Selling effectively with the Insights sales process

Insights into the sales process

Do your sales people follow a defined sales process. Or do they just leave it to chance?

Have you ever dealt with a client or company you couldn’t seem to connect with? One where you tried everything you could think of, but still made little progress and fewer sales?

It’s a frustrating experience and one which has nothing to do with your selling skills or your sales process. It’s to do with personality types and your flexibility of behaviour. We all like to think we are completely independent making up our own minds about how to behave.  But psychologists tell us that by the age of 20, most of our behaviour is unconscious. We simply respond in a habitual way to various kinds of stimuli.

One of the most useful things I learnt during my corporate sales career was that by adapting my behaviour, I was able to connect with more people. Obviously not something known to a former manager, who once told me that sales is simply a numbers game.  To increase my sales I had to follow the sales process and get out and meet more people. Not an economical or effective way of increasing sales compared to understanding my own behaviour and that of others.

For those who want to improve their results, have fun while selling and understand their customers’ needs more fully, there is a system which has proved invaluable to me and many of my training and coaching clients. That system is Insights Discovery ®.

The Insights Discovery ® system uses a series of questions about your behaviour preferences to identify your personality type. These are based on the levels of four different energies known as Cool Blue, Earth Green, Fiery Red and Sunshine Yellow.

The colour and description of each energy is not accidental.  Each helps to identify and describe that energy. The diagram below will give you more idea about where you and others sit around the Insights Wheel. The left side of the Wheel shows the two energies which tend towards introversion That means they draw their energy from inside and tend to be quiet. The right side shows the more extrovert energies,. That means they gain energy from other people and tend to be loud.

Insights sales process

Insights colour energies in selling – Fiery Red, Cool Blue, Earth Green and Sunshine Yellow

You may already be getting a sense of your own predominant energy and that of close family and colleagues. Clues are available in everything a person says and does. Which energy do you think is most likely to have a very tidy and organised desk? Which will prefer traditional business dress and which is more likely to prefer to dress down? Who will greet you effusively and who will have a more tentative handshake?

While we all possess all of the four energies, we have them in unique proportions. A person’s preferred, or strongest, energy influences their behaviour at work. Each colour energy has its strengths and weaknesses, depending on the situation and your perspective! You may find that different colour energies are predominant in different situations, at home and work, for example.

A Fiery Red manager may be respected by an Earth Green team member for his determination and go-ahead attitude.  They may have difficulty in providing the support and encouragement that the Earth Green person needs to reach targets. In challenging times, the Earth Green may appear to the Fiery Red manager as stubborn and uncommunicative.

Most of you probably have a sales process which you follow, either consciously or unconsciously. Depending on your colour preference, you will find some parts of the sales process more stimulating than others.

I recently worked with a sales team made up of people who had a preference for Blue and Green energy, who were not reaching their targets for sales visits. Their Red manager was at his wits’ end. Why did they not just make a call and ask for an appointment? To him it was glaringly obvious.

The Blue and Green team, however, tend towards introversion and were uncomfortable with the idea of forcing themselves on the client. They saw this as being intrusive and kept putting off the calls. We discussed the problem in terms of them helping and supporting the client by explaining their services and how they could solve the clients’ problems. Once they got that idea they were able to operate from their natural energy and started to make the calls. An almost 100% success rate in securing appointments encouraged them to continue!

I have worked with teams where communication has all but broken down and overt conflict arisen. This was all due to each individual having their own perspective and not being able to appreciate others’ points of view. Having looked at Insights, they began to realise that their colleagues were not necessarily stupid or deliberately obstructive. They just had another way of dealing with life.

They were wired differently from them!

We like people who are like us! If you can treat others, not as you would like to be treated, but as they would like to be treated, you have a much greater chance of establishing a successful relationship. Insights provides a valuable tool for understanding first yourself, and then the people you come into contact with.

Contact me if you would like to further explore this fascinating Insights ® system by obtaining your own personality type profile, which will detail your strengths, weaknesses, blind spots and areas for development. it will also introduce you to a 6-step sales process and show what parts of that process that you will shine or struggle with.

More information on Insights and Profiling here.

Posted in: Insights Discovery

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