Engage

HAVE YOUR SAY. Engage with the Journal. This is the place where you can make a comment on any issue concerning the world of sales. Or ask a question and we’ll try to find an answer. (This area is curated by admins.)

Easier continuing professional development

June 25th, 2019 by

CPD is vital in today’s sales world, and the “Journal” is aiming to help. Continuing professional development is widely recognised as fundamental to the improvement of standards and skills for individuals, their industries and professions. Yet, until recently, CPD has not been top of the agenda in sales. Why? Let’s face it, sales may be the world’s oldest profession, but… 


The High Street isn’t dead

June 25th, 2019 by

Lessons from Birmingham’s new Primark megastore. Primark’s new Birmingham flagship proves that stores still have a vital role to play in shopping journeys. But one store opening – albeit a great one – doesn’t spell the beginning of the end of pressure on the High Street. The discount fashion retailer’s megastore opening drew big crowds in April and demonstrates its… 


Addressing the UK’s sales shame

March 21st, 2019 by

To boost productivity it’s vital for companies to embrace an “everybody sells” approach and to harness the “hidden sales force” that is an energised customer service department. The UK is suffering a productivity crisis. Start-up companies and total early-stage entrepreneurial activity are still booming, but the number of high-growth companies in the UK has been steadily declining in the past… 


Towards a healthier sales model

December 18th, 2018 by

Pharma needs to transform the way it engages customers if it is to adapt to disruption in the healthcare landscape. For the past 20 years, I have been involved in pharma discussions regarding the need to radically change our sales and engagement model. The pharma industry has shifted from defining its customers as the physicians prescribing to patients to a… 


2018: another step toward sales professionalisation

November 13th, 2018 by

It’s all change for 2018, and much of it for the better. Next year will be a big one for the sales profession globally. As an international publication with a global readership – we already have readers in over 30 countries – we see evidence of a new sales professionalism developing around the world. Here in the UK, 2018 will… 


Countdown to the new Journal

September 21st, 2018 by

A new resource to help you be agile and resilient. The whole sales world is evolving. There’s disruption in the marketplace. Change is unremitting and relentless. It keeps gathering pace. Our customers require increasing attention and sophistication in our approach. Every sales situation is contextually unique. There are greater and greater demands on our time. Needs and solutions can sometimes… 


Lessons from the souq

September 21st, 2018 by

Techniques passed down the generations in ancient trading centres are still relevant today. Dating back some 5,000 years, Aleppo in Syria is one of the oldest continuously habited cities in the world. It was there that my wife Louise and I met Mohammed, a textile trader, six months before the civil war began in the summer of 2011. Mohammed offered… 


Using data to drive effective coaching

May 17th, 2018 by

Organisations understand the power of coaching and the importance of data to inform this activity. But could it lead to a zombie sales force? What is the difference between coaching and training? This is often poorly understood. As a starter, we might consider that training is about transferring knowledge while coaching is about enhancing that knowledge and developing people and… 


Prioritizing diverse perspectives

May 17th, 2018 by

Here’s how both women and men can help sales organizations achieve gender equality to build success. Most industry outsiders I encounter view our industry as a corporate boys’ club. It’s a common misperception that sales has a shortage of women. In fact, the sales industry as a whole is almost evenly split on gender lines, with women making up 49… 


Time to fix the sales apprenticeship logjam

March 25th, 2018 by

Teething problems and delays with the UK’s sales apprenticeship programme are frustrating employers. At the time of writing in early March, it is National Apprenticeship Week in the UK. This time last year – during the 2017 National Apprenticeship Week – there was considerable excitement that the standards for the first-ever degree apprenticeship in B2B sales would swiftly be approved…. 


With diversity comes great story responsibility

March 25th, 2018 by

Diversity brings the risk of fragmentation, but the best companies are able to project a single voice by telling a consistently engaging story. Today, an employee base with diverse experiences, skills and perspectives is one of your biggest organizational strengths. But like many good things, a diverse talent pool, for all the brainpower and energy and dynamism it adds to… 


Finding new ways to win new customers

December 13th, 2017 by

In the current uncertain climate it’s time for UK businesses to sell big, sell global and stay relevant. The pace of technological progression and the impact of globalisation are increasingly disorienting. Society One is one of the world’s fastest-growing lenders, but does not own the money it loans; Google is the world’s largest software vendor but it doesn’t own any… 


Is your organisation leaking value?

November 20th, 2017 by

The spiral of value leakage starts when organisations fail to focus on the customer and what they value. Instead, businesses should focus on creating “infinite value”. Peter Drucker is famous for making the following observation: “Because the purpose of a business is to create a customer, the business enterprise has two (and only two) basic functions: marketing and innovation.” If… 


Apprenticeship plan lights way forward for sales

April 22nd, 2017 by

New milestone passed on the route to sales professionalism. Momentous change is happening everywhere. It’s manifest in business, in politics, through the ebb and flow of people and talent around the world, in the climate, and not least in the advent of technology – and this is just as true in the world of selling as it is in other… 


Transforming sales is not enough

April 22nd, 2017 by

If you’re serious about growth, transform marketing too. A few years ago, I was part of the management team that rapidly grew a mature outsourcing business in just one year, while increasing profitability too. Our strategy was to shift from being a reactive business, waiting for RFPs to arrive, to a proactive one targeting the specific accounts that would deliver… 


The new age of sales enlightenment

January 28th, 2017 by

2017 looks set to be a landmark on the road to sales professionalism. Could 2017 be a turning point for the sales profession? There are a number of factors that play into this question. First of all, we can see inescapable signs of the growing importance of sales roles within a wider business context. Equally, there is an increasing emphasis… 


Digital bolt-ons not an instant service solution

January 28th, 2017 by

Although social media is becoming the customer services platform of choice for large organisations, many are not getting the basics right. The rise of social media (Facebook, Twitter, Facebook Messenger) is driving change in the way customer-service leaders manage their operation. In today’s digital world, customers are more fickle, delight in sharing their horror stories, and demand an instantaneous response…. 


Introducing the Digital Sales Funnel

November 29th, 2016 by

Introduced in 1898, the traditional purchase funnel no longer applies. Sales needs a lead-generation model for the digital environment. There is one perennial truth in sales and that is, salespeople have to prospect in the places their customers inhabit. This has led salespeople to visit exhibitions and conferences, attend relevant networking events and even knock on the doors at certain… 


A battle of ideologies

September 3rd, 2016 by

In the main, businesspeople and especially salespeople are a pragmatic bunch. They’re resilient, happy to take things in their stride, and seek opportunity whatever the circumstances. All of which came across in our post-referendum Brexit survey conducted in conjunction with a number of world-class organisations. What also became apparent was that the sentiment of the majority of respondents was largely… 


Sales Leadership: the dynamic management of paradoxes

September 3rd, 2016 by

Leading modern sales forces requires us to develop synergies between paradoxes that may initially appear irreconcilable. I’m aboard the “Baie de Seine”, the ferry that covers the route Portsmouth–Bilbao. I am sitting at the back of the vessel watching the foamy trace it leaves on the sea and the seagulls that escort the ship, relentlessly defying the winds. It’s a…