Offshoring and the Failure of Selling

The good news is that manufacturing is returning to the U.S. The bad news is that much of it should never have left in the first place. The reason manufacturing left was not a failure of politics, economics, or business expertise. It was a failure of selling. By that I mean selling that not only educates, which is what 80 percent

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Are Great Questions Really Selling’s Secret Sauce?

Maybe. But here’s the fundamental question about questions: Why are so many of us so reluctant to ask them? Well, some of us can blame well-meaning mothers and fathers. They discouraged “prying” into other people’s lives as “rude.” But even in selling, whose baseline mantra is “Ask good questions,” we’ve found that salespeople and other business developers actually resist asking questions,

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The Best Business Gift Ever?

Creating value is perhaps the best gift you can give your customers, prospects, and colleagues. Even better, you can do it all year ’round during the sales process—you can provide value before making the sale. A particular set of communication skills is the key. Do you and your team have them? This time of year, especially, giving and receiving command a

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New Option for Analyzing Sales Performance

How valuable is a “DNA match” with top producers? Very, as it turns out, especially if coupled with the right training. In evaluating sales performance for clients, we’ve mainly use two ways. Now, we have a third! ONE: Previously in this column, we’ve endorsed examining historical sales data through the prism of ten-year moving totals and averages. This approach is valuable

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3 Hidden Sales Builders You (and Your Team) Need to Know

Top producers perform these “duties,” as they call them, to invest in the long-term success of their companies and their careers. We know that the very best salespeople are skilled at delivering value during the sales process. They know that’s fundamental to being a top producer. They know multiple ways to deliver value and how to use them effectively. We’ve identified 20 different

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Sales Are Down—Is Compensation to Blame?

Not necessarily—in fact, probably not. And neither is marketing. So, what is the likely cause? When a company’s sales fall short, sales managers and others—CEOs, presidents, owners, senior executives—often think first of the incentive program: Is it robust enough to be competitive? Next, they wonder whether marketing is generating poorly qualified leads: Are we opting for quantity instead of quality?

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Leveraging Time in Sales

What’s your number-one sales challenge? What obstacle, if you overcame it, would most help you increase sales? We ask that question when we survey participants before the first session of our consultative sales training course, FOCIS. The survey helps us understand how to tailor the course to the needs of any given company, class, or business developer. Specifically, the survey helps

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Vision, Sales Process Create New Customer Value

Brendan Kelly has become one of the most successful commercial/industrial tenant rep real estate brokers in the US. Yet his story, and that of his team, is not only about selling commercial real estate services successfully. It’s also about making higher value sales of any product or service in a business-to-business environment. And it illustrates how thinking differently about markets

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Where Do You Get Your New Business?

The who, what, when, where, why, and how that you need for a banner year. “Where do you get your new business?” is a question we’re asked a lot, especially since we teach business-to-business consultative selling skills and sales process development.  People expect us to have a good answer, and we do–“referrals.” Unfortunately, those same people usually aren’t satisfied with

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Scariest Sales Calls Ever!

“What is the worst sales call you have ever made, watched, or been subjected to?” A cringe-worthy question, to be sure, even scary this time of year. But it’s one worth spending a couple of uncomfortable minutes thinking about. OK . . . . Now, once you’ve zeroed in on the worst, or one of the worst, take a moment to

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