Don’t Rent Your Sales Competency For Short-Term Success
As an entrepreneur and small business owner, you’re busy as all get-out. While developing a dedicated sales team to take the sales reigns might be on your long-term to-do list, somehow, it never gets done. That’s because it can seem like such a daunting task — especially when you have approximately 500 other pressing priorities on any given day.
Sales tends to be one of the very first things entrepreneurs want to get off their plate. It typically involves facing a world of cold calls and rejection, which is understandably intimidating. Besides, you didn’t start your business to become a salesperson; you started your business to follow your dream and make a difference in the industry.
But hundreds of entrepreneurs make the rookie mistake of not getting great at selling their offerings themselves before attempting to scale their business by adding salespeople. This is what we call “renting your sales competency,” and it’s a huge misstep for new entrepreneurs.
We recommend building your own infrastructure when it comes to sales — and that infrastructure starts with you.
Why Should I Have A Sustainable Sales Competency In Place?
If you don’t have a strong sales structure in place, your customers will notice, your suppliers will notice, and, most importantly, potential investors and lenders will notice.
Lenders and investors are looking for a business that can demonstrate reliable, steady sales growth. Climbing sales numbers might help you get your foot in the door, but if you don’t understand your own sales process, they will see that clear as day.
As the founder of your small business, you need to know exactly how your company generates leads, how you qualify prospects, and how to bring all of that together to make a sale if you want your business to look viable. Lenders need to know your company is a great investment before they dive into their pockets for you. They need to know that they’ll get their money back, as well as a profit.
There’s nothing investors love more than repeatable, predictable, scalable systems and processes. And by learning sales and having that sales competency built into the core of your business, you’ll be able to show them exactly how you check all the boxes.
Does This Mean I Can’t Ever Hire An Outside Sales Team?
It’s not that hiring skilled sales experts is a bad idea. In the short term, those hires can even yield great results. But unless that new sales manager is also actively building a sustainable, scalable system for growing sales, their results will go with them when they leave.
Even at the best jobs, great people choose to pursue new opportunities or retire. The last thing you want is to lose a cornerstone of your business — not to mention a core competency — just because an employee decides it’s time to move on. The only way to avoid this situation is for the sales structure and core competency to be built into the business itself.
How Can I Create My Own Sales Competency?
So, you’re ready to invest in a core sales competency that becomes part of your company’s DNA, but you’re unsure of where to start. Totally understandable! There’s so much sales advice out there, and it can be hard to know what to do first.
Our recommendation? Just get started. Get out there and do a little bit of research. Ask other small business owners you know about their sales processes. Take a free sales training online. And then start executing your strategy to see if it works, all while shifting that process as you experiment and new things comes to light. No one has the perfect answer for how to sell — it depends on what they’re selling. So don’t get hung up on that; just get out there and start somewhere.
If you want your sales structure to last, it needs to be a fundamental part of your business itself. Anyone can hire a great salesperson or rent someone else’s sales talents and skills. But to see that long-term success, you need a great sales foundation that will keep the money flowing in. Happy selling!
Have a question related to this topic or anything else?