Sales is stuck in the dark ages
Sales is in the dark ages. Today. it's primarily learned as an apprenticeship. Similar to an apprenticeship to a blacksmith. If you asked leaders in the space they'd each tell you a different path on how they picked up the craft. They learned it from someone they worked with and then honed their skills over time. Adapting it to fit them like a finely tailored suit.
Thousands of miles on the road with their sales managers. Each mile driven another minute of high quality face to face conversation. When I was in High School I took up a flyer that called for young students to earn a bit of summer cash. I showed up in an ill-fitting suit and a wiry frame. Once inside I sat down alongside fifteen or twenty other young high school and junior college students. The office manager, a franchisee, ran through a presentation of the company and the potential opportunity. We had the option to stay or go.
My mother wasn’t going to pick me up for another hour. I decided, or rather was forced, to stay. He walked through how much money we could earn if we committed ourselves. I really wanted to free myself from the yoke of parental allowance. From then on I would come to the training office one hour a week.
I’ve attended a handful of training programs. Sandler and Miller Hieman were inspiring. If you ask other sellers they might tell you they’ve attended Spin or that they’ve just finished reading the Challenger Sale.
They adopted, then adapted.
They were taught, then they tailored.
Either way they likely implemented a sizable percentage of the program and molded the teachings to fit. A finely tailored custom suit. From my vantage point as a revenue leader, I see this apprenticeship format as a rather inefficient method of developing core talent in a necessary profession. Now where is this pain there is also opportunity. I’m betting that my company and my team will firmly reside on the right hand side of the bell curve.
If you had a room full of sellers and told each person to close their eyes. Then you asked whoever believed they were above the average to raise their hand. Not a single person would keep their hand down. That simply cannot be true. The law of the jungle demands it.
So what’s up with sales, marketing, sales operations, revenue operation, marketing operations? Why are we so behind the curve?
Lawyers go to law school.
Engineers get certified.
Physicians pass their boards.
Couldn't we as revenue focused practitioners do the same?
More to come in another post.