Sales and Sales Management Blog

April 5, 2011

Let’s Stop with the Stupidity and Start Dealing with Real Problems


Don’t know if you’re aware of it or not, but obviously you’re wasting your time trying to make a living in sales because:

Cold calling is dead.

High pressure sales tactics are dead.

Consultative and solution sales processes are dead.

Salespeople who aren’t using social media are dead.

Selling as we have known it for the past several thousand years is dead.

Sales training is dead.

I’ve heard all of these proclamations numerous times just since the beginning of the year. 

Then, over the weekend I heard that relationship based selling is also dead.

Isn’t it time the stupidity stop?

Yes, the Internet has impacted the way people buy—to some extent.  It hasn’t changed human nature.

New sales opportunities will still be developed through cold calls.

There will always be a group of sellers that resort to high pressure tactics—and some buyers who will succumb to it.

The most successful sellers will still be focusing on solving client issues.

To the amazement of some, for decades to come there will be highly successful salespeople who won’t use social media as a marketing tool.

There will still be buyers—and still be salespeople.

There will still be sellers who need to learn the skills of selling, relationship building, communicating, and delivering superior service.

And a great big percentage of the transactions will be someone making purchase decisions based on trusted relationships with sellers.

So why all the death talk?  Some of the proclaimers of death actually believe what they say; they just don’t really understand human nature.  Others are simply seeking controversy and trying to call attention to themselves.

Either way, instead of wasting time with hyperbole and doing a tremendous dis-service to sellers and sales leaders, we should be concentrating on dealing with the very real problems and issues of the salespeople we are supposed to be helping—and a silly discussion about whether cold calling works or not or whether or not building a relationship of trust with a prospect is a good idea or not isn’t serving anyone other than the writer seeking to make a splash.

The next time you see an article title that proclaims the death of anything, move on as there will be nothing of value to be had there.

 Death to all the death proclamations–and let’s get on with dealing with the real world issues that plague sellers and sales leaders.

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5 Comments »

  1. Paul,

    Yes! Thank you for writing this post. Cold calling is not dead and it won’t be dead any time soon. Social media can help support your efforts, but you don’t need to be using social media to be successful. Sales is about building relationships with the right people at the right companies. The fact is, in a B2B setting, people buy from people (and they generally buy from people they like).

    So my advice to sales people out there: get back to the basics. Get on the phones and out there in the marketplace and start building relationship. Now it sounds simple – but it’s not. There’s a lot to it, and that’s where the sales training and process piece come in. But that’s a topic for another post…

    Erica

    Comment by Erica Stritch — April 5, 2011 @ 4:30 pm | Reply

  2. Paul,

    Your Rock!

    Thank you for saying what needed saying. Selling, Cold Calling, Relationship Building and the plain old basics are alive and kicking.

    Jeb Blount
    SalesGravy.com

    Comment by Jeb Blount — April 5, 2011 @ 4:41 pm | Reply

  3. Wonderful and well said Paul. As long as there is commerce, there will be salespeople. For those who think selling is evil, then we’re a necessary evil.

    Comment by Gary S. Hart — April 6, 2011 @ 9:42 am | Reply

  4. I am delighted to see more and more articles telling things the way they really are, and this is a prime example. If my job could be done by the internet I would be out of a job, guess what – I am making a good living doing what we do best – selling using tried and tested personal routes to market.
    I love the new media for generating a small number of new leads for me – but that is all it does. Without the phone, my car and my feet there would never be enough leads and they would never turn into orders.

    Comment by Graham Penson — April 13, 2011 @ 3:37 am | Reply

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