The Sacred Cows of Sales

Jamie Shanks
Jamie Shanks

Sales leadership is busy keeping the status quo alive because it’s proven to be effective in the past. However, times have changed and our sales approaches have to change.

Every generation or so, there seems to be a massive improvement in technology. Since the introduction of personal computing, things are evolving faster than ever before. It’s interesting to see that as technology evolves, the world of sales drags its heels.

The department responsible for advancing and propagating the latest and greatest is the one opposed to growth. While there are companies that are exceptions to this rule, status quo is still the rule.

Holding on to the status quo is not just something that we do, it’s something that’s rewarded. Entire systems and leadership brass is there to guard against offsetting and disrupting what works. These are the sacred cows of sales. Like religion, these methods are so holy that they can’t be questioned or touched.

Many sales departments are operating that way today. Sales leadership is busy keeping the status quo alive because it’s proven to be effective in the past. They’re not able to see that the times have changed.

When known systems and procedures have produced predictable results, why tinker with it?

Not Just Another Social Selling Rant

I don’t want this piece to be another social selling rant. It’s about change. Do we believe in the basic fundamentals of today’s buyer? Can we acknowledge that:

  • Buyers are increasingly likely to start their buying journey online with research?
  • Social media platforms (LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, etc.) help buyers by discovering more from similar people?

Additionally, do you believe the data that sats the bulk of buyer research is done online before they contact a sales person?

If you don’t believe this, then protecting the sacred cows is something you’ll naturally do. However, think about it, most people naturally tend to start any kind of research online these days. Be it for movies they want to see, restaurants they’d like to try, or TVs they’d like to purchase. Why wouldn’t that behavior carry forward into the work place?

The Bottom Line

The evolution of buyer behavior is the reason why social selling works. If buyers hadn’t changed, then our old ways of connecting with them would still be appropriate. This is why it’s an interesting time to be in the world of social selling. The entire system of social rests fundamentally with belief.

Without believing that the buyer has changed, nothing matters. Status quo persists. Sacred cow systems and processes continue.

Amar Sheth


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