Dave Brock

Customers Are Irresponsible When They Don’t Answer Our Prospecting Calls!

I’m following a fascinating discussion in LinkedIn. You should read it here. The author makes a fair point that executives must constantly look for opportunities to learn, improve, and grow their businesses. He poses the premise they should do this by answering every prospecting call they get–since sales people presenting their solutions [...]

“Is It OK To Manipulate For Good Purposes?”

James Muir published an outstanding post, “Is it ok to manipulate clients for their own good?” It’s a must read. Basically, James describes a conversation with a sales person who feels it’s OK to manipulate and pressure a customer because that sales person knows how happy the customer will be with the solution. Most of you [...]

Who Am I Talking To?

I suppose I’m being naive. I had always thought “social platforms,” were a way that we could connect and engage with each other. While they wouldn’t replace face to face and personal connections, they might expand our relationships. They would enable us to expand our relationships–though they wouldn’t be close, with people [...]

The New World Of Co-Opetition

The relationships we establish, in business, are very complex and constantly changing. We have relationships with colleagues. At some point, we or colleagues may choose to go work someplace else–even our competition. We don’t, at least I haven’t, stopped those relationships. Most of the time, there is intense competition–I want to beat them, [...]

Sales—Science Or Art?

Recently, I read an article about sales being more science than art.  Perhaps, I was a little unfair in my comments, but the author’s premises were flawed. I think we want to see sales being more like science because of what we perceive as the predictability and certainty that seems to exist in science.  We want to [...]

“Customer Propensity To Buy”

For those people deep into analytics and understanding (usually) consumer buying behaviors, the concept of Propensity To Buy, is not new. It’s been around for decades. Propensity to buy is simply about determining the liklihood of a customer buying something. We use it in developing our websites, our web ad strategies, our marketing programs, [...]

Great Selling Is “Habit Forming!”

I’m sure you’ve experienced something that gives you a “rush.” It’s when, all of a sudden, everything just falls into place, everything is working as it should, it seems effortless. Sometimes we experience it in sports. For example, when I’m riding, I get it a groove, I’m in a paceline, my pedal stroke is [...]

Do We Know How To Do “Needs Discovery/Analysis?”

My good friend, Brian MacIver, reminded me of the struggle sales people have in doing “Needs Analysis.” I suspect there are a lot of reasons. Much is simply the fact that “we” typically get involved in the customer buying process very late. Most data is now showing customers may be 70% or more through their buying [...]

Begin With The End In Mind

Stephen Covey’s famous 2nd Habit is: “Begin with the end in mind!” It’s great advice for most things, but stunning advice as we think about our deal/opportunity strategies. Sadly, too few sales people leverage this habit/principle effectively. The immediate reaction to this will be, “Dave, you’re crazy, sales people always do this, they are focused [...]

How Do We Improve Forecast Accuracy?

Yesterday, I wrote, Forecast Accuracy, Again. It’s an important foundation to this article. It focuses on why we need forecast accuracy, which may be different from what most sales leaders think. I’ve actually become very accurate forecasting when and how this topic comes up. There are two peak periods. The first is [...]

Forecast Accuracy—Again

I’ve come to learn about a seasonality effect on queries I get on Forecast Accuracy. We’re mid way through the second calendar quarter of the year. Executives are seeing they missed the number in the first quarter, we’re now midway through the second quarter and they are starting to worry. For some with XaaS [...]

Changing “Sales Habits”

We know how difficult it is to change our personal habits. For example, at the start of every new year, we make a resolution to lose weight and get fit. We may go so far as to join the gym, sign up for a class. It lasts for a few weeks, then [...]

What Problem Is Your Customer Really Trying To Solve?

The majority of sales people, unfortunately are just peddlers—walking, talking brochures. Needless to say, customers are finding digital sources of information much more useful than talking to those sales people. The data consistently shows customers limit contact with these types of sales people to the very end of the buying process. Some few sales [...]

Fear Of Failure

As sales people and leaders, we have an interesting relationship with failure. We are in an intensely competitive profession. Our customers are and should be evaluating alternatives. In any buying decision, there will only be one supplier selected, with the others losing. As good as any of us are, we all fail! Like any other human [...]

What’s Next? What’s Your Deal Strategy?

In any given year, I may be involved in doing 100’s of deal or opportunity reviews. Inevitably, I end up asking many of the same questions: What are the most important things the customer needs to do next in moving through their buying process?How will you help them?What are the next most critical things you [...]

Sales Results: Principles Versus Techniques/Tactics

How do we create sustained results as sales professionals? After all, our jobs are: Create differentiated value with our customers.Execute our company business strategies with our customers.Achieve/exceed our goals and objectives. There are thousands of “experts” providing advice to sales people on how to best do our jobs. Thousands of posts and books, give the [...]

Compressing Our Customer’s Buying Process

I read a post about influencing and accelerating our customers’ buying decisions. The author thought trying to acclerate or “move in” the buying decision was wrong. I don’t disagree–usually, our motives for trying to do this is getting an order and making out numbers. Toward the end of a month or quarter, managers seem [...]

Focusing On The “Mobilizer” Is Not Enough!

We know in complex B2B buying decisions, there are over 10 people involved in making the decision. There are many others who influence this group, and it only takes 1 person to veto a buying decision. Ideally, we have at least one “Mobilizer,” some one within the buying group that is proactively advocating for our [...]

“The Customer Is Incompetent!”

In the past week, I’ve participated in two reviews where the sales person has made the statement about some individual in the buying group, “So and so is incompetent…..” One wanted to hammer home the fact by saying, “I spoke to a friend selling other products to the same company, he agrees….So and So [...]

Send In The “Bots”

AI, “Bots” and related technologies can do a lot to help improve our effectiveness and efficiency. The technology enables us to unload mundane tasks, both making us more effective and efficient. And, of course, there are those that enable the users to do terrible things. We hear reports, almost daily, of concerted efforts to [...]

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