listening than talking.

Most people have heard the title phrase and possibly even used it a time or two but do you know the phrase’s origins?

The phrase “We have met the enemy and he is us” is an offshoot of the Oliver Hazard Perry quote from the War of 1812 "We have met the enemy and they are ours”. The updated version gained widespread popularity when it appeared in the Pogo comic strip in the 1960’s as a Viet Nam War reference.

I was once asked about the top three mistakes beginners to fly fishing typically make and as I answered the question it struck me how analogous those simple fly fishing mistakes are to the world of selling. So here we go with the top three mistakes of beginning fly fishers and how we can learn to sell more from them.

I frequently ask senior leaders and owners of client firms how they prefer to buy or be sold.

I ask them questions like 1) How do you feel when you pick up your phone only to find it is a salesperson on the line and do you respond favorably to their call? 2) How do you respond to strong closing tactics? 3) How do you like it when sales people are aggressive and use obvious sales “moves” to try and keep you in the sales process? And other similar types of questions.

Selling to the modern, “plugged in” customer requires a different approach. 15 years ago the traditional sales approach was already reaching the breaking point in the B2B sales arena and now the “classic” sales approach of “pitching products/services” is simply not very effective .

Every salesperson lives for the thrill of the closing the deal. That magical moment when you realize the sale is going to happen is one of the greatest experiences for professional salespeople. It’s what keeps them going through the all-too-frequent rejections.

Remember, though, the lyrics from the classic Kenny Rogers song, The Gambler: “You’ve got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk away, and know when to run.” The song was about poker of course, but that advice can be applied to sales situations as well.

Upselling is a vital function of many firm’s growth strategy after the initial sale. Whether executed by a company’s Account Managers or by the business’s service team it as an essential, tried and true part of expanding business within existing accounts.

Downselling is something altogether different as it involves intentionally selling less to a prospect than they originally intended to buy on the front end of the sale.

I first began considering this question after reading Dan Pink’s most recent book “To Sell Is Human.” If you haven’t read it yet put it on your list. There was significant research presented in the book to indicate that a savvy seller might be better served helping clients “find problems” rather than the more traditional role of a “problem solver.”

What are your personal and professional limitations? What are you truly capable of if you just stretch a bit further?

The sad reality for most of us is that the majority of our limitations are self-imposed. Our true limits are almost always FAR beyond where we think they are.

The reason for this is what we call “head trash” and, trust me, we ALL have some. Our head trash is usually the result of self-limiting beliefs that, in many cases, have been in place since early childhood.

I don’t think many people in professional sales, or any profession for that matter, would put up too much of an argument to the idea that the way we buy has changed. The internet, social media, more sophisticated methods of advertising, and many other factors have driven this change.

 

 

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard a question similar to that. “The prospect seemed so interested when we spoke. They just wanted to think it over and asked me to follow up in a week. I did as they asked but then the prospect went dark.”

Have you ever had a problematic issue with something you purchased that was handled so effectively it caused you to become an advocate for the company you were dealing with? Most of us have had an experience like that and when you examine the root of what caused you to feel those emotions of loyalty seldom will you find that it was the resolution itself that engendered those feelings.

Given the popularity of the "sales enablement" movement and the articles associated with the same you could come away thinking that all you need to succeed in sales is the hottest technology. Not so fast, says Sandler Training President Chuck Terry!

What are 5 key behaviors that are common in top sales producers? Our President Chuck Terry draws the answer from working many years with top producers in hundreds of industries.

If you are involved in business development, at any level, ask yourself this question. What elements of converting a lead to a prospect and ultimately a customer do I absolutely control?

One of the most impactful Ted Talks I have ever seen was a presentation called "The Happiness Advantage: Linking Positive Brains to Performance" by Shawn Achor.

The presentation is about 6 years old but it is just as relevant today as when it was originally recorded. Check out the link above to judge for yourself.

One of the reason I love the talk is because of a key point Shawn makes which is especially true for folks in the selling profession. We are often conditioned to associate the achievement of sales goals and targets with the attainment of happiness.

In research by the University of Mississippi it was found that groups who preceded solving puzzles by asking themselves “can we solve this” outperformed the groups that told themselves “I can solve this” by 50%. In another experiment one group of participants were asked to write “I will” 20 times before solving a problem and the second group was asked to write “Will I” 20 times before solving theirs. You guessed it; the “Will I” group solved almost twice as many puzzles. It is great to be positive but the process of asking yourself “Can we do it”, like our friend Bob the Builder, actually causes your problem solving ability to kick into high gear.

In this excerpt from a recent interview for an upcoming article on “Best Practices in Sales Training” Chuck Terry, President and CEO of Sandler Training in Lone Tree Colorado shared insights on leveraging sales training to drive increased sales. Q: “Why should business owners believe that training their sales team can have a direct impact on increasing their sales performance?” Chuck Terry: “Maybe they shouldn’t. Traditional training approaches are falling short of that objective on a regular basis because the old model of sending your sellers to 2 or 3 day sessions just isn’t producing lasting change. That method really depends heavily on the client’s already overtaxed managers to be the ones responsible for taking their sellers from awareness of the process to ownership of the process. Those managers have a business to run so the job of coaching, modeling, reinforcing, and continuing to train the sellers after the initial training ends up just not happening more often than not. Sales training absolutely SHOULD drive increased sales but it only works when the training delivers lasting behavioral change with the sales team and that just doesn’t happen in 2 or 3 days.”

As most companies finalize budgets and business plans for the New Year, I thought it might be timely to address the subject of Goals, Strategy, and Tactics. For any organization, goals, strategies, and tactics cascade throughout the business. During the planning process, these terms are often used interchangeably. For the purpose of this blog, we will use the context of a sales organization to define them.

Given the enormous costs of making bad hires I decided to write a two part series on the selection process for sales professionals and sales managers. This week’s topic will be based upon putting the right motivated people in the right place.Let's start with this thought; if you want motivated people working for you, hire motivated people. BIG THOUGHT: You can’t motivate people, they have to motivate themselves and you can’t “train in” skills where potential doesn’t exist. A great quote from the book Start with Why by Simon Sinek is “Great companies don’t hire skilled people and motivate them, they hire motivated people and inspire them.” That concept alone was worth the price of the book!

Are sales people about to go the way of the buggy whip? Not by a long shot according to Sandler Training in Lone Tree President Chuck Terry.

What do the laws of a complex science like physics have to do with generating sales leads? More than you might think!

Quickly now, write down three things that differentiate your company from your competition. Now imagine I ask your competitors the same question. Do you think their answers might sound pretty similar?

Have you ever heard of the 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon game? A concept that started as a simple college game has expanded to become serious business when it comes to networking successfully.

All things being equal, people buy from people they like and trust. All things being unequal people STILL prefer to buy from people they like and trust.

The power of being likable in sales is a huge and undeniable advantage. Anyone who tells you relationships don’t matter anymore in selling is either delusional or misinformed.

I recently watched a video on YouTube where a welder had made a very simple mechanical customization to a bicycle. If you turn the handle bars one way the wheel turns the other. It seems like a simple enough proposition but it isn’t as easy as it might seem to adjust enough to ride the bike 10 feet. If you would like to see the video for yourself you can click backwards bike and watch the story. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

Tell the truth, didn’t you just envision the guy from the Dos Equis commercial? I LOVE those commercials but even though the spots are clearly designed to be funny they illustrate a very common misconception. The misconception is that whoever has the most interesting stories, life, etc. is obviously going to be able to hold the attention of others as “The Most interesting Person in The World.”

There are almost as many different sales compensation plans as there are companies. Sandler Training President Chuck Terry shares 5 tips for motivating your sellers with the right compensation plan.

Welcome to the Blame Game 2017 Edition. We are living in, and, let’s face it have created, a society where EVERYTHING is someone’s fault.

Kid didn’t make the soccer team? Damn politics of youth sports.

Didn’t get the big promotion? The person who did was a weasel cheater.

Didn’t make the sale? I never really had a chance, the competition lied to get the business.

Those are not my words but the words from an infographic by INC. and Oracle based on their recent study of “What’s Keeping America’s Small and Medium Business Owners Awake at Night”.

Sales uncertainty came in right on the heels of talent, hiring, and retention as the top worries of American business leaders.

A whopping 48% of those surveyed reported that they were either “extremely” or “very” worried about maximizing sales channels.

A successful business depends on a successful sales pipeline, one that projects and produces accurate results. Unfortunately, many sales pipelines operate more like a clogged drain, with many of the same prospects, proposals, and “sure-fire” deals sitting in the same place month after month. These stagnant deals lead to inaccurate sales projections, and if left unmanaged, could result in lost jobs and even failure for the entire company. If your pipeline is clogged, follow these steps today to unclog your sales pipeline and get it flowing with accurate deals again.

By far and away the most common issues I find when working with firms who are struggling with making successful outbound prospecting calls are mental barriers. Call aversion isn’t tough to overcome with the right behaviors and the easiest fix of all is “The Wedding Proposal Fix.”

The first of every year signifies a new start for all of us. It is a banner month for gyms and the diet industry as millions of us pledge to get ourselves in better shape. In business we get to wipe the slate clean and start all over again with the promise of an even better year than the one that just passed. For most companies that might mean a renewed focus on growing at a faster rate than the previous year which coincidently might involve getting in better shape as well! Here are 3 essential elements to make sure you check off your list in order to give your firm the best chance at explosive growth in the New Year.

First things first let me just say that this is not an anti-donut campaign and I certainly have nothing against the basic concept of doing nice things for people. Now that we have established that premise I would like to tell you a story that illustrates the difference between relying solely on personal relationships to gain new business and balancing relationship building with functional sales skills.

In selling as in life most of our limitations are self imposed. What limiting beliefs are rattling around in your head that may be sabotaging consistent sales results?

Buyers habits are continuing to change and it is important to keep pace with the way we are selling to the changing buyer.

Colorado is an interesting market for many reasons and I have attempted to capture some of those reasons below. Here are seven key considerations and quick tips for companies selling in Colorado:

E-mail gets a bad rap. Most of us suffer from e-mail overload as reflected by recent statistics indicating we receive anywhere from 125 to 175 emails a day in our business inbox.

Those same studies also indicate that 94 of every 100 business emails are deleted or ignored. So why bother with email as a prospecting tool?

I believe one of the most underrated traits of highly successful sellers is good old, garden variety, curiosity. If you want to be the most interesting person in ANY room become the most interested person in the room. In other words, be curious.

 

What does a detective, an improv actor and a salesperson have in common? No, this isn't a setup for a joke but an exploration into the tricky world of active listening.

It isn't your Father's world of "Dial and Dump" cold calling any more. Today's business environment places a premium upon "authenticity" and "life skill" based sales process.

If you ask a room full of people to stand up if they love cold calling, I’m guessing no one will jump to their feet excitedly and shout, “I do!”

I like to say the only people who claim to love cold calling are sales managers and people that don’t actually have to do it. And it’s no wonder. Successful cold calling usually sits at below a 10% success rate, which means the other 90% of a sales rep’s "cold calling" day is filled with failure and rejection. That being said, cold calling is still an essential part of the prospecting strategy at many firms, and can be highly effective when done correctly. Here are two cold calling power strategies that will help maximize your chances for success.

The desire to be liked by your customers, taken to the extreme, can be damaging to your success. In this blog Sandler Training CEO Chuck Terry explores how a high strength need for approval can undermine the selling process.

In business today, the term “Rainmaker” is often used to refer to someone who is extremely gifted at developing new business for their professional practice. The term is an especially popular description as applied to partners of law firms that bring in lucrative new business and attract high end clientele to their practice.

The root of the reference can actually be found in American history. In Native American tradition, the Rainmaker was a special and powerful figure. The Rainmaker was called upon to help nature bring rainfall when it was most needed. The Rainmaker was most valuable to the tribe when fields were dry and rains were scarce. The same is true in business today. When the firm’s fields are dry and scarce, the new Rainmaker performs his magic to deliver the much needed “rainfall” of revenue required to nourish the business.

Chuck Terry shares his experience on leveraging social media with 3 secrets to success. He also shoots down the growing theory that interpersonal skills for sales professionals are not as important as they once were.

Many salespeople put far too much pressure on themselves to close every prospect they speak to. You might ask; “isn’t that their job?”

The answer would be; “absolutely NOT!”