Searching For The "Natural Born" Seller?
By Wayne Ens
Are great salespeople born or are the top performers groomed and trained to be the best at their craft? It's an age-old question that's bound to spark debate and a wide variety of opinions.
But increasingly, the hue and cry of struggling sales managers is, "Where are the good salespeople?" or "How do I find good salespeople?"
My experience has been that top performers are not "born" that way. They may be born with the right attitude and work ethic, but the skills that separate them from those who fail at selling are more acquired than inherent.
In an industry as complex and rapidly evolving as media sales, it boggles my mind to think that many people who have been hired with the right attitude and work ethic, are deemed "failures" in a relatively short period.
When we're selling advertising, we'll tell our advertisers that the desire for instant gratification is one of the causes of advertising failure, yet we often expect a return on our investment in salespeople in 120 days, 90 days, or even less.
Advertising sales is a profession. Other professions and trades give their recruits years to learn the tricks to the trade. A carpenter who hammers nails in blanks can take four years to serve their apprenticeship, and lawyers and doctors require 10 years of education and interning before they are recognized as practicing professionals.
Our profession is no less complex.
For example, to master something as apparently simple as making a presentation to a locally owned and operated business we must:
-- Get past the gatekeepers and make an appointment.
-- Complete a CNA (Customer Needs Analysis) or SWOT Analysis (Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats).
-- Learn the strengths and weaknesses of our various competitors.
-- Understand how to communicate with various buyer styles.
-- Learn and identify the correct creative and scheduling strategies for each client.
-- Create a customer-focused presentation that stands out from all of the other presentations the prospect sees.
-- Learn how to handle objections, negotiate, and close.
I could make the list much longer, but you get the point. Everything our sales professionals do requires knowledge, preparation, follow-up, and an ever-changing skill set that takes time to master.
In case you haven't noticed, it's a lot tougher to sell radio today than it was when most radio sales managers began their careers. Most sales managers only had to compete against newspapers, yellow pages, and perhaps television during their formative years.
And most local advertisers believed they had to advertise.
Today, the appeal of free exposure on "earned media" over paid advertising is luring many away from paid advertising altogether.
Today, new recruits face all of the same traditional competitors their managers faced, plus shiny new players in search engines, online directories, Web malls, social media, daily deal sites, Web designers, mobile apps, and more.
If you are having difficulty finding and keeping good people, don't automatically blame your recruiting skills. More often than not, the cause of new-recruit turnover or perceived failure is not in the raw material you acquired, but rather in the tools and time you didn't invest in polishing that raw material.
Ask yourself: "Is it reasonable to pit my new recruit against a seasoned competitor with the time and training I've given them?" When they hit the street, are they equipped to compete against someone with the same experience and skills you have?
If not, you are destined to have the continuing high costs of sales rep turnover, and the accompanying faltering sales.
I once heard a manager say, "What if I make an investment in time and training for a new recruit and they leave my company?" My answer was, "What if you don't invest in creating better salespeople and they stay with the company?"
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Note: US Representative NANCY Pelosi and some fellow democrats want to take away the freedom of speech of the business and corporated world. Is there anyone in this country not affected by such a move, and even if they weren't I believe in the US Constitution as it stands. We need to keep the freedom of speech across the board and to vote her and her colleagues out of office. What Nancy Pelosi and colleagues in the US House of Reps represents appears to have something to do with not only the loss of the freedom of speech, that is the right of American businessmen to defend themselves against corrupt moves made by members of the US Senate and House, but also what I perceive to be connections to problem areas such as the presence of Mexican cops, officials and perhaps executioners in this country and what this particular symptom appears to have to do with the health of the American Congress, also border issues, appropriations for the US Military such as when the Obama administration chose to cut 500 billion back the past several months, and others where Pelosi and Democrats and others in the US House are trying to write legislation that mirrors what I believe are questionable moves by people in the US Senate such as Senator Harry Reed. America cannot defend itself against the government if we allow people like Pelosi and Reed to take away our right to speech by virtue of the fact that they may perceive that they have a very real problem with this country as politicians, that is America's suspicion regarding their motives and history, and therefore feeling that they need the loss of the American right to freedom of speech in order to survive. MIchael .....Next: A HOUSE DIVIDED AGAINST ITSELF WITH COMMENTS:
Note: The following information was given me anonymously during a visit to Ft Stockton, Tx in Pecos County in reference to the conduct of employees at the Lynaugh Unit, part of the Texas Dept of Corrections facility, and while this report appears to have been false, I would like to state that there is reason to believe that the content of the report is consistent with the political objectives of some members of the US Congress and could conceivably be implemented if the public does not focus on their agenda. Tip: The US Congress and their Criminal Justice Policy: TDC Lynaugh Unit in Ft Stockton, Tx. This unit appears to be operating in the following manner with support from Gov Perry and the US Congress. Persons being interogated in the county jail and involving severe and life threatening paddlings and torture, which some say could involve virtually anything and thereby leave the inmates permanently disfigured or dead even upon receiving the first strike of a paddle on the bare buttocks and done in such a manner that causes a shock to the brain and spinal cord. Persons being interrogated there in the manner or method of A through Z questioning that may or may not have anything to do with the reason they are there, meant to stir up information about anything you ever did wrong, and for which resistance thereof to any question will result in a probably severe paddling, the first strike thereof which could cause your death could via this process be found guilty by the interrogator and without the benefit of a jury will be transported to a state prison facility for additional interrogations, beatings, torture and if found to be related to the interrogation the prospect of being executed. Executions at the Lynaugh Unit are understood to involve and supported by the US Congresss hidden written policy, which they appear to be subjecting to state control at least via unofficial comments, could involve being hung by the neck until dead, or the electric chair at high voltage, or beaten to death with a club. The method chosen depends on the Governor whom is understood to never have resinded the decision to execute anyone, but may have stalled it long enough to get more information via interrogation or to step up the date. That is it, and Congress or the President of the Governor refuse so far to discuss these policies with anyone. It is alledged that thousands of young women may be being beaten to death in jails across the US to date for petty crimes via this process. Also Congress is understood to have written laws that enable some courts to send defendant to prisons of a private or secret status even abroad as long as the defintion of their facilities is consistent with the intent to house an inmate. This process could enable our government to rid themselves of political opposition by placing defendants in prisons in other countries whom practice brutal methods of interrogation that could ultimately lead the inmate to being horrifically executed. The cost of this unwritten or hidden policy is $ 174, 000 to 230,000 per member of Congress per year, and then there are the cost of the loss of lifes, businesses and the like for their defendants. Also in
|- michael duerksen|
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