Why Should Selling be Viewed as a Team Effort
I was recently watching an episode of NCIS New Orleans the other day and was intrigued by the great team work involved. NCIS Supervisory Special Agent Dwayne Pride – the series’ protagonist and leader – heads up a professional team of specialists focussing on crimes that involve personnel in the United States Navy and Marine Corps.
As a charismatic team leader, he does an excellent job of listening to his team members to determine appropriate courses of action and to craft a synchronized and aligned plan – the “How” – to catch the bad guys. The plan is then executed with each team member being assigned tasks. Plenty of communication and feedback take place and, in the end, the successful conclusion is celebrated.
It struck me that actually no one does it alone. In my active days as an amateur rugby union player it was always the team that won games – not any individual player. Each player had a speciality, yet all worked towards the common goal of winning the next game. The same is true of any other team sport, including the ‘sport’ of sales.
Strategic Sales Orchestrators
There have been numerous articles written on the subject of sales reps, account executives, or client directors aspiring to be “CEOs” or “Managing Directors” of their client(s) or territory. This is especially true in complex B2B environments, where sales execs in many cases must orchestrate many internal resources to bring one ‘story’ to their clients.
Being a CEO or managing director implies that you are in charge to set long-, medium-, and short-term goals and to lead a team of professionals from various disciplines in order to achieve these aims. A CEO or managing director also interacts with the board of directors to define the “Why” and the “What”.
Rather than a managing director, a possible, better term may be Strategic Sales Orchestrator, as it may be a better description of what sales reps, account executives or client directors do, as the focus is clearly on the “How”.
Strategic Sales Orchestrators and their teams are part of the company-wide team and are the operational, front line implementors of the overall corporate strategy set by corporate leadership.
Most complex B2B environments today have long sales cycles that require a strategic team selling approach.
Strategic Sales Orchestrators marshal ALL resources in matrix organisations and align them to the clients. This also includes partners, and influencers. It includes resources that are both business and technically oriented.
Needless to say, this requires quite a degree of planning, collaboration, and communication with all constituents before, during and after pursuits. It means crafting appropriate messages targeted at various stakeholders to address the various justifications to be able to stand out from the me-too crowd.
Professional selling is team work. It is not solo work. It is all about engaging, listening and assisting others to help solve their tough business challenges and improve their business processes to stay ahead. And, it is all about building and maintaining relationships – both internally and externally. People do business with people they know, like and trust.
Just as a CEO or managing director cannot do it all by themselves, Strategic Sales Orchestrators, too, need a team of professionals to demonstrate and provide the outcomes your offerings promise and your clients demand.
Remember: the best solution, service, and product is worthless without paying clients.
Strategic Sales Orchestrators help drive your top line revenues and as such assist in increasing the value of YOUR company.