One of the most frequent questions we get from clients has to do with the second most important finding on Objective Management Group's (OMG) sales and sales management evaluations. "This is one of my top salespeople - how can she possibly lack Desire for sales success?"
It's a great question and I hope to explain it fully here.
First, I'll answer the question that you formed with my opening statement. "What is the most important finding? It's Commitment for sales success.
Next, we'll set the stage. We are talking about this issue in the context of an existing salesperson. If the finding of Lack of Desire was for a salesperson who was failing, a client would say, "Well, that explains it." Not really. Their sales competencies and Sales DNA will explain lack of performance. But the lack of Desire does tell us that the underachieving salesperson is unlikely to improve due to a lack of incentive to change. However, when a top-performing salesperson lacks Desire, clients don't know what to make of it. They always wonder, "How could that be?" Well, it's fairly simple how that could be. In most cases, it's as simple as something must have changed.
I'll give you an example. This week, I spent two days training a room full of experts from the sales training space. These experts are some of the 150 or so who provide OMG's evaluations and assessments to clients. This particular group was made up of veterans - sales experts who have been with OMG for as long as 25 years, so I can't really do sales or product training with this group. Instead, we work on how they grow, improve, and get to the next level. These sales experts are VERY successful, yet if we were to evaluate them, I'm certain that based on what I heard in the room this week, we would see Lack of Desire for most of them.
As a group, they were guilty of taking their foot off the gas. They lost their edge. Sure, they still generate a lot of business and are still successful, but the edge that got them there, the intensity that kept them there, and the fire that burned hot within them, was more like a pilot light these days. My job then, was to reignite that fire while they were with me.
So this group presents a terrific example of top-performers who lack desire. It simply means that the desire that got them there isn't there anymore, but it doesn't mean that they will no longer be successful.
One of the attendees at this week's training directed me to a video by ET, the hip-hop preacher. This short video is a great example of what strong Desire truly is. Check it out here, but you might want to skip the ad at the beginning.
When a candidate for a sales position lacks Desire, there are no questions. Clients simply do not pursue candidates who lack either Desire or Commitment. Why hire a new salesperson with that issue?
I hope that you better understand why Desire for success in sales:
- is so crucial in a new salesperson;
- explains why an underperforming salesperson will not improve; and
- can so easily wane in a top-performing salesperson after years of success.
Can you personally feel how your own Desire for success in sales, sales management, sales leadership, or executive leadership has intensified or waned over the course of your career?
Image from Eric Thomas