3 Reasons Sales Leaders Are Losing Their Jobs | Braintrust 101
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3 Reasons Sales Leaders Are Losing Their Jobs

3 Reasons Sales Leaders Are Losing Their Jobs

When I was back in corporate America, I remember moving from one role to the next in order to learn as much as possible and “climb” my way up the corporate ladder. I’d move from the field to marketing, to sales management, back to marketing, then to a higher level of sales leadership, all the while keeping my eye on the dream prize, Executive Vice President of Sales. One might think that a position of such importance and stature would be filled by the greatest minds in our industry and would very seldom come open. To my encouragement, and at the time naivety, that position seemed to open up every couple of years. As I got closer to the top of the pyramid, I began to notice the revolving trend. I began to ask what was causing the consistent turnover in that position. The answers I received were clouded and cloaked in politics, but always came down to the same three reasons:

 

1.  Not enough revenue growth

2. Not enough revenue growth

3. Not enough revenue growth

 

Were there other reasons, like managing budgets and developing better leaders? Yes, of course. But, ultimately, it always came down to one thing: not enough revenue growth.

 

In today’s landscape, CEOs and Boards of Directors are increasingly impatient for sales performance and results. The proverbial hatchet seems to fall most easily on the head of sales, regardless of the environment or extenuating circumstances.

 

As a result of this pressure to succeed, disparate and desperate attempts to solve the sales problem lead to cobbled-together solutions.

 

If we only had better leads…

 

If we only had a better CRM…

 

If we only had a more competitive pricing strategy…

 

If we only had better technology in the hands of our salespeople…

 

If we only had better product training…

 

If we only had better frontline managers who knew how to hold people accountable…

 

And on and on…

 

 

While these issues may be real and need solving, they aren’t the primary problem.

 

The real problem lies in your sales team’s inability to create true connection, differentiate themselves and your company, and bring industry-relevant insight into the customer conversation.

 

In other words, the problem is communication. Period. If your salespeople could create trust, educate the buyer around their unrecognized needs, and articulate a buying vision focused on a differentiated solution, you would never miss quota again. Yet…

 

Only 13% of buyers believe a typical sales rep understands their business issues and can articulate how to solve them. And…

 

89% of meetings between your salespeople and prospects are deemed failures (Forrester Research).

 

As you can see, there is no CRM, product training, pricing strategy change, or enhanced technology solution that can help your sales reps have a more productive conversation with your prospects. The harsh reality is that your sales reps’ ability to communicate effectively will help you hit your corporate growth number, or their inability to communicate will force you to hit the executive recruiter’s website with a fresh resume.

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