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    Do You Want to Kill the Pain, or Solve the Problem?

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    Most of us know that in order to stay healthy, we need exercise, good nutrition, rest, and to take our vitamins. But very often, we get busy with life and forget these essentials. Before long, we start to suffer for it. At that point, we all know we should slow down and address the problem - but more often, we seek a pill to kill the pain so we can keep going.

    Obviously, medications are sometimes necessary for good health. But too often, we pop pain pills for problems we could solve with appropriate exercise, nutrition, rest, and vitamins.

    We do the same thing in business. When we fail to maintain the fundamentals for good business health, we end up in pain. Then we focus on killing that pain. We ask ourselves questions like: What is the customer’s pain, what are our pain points, where is the pain, how do we resolve this pain?

    Just like physical health, sales health depends on a solid foundation.

    This can be useful, but sometimes our focus on solving pain distracts us from solving the problem that led to the pain in the first place.

    7 Painkillers Sales Teams Take Instead of Solving Their Problems

    Sales teams are as guilty as anyone of looking for easy fixes that temporarily muffle their pain, without actually solving the problems that cause the pain.

    1. We struggle to attract new customers, so we buy automation solutions that spam prospects in bulk, hoping that something will stick
    2. We fall behind on our quotas, so we skip steps in the process in hopes of closing faster, like identifying all the decision-makers
    3. Our teams lack critical skills, so we send them to one-day training workshops, hoping that the latest shiny sales methodology will do magic
    4. We can’t see what’s happening in our pipelines, so we purchase point solutions that promise Artificial Intelligence to analyze messy data
    5. We promote our top sales performers to managers without understanding if they’re a good fit for the role and without giving them proper training, resources, and support
    6. We assume that salespeople with strong CVs can sell our solutions, so we don’t develop well-designed sales strategies and sales processes
    7. We fail to introduce clear guidelines for entering sales projects to the pipeline and curse over missed forecasts

    How Painkillers are Killing Your Sales

    Every painkiller you pop causes bigger problems down the road. Point solutions lead to point pollution. Skipping steps leads to lost deals. Poorly designed “training bursts” costs money without improving effectiveness. Artificial Intelligence without good data leads to messy and ineffective outcomes. Promoting and hiring the wrong people is expensive. Stacking software on top of software leads to the Frankenstack problem.

    All of it adds up to a system that kills deals more effectively than it wins them.

    How to Stop Popping Pills and Take Care of Your Sales Health

    To stop the vicious cycle of declining effectiveness and increasing “pain pills,” you are going to have to take a step back.

    Slow down and examine the health of your sales system. Check in to find root causes. Then return to the fundamentals. Just like physical health, sales health depends on a solid foundation. Think of it as rest, nutrition, vitamins, and exercise for your sales team:

    • Rest: Slow down and take the time to look at your process and how it maps to how your buyers make decisions. Map out stages, milestones, steps, and activities, and make them executable for your sales team. Do this regularly so you can assess and measure and improve your process.
    • Nutrition: Nurture customer and prospect relationships. Take an interest in positive outcomes for your clients, not just the dollars they can deliver.
    • Vitamins: Write the project plans, coach, train - do the background work that delivers the foreground results.
    • Exercise: Make the calls, do the follow-up, work the process, stick with it day after day.

    We all like shortcuts. But just as much as I can’t lose twenty pounds overnight with a magic pill, your sales team isn’t going to suddenly start performing because you bought the latest AI or automation software.

    Sometimes you have to stop searching for the shortcut, and do the work.

    Of course, any good health plan works best when it’s supported by the right tools and equipment. For sales teams, Membrain is the workflow tool that can eliminate point pollution, defeat the Frankenstack, embed enablement content, and enable your teams to execute on the strategies that lead to a truly healthy sales system.

    I would love to show you how.

    George Brontén
    Published August 3, 2022
    By George Brontén

    George is the founder & CEO of Membrain, the Sales Enablement CRM that makes it easy to execute your sales strategy. A life-long entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in the software space and a passion for sales and marketing. With the life motto "Don't settle for mainstream", he is always looking for new ways to achieve improved business results using innovative software, skills, and processes. George is also the author of the book Stop Killing Deals and the host of the Stop Killing Deals webinar and podcast series.

    Find out more about George Brontén on LinkedIn