Yes – even the grumpiest git in your company can sell….

by admin on January 31, 2012

Joe tended to see all things that came after 1963 as 'Humbug'. He hadn't.

In earlier posts. here  and here, we’ve talked about ‘the missing gene’ in professional services consultants, and the challenges that professionals face when asked to sell, particularly when ‘the wind is in your face’ and the economy is moving away from you. For business leaders, the problem of getting your team ‘out there’ is a tough one to face, particularly for the less willing members of your team.

If someone on your team won’t sell; or doesn’t like ‘selling’, you might seek advice to help them; you might even ask Jim or Phil. However, I am a great proponent of the theory that energy invested in core weaknesses is energy wasted and before we ask Grumpy Joe – let’s call him that – to develop a marketing plan and think about how he communicates value to his clients; let’s consider writing him a sick note and see if we can’t use his current skills eslewhere before wasting time and money trying to get the donkey to dance.

At the risk of stereotyping (there is a reason you know!). Let me describe Grumpy Joe – see if you can recognise him in your organisation: Joe has 20 + years experience, he’s solid and has seen it all, he doesn’t like clients much, and he gets surly when he meets them, it’s as if he holds them in contempt… How can Joe contribute to the sales process?

More often than you would realise these people can be really good at selling for an organisation. Presumably, they do good work- if they don’t then WTF are they still employed?; often they’re a source of stability and wisdom for the less experienced members of your team, and they are probably just terrified of having to become their own worst nightmare.  A shiny-suited sales geezer.

So what’s the answer? It’s in the ‘See, the unhelpful bastard really does create work for other people…’ post here.


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