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  • Writer's picturestevenrobertyoung

Sales Consultants: Their Claims, the Truth


Sales consultant in action #SSC

Sales consultants—where did they learn to sell? Are they graduates of their own programs or someone else's? What qualifies a sales consultant to consult? Do they have a business degree or a certificate from some course? Were they ever great salespeople who earned prestigious awards? The truth is, sales consultants are essentially salespeople themselves, ready to capitalize on your need for sales support. They promise easy success with their "proven systems," but often, they merely tailor a one-size-fits-all product to your business. Should you buy in?

 

Evaluating Sales Consultants

 

You might wonder if there's a difference between sales consultants. Sure, some have impressive websites, splashy videos, or claim to be featured in top publications. Others are adept at turning a small paragraph into a lengthy e-book filled with stock graphics. One common trait among sales consultants: they all boast about being authors of "best-seller" books.

 

The Real Value of Sales Consultants

 

The bottom line is you need sales support, and a sales consultant can be valuable—provided their advice goes beyond, “Just call the right prospect at the right time with the right message.” If it exists, the true value of a sales consultant resides in their having a solid methodology. Many companies struggle to grow sales due to a lack of a structured approach, making a complete methodology essential.

 

Not all sales consultants offer a comprehensive methodology; some only address parts of it, like process or strategy, which can lead to other problems. To get the support you may actually need, avoid patchwork solutions and look for a sales methodology. And remember, sales consultants are salespeople too. They aim to sell their services, even if they only offer one piece of the puzzle.

 

Understanding Sales Methodology

 

Achieving reliable success in sales requires a methodology based on four key foundational elements. These elements are the cornerstones of sales—strategy, process, structure, and management—and play a vital role in enabling sales performance that promotes business growth. At a minimum, a solid sales methodology involves:

 

1.       Strategy:

The approach and skills related to how sales are expected to occur.

Includes: Setting actionable goals and objectives, identifying target customers, and developing a compelling message/offer.

 

2.       Process:

The steps for effectively executing a strategy.

May include: Defining the steps for converting sales potential and establishing performance standards.

 

3.       Structure:

The support resources and organization of a sales operation.

Includes: Considering unique business factors (staff, goals, market position, etc.) and selecting necessary sales tools and resources.

 

4.       Management:

The practices and processes for tracking and safeguarding progress toward a goal.

Includes: Setting metrics and KPIs, determining schedules for assessments, and ensuring consistent sales efforts according to established standards.

 

By focusing on strategy, process, structure, and management, businesses can build and streamline their sales operations. Additionally, these fundamental elements enable salespeople to reach their full potential.

 

Embracing the Hard Work of Sales

 

The reality is: there are no shortcuts to excellence in sales. While it's tempting to believe that a clever social media post or email blast will boost sales, the reality is that avoiding the harder work necessary for operational success stems from a dislike of sales work. Instead of tweeting, practice sales techniques. Instead of emailing, make phone calls. Don't just manage—actively participate in developing new sales strategies, systematizing operations, increasing productivity, and enhancing synergy among the four cornerstones of sales.

 

Conclusion

 

To improve sales, understand the nature of sales work and seek a comprehensive sales methodology. Remember, a sales consultant is a salesperson, not necessarily a sales expert. The effectiveness of a sales consultant depends on their ability to deliver advice that is specific to your business and needs. Look for consultants whose direction is rooted in a comprehensive methodology that is relevant to your business. Collaborating with consultants who prioritize the cornerstones of sales can elevate your sales performance, help you overcome operational challenges, and achieve sustainable growth in your business.

 

You can increase sales and enjoy selling much more by knowing what success requires, developing your skills, and having a comprehensive plan specific to the uniqueness of your business.


 

Copyright © 2024 Steven Robert Young.  All rights reserved.



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