What comes first: the weapon, or the animal?

When Chris Howe took to Africa is search of the governing concepts that constituted a successful culture, his encounters with the traditional Maasai tribe offered a unique insight that could translate into enhanced performance and, ultimately, increased sales revenue for UK business.

With a diverse and sophisticated array of weaponry available to sales people in the likes of objection-handling techniques, concepts for questioning or tips for getting past the gatekeeper and more, businesses invest considerably in ensuring their people are well-armed before going in for the kill and bringing home the sale. However, equipping sales professionals with a standardised set of skills designed with a single objective in mind – make the kill – could be costing business valuable opportunities by failing to acknowledge the unique circumstances and nature of each individual prospect. In a world boasting an increasingly astute and knowledgeable customer, knowing your weapon alone is not enough.

At a personal level, it is commonly accepted by all that each individual is unique. However when it comes to customers, clients and prospects, sales professionals continue to adopt a ‘one-size-fits-all’ philosophy to driving the sales process. The result is business leaders sending their sales people in blind, knowledgeable about the tools and weapons they should utilise, but lacking necessary knowledge about that prospect in order to tailor their sales approach.

The Maasai philosophy dictates that the way in which hunters use the same weapon would differ significantly when facing the buffalo in comparison to the ostrich. Both can be found in very different habitats, will move and react differently and will be more approachable at different times of the day. It’s a concept that can translate into the sales process: if sales people understand their target customer, they can afford to adapt their weapons accordingly, increasing sales success.

Investment into training around the research and lead generation process can encourage sales professionals to capitalise fully upon the increasing amounts of information available, identifying those specific avenues that can wield valuable insight into the prospect. In line with the time-old cliché, ‘knowledge is power’ this fuller picture can empower the sales person ahead of the pitch.

Weaponry remains an essential cornerpiece for sales professionals, a belief reflected by increasing investment into sales training and development across the industry. However, it is just one contributory factor in an increasingly complex sales process: combined with practiced applied skill in utilising those tools and an acute, gathered knowledge of the prospective prey, UK businesses could significantly impact upon their revenue generation and sales success.

For further insight and discuss, the whitepaper ‘Weapon vs. Animal’ is now available to [ilink url=”http://www.pareto.co.uk/sales-development/media-centre/whitepapers/xs5bhDOJrMQ=”]download from the Pareto website[/ilink] .