Monday, March 16, 2015

Hunters, Farmers Within Your Corporate Sales Culture…



Hunters, Farmers Within Your Corporate Sales Culture…
Nick Ashton, CEO CommSmart Global


I remember asking my father-in-law, who was a farmer in Norfolk, England, if, I could help him on the land, his reply tells you more about farmers than you think you know.  He replied “We have special stuff for that”!

Farmers spend more time fretting in the details, worrying about the weather patterns, making shrewd decisive selections regarding seeds and breeding and working firm and fervently to avoid a dismal crop.

Clearly, farming is a completely different from the activity of hunting. Hunters, have long periods of distraction interrupted by brief moments of frantic panic.

Why are we talking Hunters and Farmers?  

Simple, this is new times, although growing unsociable, it is the reality of daily life.  It is all about the cultural cycle which decides how corporations attain success or failure.

When it comes to sales, isn't the foremost principles for a successful salesperson their personality?  This comes from the general feeling that to be good at sales, you either have "it" or you do not. The truth is, successful sales is not all about personality (experience, skills, subject matter knowledge, adaptability and process also play important roles) but it is a causative influence.

So we ask, are you a Hunter or a Farmer?

  • The Hunter is a person who gleans their sales energy off of the “hunt” for the new opportunity. They are often consultative sales people who characteristically find and assess an opportunity (even when there doesn’t appear to be one) within a prospect, and find a solution within your offering that meets the specific need.
They are networkers and completely independent. They generate buzz and excitement. Truthfully, they are not always upright at the follow-through and focus.

  • The Farmer is the sales person who shapes and nurtures relationships and opportunities, typically within current accounts. Farmers are the sales people who turn a customer from good to great by the nature of their relationship and loyalty they advance from their labors. They nurture, collaborate with true team connections and are deemed team players. Sadly, they are not always decent at prospecting new clients.
As the owner of a company, you remember when you moved forward with your corporate ideas, the excitement of the possibilities of success.  The decisions of who you hired was not as clear as it should have been back then or even today.  The immediacy for getting the show on the road clouds our choices of who we hire.

Now, down the road with experience under your belt, you are too close to the internal and external daily format of the business.  It is not the same as your inceptive planning.  Sales are the engine of your company and just like a bee hive, production of the honey is the total goal and remembering you must look after the leadership and the workers.

Increasing your company’s sales performance (growth) is unfortunately not just the matter of finding the right sales persons(s) or sales managers!

Great sales teams work and live in a total environment which enables them to continuously perform well above average.

Such an environment is different for every single company and is a made up from what that company produces, how it is organized, its culture and leadership, it is the internal communications, the logistics of it all.

It is all about the following: 
  • Consultancy time to define the full details of the current situation at your company;
  • Assessment tools to evaluate the existing sales and marketing organization, if any;
  • Talent acquisition services needed for the selection and evaluation of new sales professionals to enhance the sales operations, if any;
  • Training services needed to bring the existing sales team up to the necessary level of performance, if any;
  • Coaching tools and/or programs to support the sales team during the follow-up phase.

Importantly, it is all about you and the commitment to the desired results.  It is vital to be a top down commitment, but also the necessary to view from bottom up as well.

Do not let this scare you!  

So if you are in doubt about your own company and are a Small, Medium Enterprise (SME), you are the owner, CEO or Board Member, you have nothing to lose in talking with us.

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