Companies that excel at sales growth are tightly focused on developing the talent they need by understanding how sales reps really work.
With as much as half of a company’s value creation resting with the sales force, sales-team effectiveness is crucial for growth. In fact, our research shows that the sales experience is one of the top drivers in customers’ purchasing decisions. And best practice has revealed that companies focus as much on the rep experience as on the customer experience.
Realizing that value, however, has become a lot harder. The sales landscape is more unpredictable and studded with multiple influencers, channels and buying options. Digitization is changing buyer behaviors and leading to more complex sales activities. Guiding decision makers through all the nuances and considerations requires sellers to demonstrate deep subject-matter expertise and the ability to quickly customize a message to each customer.
These challenges call for a new set of sales skills, training, and tools. Companies are having trouble filling that void, however, because many of them lack the means to identify and cultivate the skills they need. Performance can vary by as much as six to seven times between top- and bottom-tier sellers, yet few organizations have metrics that show why. As a result, hiring choices are often based on gut feelings, while development and training often default to methods that have been in place for years.
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