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20 sales challenges

Client Acquisition

Market Penetration

  • Achieving/surpassing sales targets as well as attaining forecasting precision. 

  • Inability to mine existing accounts for business expansion.

  • ‘Competitor knowledge’ fog. Limited clue & updates about competitor’s tactics and approach.

  • How to leverage through social media, referrals, testimonials, events etc.

  • Ineffectual in galvanising channel partners, joint ventures, franchises, distribution channels etc. 

  • Unable to create new lines of business, brand extensions, usage maximisation, product/service boom. 

  • Unable to create an altogether new category, ie product/process disruption. 

Client Centric

Attaining

the flow

  • Imperfect techniques to sell at C-suite level, lack of consultative selling knowledge .

  • Sales person getting into a constant discovery mode with the client to establish client’s needs. Invokes disinterest from client in having to keep answering and provide information at the inception stage.

  • Deficiency in communicating with impact, the seller’s story, the essence, the transformative insight, the pitch.  

  • Inadequacy in communicating genuine differentiators and value proposition to the client.

  • Understanding the vision, mission, branding strategies, commercial pursuits, procurement budget allocations, technology direction, product expansions and buying preferences of the client.

Cognitive Sensing

The

Mind angle

  • Either meeting prospect’s CxO too early in the selling process, thereby creating sub-optimal impact or the other extreme i.e. inability to access the CxO at the right time.

  • Excessive time lost by sales people in pursuing immalleable prospects. Improper sensing of buying intent.

  • Firing up the intrinsic motivation of the sales team and sustaining it.

  • Sales team having inappreciable cognitive selling skills or not keeping abreast of the hugely changing dynamics in selling approach.

  • Insufficient proficiency to challenge the customer with insightful propositions thereby getting commoditized and succumbing to a price pressure.

  • Sales person remaining in transactional mode with the client and not elevating the status to robust relational levels.

Sales Administration

Outside the 

client-faced arena

  • Stepping into an RFP labyrinth at a very protracted stage thereby ensuring participation but puzzling over its success. Drains the firm’s precious bandwidth.

  • Salesforce.com and other systems do capture the essence of a sales meeting but reticence is noted in the sales force to provide quality feed into the system.

  • Inadequate ‘qualified leads’ generated (by self & marketing) thereby compelling the sales person to spend excessive time in lead generation & admin tasks as against the more productive face-to-face selling time.

  • Unable to allocate a 2 or 3 day sales training reprieve to the team to replenish skills. Perception of time loss from the field.

  • Incoherence between marketing & sales resulting in improper priming of sales team. Lack of incisive data about customer’s position, challenges, and constraints.

TRUST BECAUSE YOU ARE WILLING TO ACCEPT THE RISK,

NOT BECAUSE IT'S SAFE OR CERTAIN.

- Anonymous