Salespeople are often despised.
Used car salespeople. Snake oil salespeople. Pest control or alarm system salespeople. If you’ve ever seen someone roll their eyes, shake their head in—even mock—disgust when you tell them what you do, then you’ve witnessed the disdain often associated with the sales profession. But where does this disdain originate?
You already know the answer to this question. Too many salespeople have relied on dishonesty and charm, instead of honest and helpful relationship-building to fatten their wallets. These tactics leave a trail of angry, distrustful customers in their wake. How great it would be if this behavior were limited to amateurs in B2C sales. Unfortunately, such is not the case.
Dishonest, unethical, short-sighted approaches to selling are in all parts of the B2B world. But not for long. Shifts in the size, composition, and expectations of the buying group are driving poor sales techniques toward inevitable extinction. These changes will require sales to overcome the negative stereotypes of their profession. On the plus side, those sales organizations that move first in changing their sleazy sales ways could gain a significant competitive advantage.
In her KnowledgeTree post, “The Shift From Sales Reps to Trusted Advisors,” author Shelley Cernel makes this observation:
“Sales reps are plagued by the negative connotations associated with their profession. By building that role as a trusted advisor, sales reps can differentiate themselves from other sales reps at competing companies who may not yet be fully on-board with this industry shift.”
What happens when B2B Sales stops thinking about saying whatever they must to close a sale and starts thinking about what their buyer needs to drive toward positive change? Of course, such a course correction would yield a better customer experience up front. But it would also set the foundation for a longer-term, consultative relationship that can extend beyond the initial sale and into future expansion opportunities.
As Cernel states, focusing on being a “trusted advisor” would also make an unbeatable, distinct competitive advantage over other slow-to-evolve sales teams—a difference that buyers are bound to notice.
In other words, caring is about to become the most critical weapon in B2B Sales’ arsenal.
To learn how Consensus helps sales teams become trusted advisors to buyers starting at first contact, click on the orange ‘Watch Demo’ button below.