Guest Post: Steve McNally, McNally Consulting
I have a new car, and it has some wonderful features on it, really clever stuff to make driving safer and easier. You’ve probably seen some of these types of new offerings – the cars that park themselves and have all kinds of new voice-activated functionality and push-button starts.
While all that is interesting, my new car has one specific feature that I wish I possessed, and specifically, I wish I had it for my sales career. That’s an odd statement to be sure – implying that a car knows how to sell. It’d put fear into the hearts of used-car salespeople all over. Obviously the feature it has isn’t designed to for selling, rather it’s designed to see things that the operator doesn’t. The car has a blind-spot, side-looking radar capability. It tells the driver visually and audibly when it isn’t safe to change lanes, and this very handy especially when the driver doesn’t see the other vehicle.
The car uses technology to gain a perception advantage over what people can see, and perception is pretty important when you’re driving. I’d suggest it’s also important in sales. When we sell we tend to focus on what we know, or need to find out. There are times when we don’t see the other things going on around us, and our focus is a disservice to our skills. If you don’t think this is true, take this little test – I certainly failed the first time I saw it, and I’m guessing you may as well.
So why don’t we see what should be obvious ? The answers are many, but I’ll put forth that in a sales campaign what we’re doing is moving as quickly as we feel comfortable towards an outcome that favours us. We don’t take our eyes off of the players and issues we’ve identified as important, and see what is really going on.
There is good news here though – and it also comes in the form of assistive technology. While the automobile offers blind-spot radar to help me drive, in a sales sense I can use something like The TAS Group‘s Dealmaker, and invoke the Coach Me functionality. I’ve been around this software for almost six years, and it doesn’t ‘teach me’ to sell, but it still helps me see the aspects in my sales campaign that I’m not overtly paying attention to – then I can proactively deal with issues before they kill me. It highlights vulnerabilities and with it I know that I can move faster and safer to accomplish what needs to be done.
The nature of my work is to help companies deploy this solution to enhance their own sales efforts and in the very many engagements I’ve had, I have never come across a single individual that possesses this 360 degree perception in sales – that’s to be expected. After all, none of us come with blind-spot radar as standard equipment.