Sales as a distinctive feature

We are from a world in which generating turn-over was relatively easy. We could handle technological developments and customers’ wishes. The number of competitors were limited.

Because of changes in these areas, many organizations stranded in a world in which their products or services are seen as little distinctive, as just a commodity, and judged on (lowest) price. Many organizations even offer products and services that soon won’t be necessary. Organizing sales seems more important than ever!

To many people, too much selling sounds bad. It’s something they’d rather not do. In job titles, the word ‘sales’ is often avoided and people prefer to call themselves advisor, account manager, initiator, business developer, area manager, etc. Some businesses even avoid doing active sales. But by doing active sales, you create added value for your customers in the broadest sense: by realizing their dreams. Sales is nothing more than creating more value than your competitors. The one who can do it the best, whomever can surprise the customer, will get the deals. That is how you create a fan base amongst customers and employees, which will lead to bigger and more organic turn-overs.

Realizing customers dreams = creating added value. But where to start?

Realizing the customers’ dreams will in most cases stretch beyond your own products and services. In fact, sometimes they even get in the way. You create the total solution mainly by making the latent customer needs active and then solving them. The customer doesn’t yet feel he has these latent needs, but he does. It’s up to you to make this clear to them. The challenge is to do it better than others. Creating added value is hard work.

Your business’ right to exist depends mostly on your employees and how much they want to get to know the needs of the customer.

Surprising excellence is the new standard

  • Level I ‘operational excellence’: organizations do exactly what they promise to do.
  • Level II ‘operational excellence++’: organizations deliver a little bit more, just a small extra step. Many organizations don’t get this far.
  • Level III ‘surprising excellence’: making the latent needs active is seen here as an art form. Organizations surprise their customers. The beauty if this is that there is always a latent need. The trick is to make them active.

 What level is your organization on?

Level III organizations create the most added value. They excel in getting to know the latent needs of customers. They are not afraid to ask open, and sometimes even confronting, questions. This curiosity is ingrained in their DNA. Managers and board member have consciously chosen this sales philosophy, as opposed to making fractional choices with top-down CRM projects, sales courses, and hypes such as NPS, a scripted customer journey with a few impact points. Of course, every bit helps, but to what extent does this create an organization with a unique customer dream philosophy?

Proof that you are distinctive

Who doesn’t want to reach level III? All employees at this level, despite their role, can without a doubt tell you what that distinctive quality is. We call that ‘the gold dot’. This isn’t a buzz word, like some other core values, but a tangible quality.

What are the golden dots in your organization?

In the future, sales might be your only distinctive quality throughout the entire organizational chain. It is a profession, embrace it, be proud of it and don’t go to sleep until you’re the best at it!

Do you want to learn more about what a modern sales machine and commercial blueprint should look like? Take the test, book an inspiration session and challenge your team to find ways to make a difference with your organization.

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