In business, some problems are more peculiar than others, and often the cause of such issues is easily fixed, but not always easy to detect. At least this was what one of our sales training specialists found with a client we worked with last year
A leading national consumer goods distributor was able to open-up an unfocused problem that a company suffers from their sales team. Their sales team seemed to have success with small clients but were unable to win many big accounts. As a result, most of their sales were from small clients, and their cost of sales was rising.
The senior management had completed a cause and effect analysis, but the root cause still eluded them. Based on this they asked our sales training specialists for an ‘outsider’s eye’ to review their whole sales process to get to the root of the problem.
This assessment made things crystal clear, and we found that apart from inferior questioning skills, they had missed something elementary: poor presentation skills. As was the norm of this industry, big clients were given a presentation as part of the initial sales pitch. A good impression meant an opportunity to take the bid further; a poor presentation prematurely ended the chance.
With this experience of having dilemmas acquiring sales, we have come up with the prominent outcomes that a company can suffer from.
What happens when this is the case?
- Full potentialities cannot be realised – Even if they are 100% loyal to your business, small clients can provide you with only so much activity. If your portfolio doesn’t include a mix of large and small clients, your costs of sales and supply will continue to escalate, and profits diminish.
- Poor presentation skills lead to poor conversion rates – Hard as your sales team tries, if they fail to break into big accounts, slowly but surely their confidence starts to erode. So much so that they lose hope of converting a more significant opportunity and continue to spend their time with smaller accounts. This, in turn, becomes a decreasing spiral of missed sales opportunities and declining margins.
- Fewer opportunities to grow – Employees fail to move ahead professionally as career opportunities in a stagnant or slow-growing company become few and far between.
In doing this in-depth study about how sales team acquires sales, detecting the problem is not only the remedy that we can get but also, how to avoid and solve sales problems when they arise.
How to solve this issue?
A turnaround is possible, mainly if you use professional and experienced sales training specialists to guide you. In this case, solving the issue was more comfortable than finding it. We introduced a customised sales training course in Sydney and Melbourne, tailored to their business, customers and products, (not an off the shelf, by the standard course’).
These ‘In-house’ professional sales training courses helped their team to learn and master the necessary presentation skills to improve sales, which, while not difficult to determine and master, their importance had been taken far too lightly. Excellent presentation skills not only position your team professionally but also show your customers what you can do for them, relative to their specific needs