There have been countless books, articles and videos created to address the age-old price issue. Some call it an objection while others (like me) refer to it as a concern. Either way, this has been tackled every which way under the sun…from suggesting better upfront prospect qualification to a host of resolution tactics.
Many experts point their fingers at salespeople as the cause of the issue while others blame the prospects. In some cases, one of those two parties may be the cause, but there’s another entity to put under the microscope. Corporate Executives!
Let’s trace the price issue back to the very beginning of the salesperson’s relationship with the company…the moment in time at which an offer is extended. The executive presents an offer to the candidate because she believes she’s found a great salesperson. And, there’s the problem…the myth of great salespeople. An effective interview process does not expose great salespeople. It identifies those with the potential to be great salespeople in a specific role for the company.
When executives buy into the myth of "hiring great salespeople,” they fall into the trap of assuming that they have an instant rainmaker on their hands…meaning the salesperson is ready to sell on their first day with the company. However, when executives accept that they are hiring those with the potential to be great, there is a recognition that a structured onboarding program is required to help salespeople apply their skills in the sales role for the company to ensure their true potential is achieved.
Every sales role, in every company, in every industry is unique which means that the appropriate strategies and tactics to navigate through the price concern are also unique. It is a flawed approach to rely on "great salespeople” to figure out the right price strategy. Onboarding is the corporate opportunity to provide salespeople with the tools needed to effectively position the product’s value.
Sick and tired of your salespeople and prospects requesting lower prices? Check your onboarding program to ensure you’ve bridged the gap between salesperson skills and proficiency in the sales role.
See you next time on the Sales Management Minute.