Each year I get to work with dozens of companies at various levels, from doing a single keynote to engaging long-term with them in a consulting or training project.
One thing I’ve found is every company has a sales culture. Problem is many companies don’t realize it.
A few years ago I was sitting in the office of a VP of Sales for a mid-size company. The VP was quick to say how the sales team was simply not pulling their weight. The view was the only sales they were getting were due to price and availability of supply.
The longer I sat there, the more the VP ripped into each and every member of the team, stating how stupid they were and how he himself was responsible for the majority of business.
After listening to his rant, I asked him what level of support he and other senior managers provided the sales team. Without missing a beat, he barked back saying, “We hire salespeople who already know what they’re doing, so they shouldn’t need any assistance. If they need assistance, then I don’t need them.”
Wow. If you’re a salesperson for that company, what does that tell you? It says, “Keep your head down. Ignore those around you and hopefully you’ll be able to keep your job.”
As I continued to sit there listening to this VP rip into his people, it became clear the biggest issue was him. He couldn’t see it, because he was so caught up in his own ego. The reason I’m sharing this story is because it’s important we all be humble enough to look at our own performance.
The results our people achieve are a direct reflection of who we are and our leadership style.
If you’re the smartest person on your team, then you’ve assembled the wrong team. Our objective is to be confident enough in what we do that having people around who are smarter than us is seen as an asset. Our job is to elevate others.
I’ve found time and time again how the make up of a sales team is a direct reflection of management. What’s even more powerful is how much this rubs off on how we treat our customers.
Show respect to your people and work to elevate them, and they in turn will show respect to their customers and work to help them succeed.
If you’re wondering what happened to the VP of Sales I was talking with, he eventually was fired. More than a year later, to the best of my knowledge, he is still looking for work.
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Copyright 2018, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results