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Sales Intelligence

Many mid-tier sales reps believe they know how to sell.  Through will and determination, they get the job done.  When the market is in decline, these reps fail.  When the market is growing, they sell enough to get by.  Here is the problem. The representative does not know what she does not know about sales. Her boss does not know any more than the sales representative when it comes to high-level skills required to master the sales profession.  Unless the boss was a high-performing sales professional herself, she does not know what the sales team needs to know and do to be successful.

Together, they both believe more work is the solution.  More calls, visits, or emails only lead to unsuccessful outcomes and added frustration.  Working harder is not the solution.  More ineffective emails or calls will not help and can make things worse by poisoning the desperate sales representative in the buyer's mind.  If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.  More ineffective work is not the solution.

Top sales professionals are successful in four areas of intelligence.  When the market becomes challenging, weakness in these four areas becomes more visible.  Sales ability growth can happen in three out of four.

The first area of sales intelligence is innate intelligence or (intelligence quotient) IQ.  This area is how smart you are.  It is your mental ability to think and reason.  IQ score is a standardized way of comparing this ability with most people the same age as you are. While you can move this number somewhat over time, it is more related to genetic ability.  You cannot do much to improve another's level of intelligence.  It generally is what it is.  Think border collies versus basset hounds as a comparison in the dog universe.

The second area of sales intelligence is...

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