25% of Sales Reps Are Selling the Wrong Thing

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A Harvard Business study revealed that 80% of sales are produced by only 20% of the sales people. The old 80/20 rule. Yet, if only 20% of sales professionals produce results, what are the other 80% doing?

Unfortunately, 55% have little or no sales ability and should work in other fields. The remaining 25% are mismatched. Mismatched means they are selling the wrong product or service based on their behavioral style. Not all sales people are created equal. Some are better suited for quick sales cycles; others excel in longer consultative sales cycles. Some are better at selling products, while others are more effective selling services. Some love building relationships; others prefer closing and passing account management to others.

So, ask yourself, do have the right sales person for what I sell and how we sell? Industry experience, years of experience, and education may not mean a thing if a sales person is mismatched to the sales position. According to Gallup research, poor fit to the job is the #2 predictor of employee turnover.

Sales assessments provide a simple way to evaluate the behavioral style of a sales candidate. We use a sales assessment that measures candidates’ abilities in four sales styles . . . Value, Consultative, Account Management, and Commodity. A sales professional who scores high on the Value style has a higher chance of success in sales. They can create demand for product or services and shortened the sales cycle.

If you have members on your sales team that are struggling to produce results, they may be more successful selling something else. For example, a person with a background of selling newspaper advertising may be successful with quick sales cycles and frequent closes. This same person may struggle in a longer consultative sales process selling expensive technology solutions.

Learn more about how to identify if your sales team is matched well to their sales roles.

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