For the last several years, the focus for business management has been finding ways to drive down cost – and there’s been no shortage of highly skilled individuals with significant expertise and experience in cutting every possible penny.
Now, senior leadership is realizing there is little left to cut. Building top-line revenue is the primary focus, and as a result, “Sales Transformation” has become the catch phrase for virtually every C-level executive.
Unfortunately, if you ask 10 different executives what “Sales Transformation” means, you may get 10 different answers. Few, if any, have successfully transformed. Sales are still flat, margins continue to erode and salesforce turnover remains high. Unlike the plentiful group of cost cutters, there is a dearth of people who truly understand how to effectively drive profitable revenue growth.
In The Journey to Sales Transformation, sales and business expert Bob Nicols, Jr. explains exactly what organizations need to do to address these challenges. Told through the fictional parables and lessons learned by his characters, the story provides a set of twenty-five truths that help define the hot business topic of “Sales Transformation” and act as a self-assessment for any organization trying to drive higher revenue and margins by becoming the best partner for their customers.
In “The Journey to Sales Transformation: Twenty-Five Axioms for Becoming a Trusted Partner to your Customers”, Bob Nicols guides readers through the challenges associated with transforming sales organizations from being qualified vendors to becoming trusted partners for their customers.
Told through the fictional parables and the lessons learned by his characters, the story provides a set of 25 truths that help define the hot business topic of “Sales Transformation” and acts as a self-assessment for any organization trying to drive higher revenue and margins by becoming the best partner for their customers.
When a struggling technology company fires its Chief Sales Officer (CSO), the Board of Directors decides a “sales transformation” is required. Two candidates emerge as finalists for the CSO position. Phillip Evan Hawthorne is an up-and-coming, aggressive Sales VP from another high-flying technology company. Phillip’s self-assured style and ability to bring in fresh talent makes him an appealing candidate. His only rival, Ben Delaney, is a retired Chief Sales Officer with no technology experience but a track record of consistent performance. Ben also has a penchant for storytelling as a means of sharing the truth about selling and possesses one big secret that only Phillip could truly appreciate.
Interviewing for the position on the same day, Ben and Phillip are forced to sit in the same waiting area where their dramatically different personalities collide. As an agitated Phillip paces the room, Ben shares a story that Phillip is certain has no relevance for him or any other sane businessperson with a healthy sense of urgency.
What he will soon find is that this is just the first of many stories Ben will share, each with an important and timely lesson for Phillip or anyone seeking to transform sales performance and customer relationships. Phillip ultimately wins the CSO position, but finds his aggressive management style and approach of replacing underperforming people isn’t addressing the company’s fundamental sales issues. That’s when Phillip accepts what he believes to be a chance invitation to a cookout where he has the opportunity to meet with Ben.
Seeing the relevance in Ben’s stories and desperate to transform his own sales organization and deliver the results his board expects, Phillip decides to meet with Ben more regularly. As the two men embark on a journey to transformation, Philip listens to Ben’s stories about things like fish fries, African proverbs, talent show judges, Homebuilders and Little League coaches. Through multiple revelations, Phil begins to transition his sales organization from one that delivers sub par performance using a random approach, to a high performance team utilizing clearly defined, formal processes for selling and sales management. Meanwhile, he undergoes his own personal transformation, as he not only comes to terms with his own challenges as a leader, but also his emotionally painful past.
Nicols says his company’s clients were the driving force behind this, his first book. For more than twenty years they have looked to his company, AXIOM Sales Force Development, to help them transform their own sales teams. These same customers validated the fundamental principles shared in the book. The result is a compelling read that will help senior executives, sales leaders and even individual salespeople transform their customer relationships and sales performance.