In an ever-competitive business world, building a strong and effective sales organization is very important.
However, there can be pitfalls hidden in plain sight that may be undermining your success.
These blindspots are often overlooked, considered inconsequential or altogether misunderstood.
As a result, they persist in most organizations, causing inefficiencies and stagnating progress.
Today, let me share the three cardinal ‘sins’ common in sales organizations and their potential impact on your team’s effectiveness and business outcomes.
Let’s get started.
1. Mistaking Activity for Progress
The first ‘sin’ is considering activity as progress.
In reality, being busy isn’t necessarily synonymous with making progress.
Within a sales organization, a common misstep is interpreting the response to RFPs (Requests For Proposals) and tenders as progress.
As seasoned professionals, we know that unless we have dictated the conditions or specifications of an RFP or tender, our chances of winning are below 10%.
Yet, countless organizations pour significant resources into these endeavors.
The fixation with responding to tenders, despite the meager success rate, underscores the common misinterpretation of activity as progress.
2. Mistaking Fluency for Comprehension
The second ‘sin’ is equating fluency with comprehension.
Smooth or fast talkers don’t necessarily understand the topics they discuss.
As responsible leaders, we must peel back the layers, like an onion, to ascertain the depth of their understanding.
Do they grasp the systemic impact of their propositions?
Are they able to get to the heart of the matter?
Are they offering a better story or painting a better picture instead of mere rhetorics?
In essence, fluency should not be mistaken for comprehension.
3. Mistaking Tenure for Competence
Lastly, the third ‘sin’ is mistaking tenure for competence.
An employee’s longevity in an organization doesn’t automatically make them more skilled or efficient.
Being in the company for 10 or 15 years doesn’t automatically make them smarter.
What truly matters is how their tenure translates into differentiated business results, insights, and foresights brought to discussions.
Does their experience make them better team players?
Do they inspire and empower others?
Always remember that tenure is not equivalent to competence.
When assessing your sales organization, it’s vital to check if these three sins are at play.
Are you mistaking activity for progress?
Are you confusing fluency with comprehension?
Are you equating tenure with competence?
If so, it’s time to dismantle these misconceptions and refocus your organization on the strategies that matter most.
Concentrate on what I refer to as the ‘20% actions’ that deliver ‘80% results.’
In doing so, you’ll significantly enhance the effectiveness of your sales team, leading to higher productivity and better results.
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