No one will argue that we live in turbulent times. Our markets and business environments are challenging leaders in ways we have not seen in 50+ years.
In most businesses–actually, in all businesses–this pressure falls squarely on the shoulders of sales managers. Ask any small, medium, or large business owner or executive what they need right now and the answer is consistent: SALES!
That’s what made me say, “yes” so quickly to reviewing the latest book on my reading list:
Turbulent Times Leadership for Sales Managers: How the Very Best Boost Sales
by Tim Connellan
The title certainly nailed the top two things keeping every sales manager in America awake at night: turbulent times and how to boost sales.
However, I’ll be honest I was skeptical when the book arrived and I quickly scanned it. It was brief and prefaced by the fact that it was the “outgrowth of what was originally a two-and-a-half-day seminar.” I won’t hold you in suspense, although I had images of hucksters at Holiday Inn’s selling CDs on the back tables, I was very pleasantly surprised.
My first sigh of relief was that the book was based on real research (I love data driven principles). My second sigh of relief, and the trigger that had me eagerly digging in for real meat that I could us in my own sales processes was a radically different angle on sales leadership…
Connellan reveals a secret, a magical key, which simply pops out when you go looking for examples of high performing individuals.
Now, before I reveal the secret Mr. Connellan uncovered, I want to tell you what I found so intriguing about his approach.
Most sales trainers, coaches, and consultants (guilty–including myself) have a tendency to track down good sales people and start drilling them with the obvious question:
“What do you do to get more sales than your peers.”
Frustratingly, most can’t tell you or they tell you what they think does it, which often isn’t and certainly rarely is a repeatable process.
Connellan doesn’t do that. He seems to know what most of us always feel in our gut.
Good sales people come from good sales environments.
Think about it…you can probably track your best years not to a great business cycle, but to a great selling environment.
This is why Connellan’s secret captivated me…
I’ll give it to you in his words:
“I’ve been researching high performance for over 30 years now, and during one study, I uncovered a compelling statistical pattern. In looking at the backgrounds of high performers, I found that [most were first-borns].”
I gave the punchline there in my own words because Connellan pours on the weighty statistical evidence at this point; the majority of entrepreneurs, astronauts, Supreme Court Justices, female world leaders, US presidents, Rhodes scholars, even top performing students in primary and secondary education all firstborns.
Fortunately, he doesn’t stop there. He turns that statistical factoid into a road map for smart sales managers that need to get their teams to take it up a notch.
Connellan figures out why that firstborn environment gives these lucky children an inherent advantage. Then he teaches us all how to recreate it in our own sales organizations.
I’m not going to give away all of Connellan’s hard work. You really should get the edge directly from him, by buying the book.
However, I can’t resist teasing you with a bit of what I learned.
Connellan breaks this first born, performance nurturing, environment into three pillars:
- Positive expectations
- Responsibility and accountability
I can guarantee you that your sales management approach needs refinement in each of these areas.
Get the Book. Connellan will show you the most efficient path to higher performance and more sales.