Everyone in business is looking for something that is going to make them more competitive in the current business market. Should we network at more business meetings or perhaps become more active on social media sites? Change the process on how we interact with our customers or perhaps have a strategy for developing a new market to sell to? Create a new marketing plan? There is another solution that you can put into place quickly and easily. Sales people that understand that it is emotions that drive buying decisions will also know that optimism is a key skill to master. Before you start thinking that this is just another article on the soft skills that does not relate to a financial outcome, evidence shows that optimistic salespeople generate considerably more sales.
One of the best case studies on optimism comes from the work of psychologist Martin Seligman. He worked with the sales team at insurance giant, Metropolitan Life to help them increase their sales performance. He worked with the sales team and from the measurements he put in place, he found that the sales people who scored high in optimism sold on average 37% more than those who scored low. In addition, their customer retention increased as well.
How does your sales team react to the challenges that the market throws their way? Are they discussing new strategies and ideas for building deeper relationships with clients or are they just telling the management how bad the market is? In other words, are they a glass half full sales team or a glass half empty sales team? Salespeople should be concerned that they do not become too negative when markets become tougher. So what message or mood is the sales management team sending to your sales team? What message is your sales team communicating to customers and prospects? How many of your sales team are starting their sales meetings with words like, “I know that money must be tight for you” or something similar. With an opening like that, they are just inviting considerably more price pressure on themselves.
So what can the sales management do to turn around any negative moods and comments in the sales team?
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