Research has proved that influence is the foundation of selling. It is what inspires others to take an idea seriously and act on it. Information alone will rarely persuade someone to take action. (If it could, then salespeople would be unnecessary.) Rather, what moves people is how that information is presented and who presents it to them. As neuroscientist Gregory Berns explains, “A person can have the greatest idea in the world—completely different and novel—but if that person can’t convince enough other people, it doesn’t matter.” Source: Hoffeld, David. The Science of Selling (pp. 4-5). Penguin Publishing Group.
Growth mindset is the belief that intelligence can be developed. It is contrasted with a fixed mindset: the belief that intelligence is a fixed trait that is set in stone at birth. A fixed or growth mindset may shape adaptive behaviors, acceptance of virtual selling tools, confidence recovery following failures, as well as the effectiveness of product marketing campaigns. People with a fixed mindset are more likely to seek products and brands in line with their goals to burnish their self-image and demonstrate their positive qualities, while people with a growth mindset seek products that help them pursue their goals to improve and learn new things.(Dweck, 2018)
During the current times the business world needs a salesforce that is on the frontline talking to customers, caring for them and creatively carving out solutions that will keep their lights on. It is about digitally enabling them to educate customers through stories and other knowledge resources that will make a difference.
There are 3 reasons why the world needs knowledgeable sales people during the pandemic and in recovery phase:
- One, they are closest to the customer needs and empowering them through tools and resources will help them to collaborate and engage with customers to make them successful.
- Two, sales people create demand in a recessionary economy through events, promotions and new offerings.
- Three, they stimulate consumption amongst users in a subscription model.
One out of every nine employees in the United States works in sales, making it the second-largest occupation in the country. However, in spite of the large community of people working in sales, the profession needs digital enablement to sell remotely in a virtual engagement model. There are very few University Programs that offer a formal degree in Sales Leadership. Also reports from the research firm CSO Insights reveal that up to half of all salespeople fail to meet their quota. This is further compounded by the current COVID-19 pandemic with selling going completely remote.
As per a LinkedIn Sales blog in 2019 the top ten emerging (high growth) jobs listed, five of them are some form of sales role: Application Sales Executive, Professional Medical Representative, Relationship Consultant, Sales Development Representative, and Business Support Consultant. Thankfully, Sales Robots Aren’t Replacing Humans Yet.
With the move towards virtual selling, the skills and competency framework for sales people will be going through a paradigm change. It will be interesting to see the new sales roles that will emerge during and post the COVID-19 pandemic with more specialization. In my view new specialized sales roles will emerge in areas such as Neurosciences (Emotional), Technology (AI, Digital) , Social Media (Social Selling) and Knowledge Enablement (Learning & Content) related competencies.
An effort in this direction is being led by Sales Education Foundation (SEF) a non-profit Foundation that has promoted the benefits of university sales education both in academia and the corporate world – ultimately changing the world’s view of the term “sales.” SEF has planted the seed of providing sales education to multiple colleges and universities and has become a “primary search engine for all things Sales education.”
In the growing gig economy, selling is a universal skill set that needs to be developed. It is like a life skill for survival.
The world needs knowledgeable sales people with a growth mindset!
Award winning digital platforms like Regalix Nytro create the personalized learning experience for sellers in their contextual journey through a unified aproach to engage buyers and propel demand through innovative solutions to win in a subscription led business.