How To Ground Our Sales Teams in Business Acumen
While a salesperson makes their money off selling and getting commissions, it can be hard to take away from their precious time of prospecting and calling. So how do we ground them in business acumen skills? It’s important to be quick and precise when teaching your teams, so I have three pieces of advice to help you be successful in this process.
1. Make sure it’s relevant. Ensure that what you are teaching, aligns with your sales team's role and tasks. Focus on teaching them the principles that they can use in their day-to-day tasks. Throughout the training, it is so important to customize the course for your company and industry, as well as for the company and industry of your prospects. Help your sales team be very focused on building a foundation that aligns not only with their own company but their customers as well.
2. Listening to and understanding your CEO's statements are an important part of understanding the big picture of their organization. Though these statements can feel long and happen frequently, they will provide your team with vital information to help align the strategies of the organization and the sales teams. Some questions to answer include:
How are the executive's goals and decisions aligned with the sales process?
Which direction is the company heading?
What is our strategy?
What can our product do for you?
Even take it a step further. Connect the 5 drivers to these statements and quarterly calls, it will help you better understand what the true focus of the C-suite is. Consider how your executive team looks at:
3. Make your sales team consultants. Help them understand the basic fundamentals of business, so they are able to have business conversations with higher-level individuals using the metrics that are important to them. If they’re well rounded in business ideas, it is easy to show the prospects how beneficial the product can be. This can help them genuinely understand the benefits it will have to the overall success of the company. With the knowledge that this will positively impact the company's bottom line, your team will be confident when speaking to anyone, from executives to CEO's. You’re providing a solution for them. So the skills of business acumen are basic fundamentals of business but are also critical to understand in order to have those conversations with higher-level individuals.
Let me give you an example...
If you could sell $100,000 more or you could cut $100,000 in expenses, which would add more to the bottom line?
Without business acumen skills, you could probably make a reasonable guess as to which would be more beneficial, but WHY is it beneficial. In order to answer this question, you need to understand profit margins, and how to calculate that from the expense report. You need to understand expenses, and how they add to the bottom line. To be able to understand that as a salesperson, to have a product that can influence that, and be able to articulate that to your customer, there is no sales negotiation that needs to take place. The only way you can get there is by building that foundation of business acumen, and understanding these key financial indicators that a company is using to make decisions. We want to teach you all of the skills and logistics that your CEO, and your customer's CEO, are looking at in order to help you contribute to the overall health of the organization.
Not only do we want your business to succeed, but we also want you to succeed too. We want you to find success in your careers, in your conversations, and in your day-to-day jobs. This is why we teach business acumen.
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