I just stumbled across this from Forrester Research. It’s appalling, and unfortunately way too true. I have argued since day one, that it’s not about the product or what you’re selling. It’s all about the customer and what the customer wants. Unfortunately, it appears sales people aren’t getting the message.
Notice the abysmal response percentages for the MOST CRITICAL elements of selling. Sales people can’t provide value if they can’t answer the questions above or if they are uninformed about the world their customer lives in.
If your sales organization isn’t providing this information to the team, they’re not getting the support they need. If sales people are part of the 70+ percent in the last 5 questions, they’re not sales people, they’re pitchmen and that’s a problem.
It’s time we start shifting how we send sales people out into the world. Imagine if we never taught them a thing about the product, only what it can do. I wonder how that would change things.