In my twenties, I worked in the fashion industry; aka the “rag business” or the “schmatta business.” It was a fun and glamorous career- especially when you are young, want to make big money, party a lot, never wear the same thing twice and be the first to know about the new colors eight months before everyone else.
I didn’t want to be in sales, I wanted to be in the trend business working for a company that specialized in fashion color trends. I wanted to travel to Milan, Tokyo, Paris and come back with color trends 12-18 months before the stores had them. Trends happen as a response to what is happening economically, politically, environmentally, and socially. But like most trends, some can be the flavor du jour and quickly be replaced by the next craze.
Today, everyone gathered in Boston for the Sales 2.0 Conference and I’m sorting through bits and pieces of what was said from Mike Damphousse’s recap of opening remarks to Dream Simplicity’s video interviews. When I first attended the 2007 Sales 2.0 Conference in San Francisco , I must admit, I thought this was a trend. I remember everyone walking around the Regis Hotel wondering what Sales 2.0 was all about. It looked cool, hip, fast-moving and hey, if David Thompson, CEO of Genius was involved, it was a sure winner.
Fast forward to 2010 and today’s Sales 2.0 Conference is all about changing sales behavior by incorporating social intelligence with Web 2.0 technology and responding to the new normal- the Customer 2.0. My requests for training comes from Inside Sales Managers who read my book and realize their teams have been hanging out in the Sales 1.0 zone and need to quickly press refresh and upgrade their skills to Sales 2.0. They admit they thought it was hype but realize they can no longer survive unless they transform some fundamental ways of selling.