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Salespeople: Start Taking Risks Again!
Blog / For Sales Pros / Oct 13, 2015 / Posted by Nikolaus Kimla / 4305 

Salespeople: Start Taking Risks Again!

In the last 20 years or so, automation has taken an enormous role in sales. A mammoth attempt has been made to create a “perfect system” in which leads are sought out, discovered, and served up to salespeople so that all they have to do is sell.

The net result of these efforts, if continued, could ultimately lead to a sales force that no longer takes risks. But the thing is, taking risks is a large part of what made them salespeople to begin with.

The Salespreneur

In many of my blogs and ebooks, I have discussed what I call the salespreneur. I coined this word to point out the fact that a salesperson natively possesses the core qualities of an entrepreneur:

• they strive to create their own lives and incomes
• they perceive opportunities where many do not
• they possess the skill to turn opportunities into wins

But beyond these, a fundamental quality of an entrepreneur is that of being a pioneer: of striking out into a brand new area, finding prospects, turning those prospects into opportunities and those opportunities into customers.

A true salespreneur does the same thing—goes out, discovers where there would be prospects, engages them, interests them, closes sales by solving their issues and makes them into customers.

The Real Survivor

A salespreneur functioning in this way does not depend on the “lead machine” of their company. While they can certainly take advantage of leads provided to them, they can also create their own. If the “lead machine” falters for whatever reason, the salespreneur—the real survivor—just keeps right on going. The salespreneur therefore always has a sustainable pipeline.

The primary difference is someone who is reacting versus someone who is acting. The salespreneur, instead of only reacting to inbound leads, is acting to create their own leads.

This way of functioning has a consistently positive effect on both the salespeople themselves and on the sales force and company that employs them. The risk factor for the salespreneur themselves is lower, simply because they are not waiting for leads but is always making them.

The Customer Experience

The salespreneur has learned, among others, a very valuable skill: the creation of a positive experience for the buyer.

A salespreneur is not simply selling a product. They are taking the time to get to know the buyer, understand their issues and the issues of the company, and how the seller’s product would solve these issues. The salespreneur is walking the buyer through the process of this understanding so that the buyer fully comprehends exactly how the seller’s solution applies.

The Perfect Customer

You might notice—and maybe you’ve noticed in the real world—that the “perfect customer” is something that is created by the salespreneur, not just “found.” The customer is steered to understand their issues and how the seller’s solution addresses them, and in that way becomes the “perfect customer.”

Meanwhile, the marketing automation industry is spending billions of dollars attempting to locate that “perfect customer” that can simply be served up to the salesperson.

Which do you think will win in the end: the salespreneur – salesperson actually creating opportunities, or someone who just watches a smartphone waiting for that opportunity to arrive?

Not Afraid of “No”

Another major attribute of the risk-taking salespreneur is that they learned long ago that the risk of “no” was part of the game. It’s part of taking risks. Hence that salespreneur is far less afraid to start up a conversation, no matter where they are, as they’re not afraid of the prospect saying “no.”

Pipeliner Helps Salespeople Navigate

How does Pipeliner CRM fit in to the operation of a true salespreneur? Simple: it helps you navigate the risk.

Because of Pipeliner’s visual, intuitive functionality, you can always see at a glance which are the best opportunities, where they stand, what needs to happen to bring them to closes. You can easily see, at any time, the risk involved in engaging any opportunity.

Find out how Pipeliner CRM helps you assess and utilize risk. Get your free trial of Pipeliner CRM now.
Stay tuned for my next blog on taking risk!

About Author

A 30-year veteran of the computer industry, Nikolaus has founded and run several software companies. He and his company uptime iTechnology are the developers of World-Check, a risk intelligence platform eventually sold to Thomson Reuters for $520 million. He is currently the founder and CEO of Pipelinersales, Inc., developer and publisher of Pipeliner CRM, the first CRM application aimed squarely at actually empowering salespeople. Also a prolific writer, Nikolaus has authored over 100 ebooks, articles and white papers addressing the subjects of sales management, leadership and sales itself.

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