In this week’s Flip Side coverage, I want to take you through a sales-oriented post from a blog called The Pipeline on ‘Selling to Procurement’. The Pipeline is written by Tibor Shanto, Founder and President of Renbor Sales Solutions Inc., and creator of Objective Based Selling.
As this week’s guest sound bite in our PI Window on Business Blog Talk Radio update, we heard from S. Anthony Iannarino, author of The Sales Blog, talking about what sales people need to do in order to create recognizable value for their clients.
People do business with people they like. We have all heard that phrase before and know it holds a great deal of weight. In this economic climate, the financials have to be the key driver in decision making. However, with that being comparable, the strength of the relationship will seal the deal.
The process is basic and simple but since not everyone does this, it can be quite a differentiator. This has a lot to do with procurement since you have internal customers and also constantly working with suppliers and salesmen.
“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
― John Lubbock, 1st Baron Avebury (1834 - 1913)
This week's trip to the Flip Side is a humorous - and visual - look at the many perceptions of sales people. We came across an image last week that represents how sales people are perceived by their friends, customers, and society as a whole as well as the way they see themselves versus what their job is really like. We also had our undercover sales advisor, “The Sales Guy” interpret the reality of the situation. Visuals are a great way to communicate subtle differences, and this will allow you to laugh as well as to gain some additional insight into the complex, multi-faceted world of being a sales account rep.
Without further ado, here is the picture:
This week’s Flip Slide notes are from ValueSelling Associates, a sales training and professional skills development organization. The audio from the webinar as well as the slides are available on their website.
As with the other content we cover on The Flip Side, the message of this sales training session is absolutely applicable to a procurement audience. In fact, if once I’ve shared the list of the ‘5 Keys’ with you, it doesn’t even really look like advice for sales.
Flip Side Webinar Notes: Innovating With Suppliers To Cut Costs, Support Growth, And Navigate An Uncertain Economy
Last week, MyPurchasingCenter hosted a webinar called, ‘Innovating With Suppliers To Cut Costs, Support Growth, And Navigate An Uncertain Economy’. The main speaker was from Vantage Partners, a Boston-based management consulting firm specializing in negotiation skills development. We don’t usually cover events presented to a buy-side audience on The Flip Side, but this particular event shared a significant amount of supplier perspective on innovation between buyer and supplier.
You can view/listen to the event on demand on MyPurchasingCenter's site.
As part of Buyers Meeting Point's ‘Flip Side’ resource, we often read sales blogs and attend sales webinars to take the trends we see and apply them for the benefit of supply management and procurement professionals. A recent post by S. Anthony Iannarino, author of ‘The Sales Blog’ covered the foundational and secondary skill sets possessed by most successful sales people, then went on to describe the additional competencies that will be required for ‘The New Consultative Salesperson’.
In the Flip Side, Buyers Meeting Point takes knowledge from sales training, webinars, blogs, and whitepapers and flips them so supply management professionals can apply the information to their own challenges. Negotiation is one of those areas where this concept works particularly well. After all, negotiating is negotiating, regardless of which side of the table you are on. This week we will hear from ‘The Accidental Negotiator,’ Dr. Jim Anderson about negotiation.
The Sales Guy Speaks: Notes from the Monthly Strategic Sourcing & Procurement LinkedIn Group Member Call
On January 31st “The Sales Guy”, BMP’s undercover sales advisor, was the featured speaker on the Strategic Sourcing & Procurement Group Call. We recommend that you become a member of the SS&P Group if you aren’t already.
If you are interested in learning more about The Sales Guy and the insights he has offered through Buyers Meeting Point, you can read our Posts from the Flip Side or submit a question to him to be answered in our blog. You can also listen to the call recording on demand.
Do you have a question you'd like to ask The Sales Guy? Submit it here and we'll track him down and get an answer. All answers will be shared anonymously on 'The Point' blog so we can all join in the conversation.
In our past conversations with The Sales Guy, he reminded us of the important role the calendar plays in a supplier’s sales strategy and execution. So as we start a new calendar year, we caught up with TSG to see what we should expect our sales counterparts to be focused on right now…
Last week I attended a webinar called “Negotiating To Win: Strategies And Tactics For Sales Professionals”, presented by ValueSelling Associates. Even though the intended audience was sales professionals, negotiating is negotiating, regardless of which side of the table you are sitting on. As a reminder, if you like the “Flip Side” perspective, check out our sales blog and resource directory for our favorite sources of sales information.
Flip Side Webinar Notes: Maximizing Renewal Revenue – Continuing to Deliver Value to Earn the Renewal
This week’s trip to The Flip Side is brought to us through a webinar held last week by the TAS Group, a sales methodology and training company. The event was called “Maximizing Renewal Revenue – Continuing to Deliver Value to Earn the Renewal”. Just so we’re all on the same page, Renewal revenue is sales speak for what we consider awarding business to an incumbent supplier.
Flip Side Webinar Notes: Selling To and Negotiating With Today's Tougher, Strategic Procurers/Buyers/Sourcers
Other than a brief introduction of each panelist at the beginning of the event moderated by ES Research, this was an entirely unrehearsed, unscripted discussion among four industry experts in the area of selling and negotiating with the corporate procurement function. Live questions were taken from the audience via telephone. There were no slides. One of the speakers on the call described procurement and our processes as being "like trying to get a peek behind the curtain of Oz".
“Do not arouse the wrath of the great and powerful Oz. I said come back tomorrow.”
-- The Wizard of Oz, 1939
Last week’s featured event notes were focused on the challenges specific to the procurement of complex services. As a continuation of that, I did some reading on the differences in SELLING professional services.
One of my favorite places to go for sales white papers is Huthwaite’s resource library. If you are interested in more, you can download their whitepapers and read them yourself – no registration process required.
Last week I attended a great webinar (sponsored by the Next Level Purchasing Association) on Procurement Innovation where Peter Nero from Denali Group discussed just how critical a customer service orientation is to the future of procurement within the organization. While I listened to him discuss some of the changes procurement will need to make to improve the status quo, I couldn’t help but think about how sales reps deal with demanding customers on a regular basis. And for them, not satisfying those customers often means not getting a sale.