Latest Debate Had Some Great Sales Leadership Examples

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Thu, Dec 17, 2015 @ 07:12 AM

carly.jpg

You didn't need to watch too much of the debate or watch for too long before hearing some bizarre examples of what some of the GOP candidates would do if they were elected as the Chief Leader of the United States.  Carly Fiorina doubled down and said she simply would not talk to world leaders, like Vladimir Putin, until she could talk to him from a position of strength.  Chris Christie said he would draw a line in the sand and if Putin crossed it with one of his war planes, Christie would shoot it down.  Trump said he would kill the families of terrorists.  Rand Paul was smug - he knows more than anyone else on the stage and has known it for longer.  Cruz and Rubio debated details of the law.  Carson said the right things - all night - but has very little in the way of outward presence.  He isn't animated enough, passionate enough, or dynamic enough to be the Chief Leader.  Jeb Bush stumbled.  So out of this cast of characters, who was the "leader" who didn't say the wrong thing?I believe that it was Chris Christie with his line in the sand.  He's talking about setting clear expectations and holding accountable those who didn't meet those expectations.  Trump was talking about that too, but Trump's KPI is not within the law!  Christie's line in the sand is a no-fly zone in Syria - and a violation would be a very reasonable KPI to which every country could and should be held accountable.

In other news, today, Rapid Learning Institute sponsored two presentations where I commented on the hidden reasons why your next sales candidate might be a bust.  Both sessions were a big hit!  They posted this article which talked about the takeaways from the first session. 

Evan Carmichael, of EvanCarmichael.com, a great site for entrepreneurs, named me one of the Top 100 Leadership Experts to follow on Twitter, coming in at #59.

Last week, I posted the top 5 Articles from my blog in 2015.  Readers voted and the winner is:  Rebuttal to What Elite Salespeople Do Differently 

This relatively short and simple article turned into the most lively online debate that I have witnessed in the 10 plus years of authoring this blog and I was very proud of all the supporters who took the time to write, explain their positions, and set the record straight.  Thank you all for reading in 2015.

Finally, TopSalesWorld.com is holding their annual Top Sales & Marketing Awards for 2015.  This year I am proud to be nominated and be a finalist in 7 categories:

  1. Top Sales and Marketing Article
  2. Top Sales and Marketing Blog Post
  3. Top Sales and Marketing Blog
  4. Top Sales and Marketing eBook
  5. Top Sales and Marketing Webinar
  6. Top Sales Assessment Tool (Objective Management Group/OMG)
  7. Top Sales and Marketing Thought Leader

The winners will be announced in the December 22 issue of Top Sales Magazine. If you don't subscribe (it's free) you can subscribe here.

Topics: Dave Kurlan, sales leadership, topsalesworld, chris christie, GOP and sales, Evan Carmichael, Donald Trump, Carly Fiorina

The One Thing Most Salespeople Are Unable to Do

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Mon, Oct 27, 2014 @ 06:10 AM

the-one-thing-salespeople-can't-do

Can you guess what it is - the one thing most salespeople are unable to do?

Based on what I most frequently write about, you might think that it would be consultative selling, but that's not it.  You might also guess that it's the sales equivalent of eating right - not doing demos and presentations so early in the sales process. But that's not it either.

However, there really is one thing that all but the most elite salespeople are unable to do.  It is partly a result of their inability to sell consultatively while continuing to demo, present, quote and propose too early.  Can you guess what it is now?

Most salespeople can talk about their value proposition, and they can certainly add something of value, but they are unable to provide value - enough value so that their prospects will pay more to do business with them.  I'm not just talking about salespeople selling value, I'm talking about salespeople being the value!

How huge is this problem and how hot is this topic right now?

In just the past week, it has been the host's topic of choice on 2 radio shows on which I was the guest, the topic of 2 articles I was asked to write, the topic of two keynotes I was asked to give, and the topic of an upcoming presentation my team will conduct (you're invited!) later this month.  Is this a hot topic or what?

The inability to sell value is nothing new though...it has been going on for decades.  What's different now is that so many people care so much about it.  Why do you suppose that it's suddenly so important?

[Insert your answer in the comments below.]  I'll give you my answer right here.

Only one company in each product category can be the low price leader and they have to sell shit-loads of their stuff to make any money.  Everyone else must fight for the business that may not go to the low price leader.  Some try to get the business by competing on price, while others try to get the business by attempting to justify a higher price.  That's where it's essential for companies and their salespeople to sell value.  And most aren't very good at it.  So companies are getting fed up with making very short money on the business they are winning, while losing a much larger number of opportunities than they care to admit.  For most, this is a losing battle that can't continue.  Therefore, one of three things will occur:

  1. They will give up, shut the doors, and go away.
  2. They will give in, lower their prices, and try to make it up on volume.
  3. They will give us (or someone else) a call and get some help selling value.

If only it was that easy.

There are many reasons why salespeople aren't able to sell value.  The categories include, but aren't limited to:

  • Lack of alignment on Philosophy,
  • Unclear, ineffective and/or inconsistent Strategy,
  • Useless and ineffective Tactics,
  • The mission can't be supported by salespeople's Sales DNA,
  • Salespeople have Sales Skill Gaps, and/or
  • The Sales Process does not support and/or reinforce a value sale.

I don't have the space to write in detail about each of these categories in this article, but there are some things you can do that will help:

Buyers will continue to drive prices down until salespeople learn how to stop it, or companies start dropping like flies.  The time has come to stop the squeezing.  Won't you join me in putting an end to the madness?

Topics: Dave Kurlan, Consultative Selling, selling value, overcoming price objections, value selling,, Evan Carmichael

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About Dave

Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Sales Thought Leader.  Dave Kurlan's Understanding the Sales Force Blog earned a medal for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award for six consecutive years. This article earned a Bronze Medal for Top Sales Blog post in 2016 and this one for 2017. Read more about Dave.

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