What we are Learning (re-learning) about What it takes to be A GREAT salesperson

At Drexel, we have ventured deep into the heart of the world of Sales as it relates to Building Supply dealers like us.

What’s the best Salesperson (we call QB) what’s the best approach?

Our industry has primarily in the Midwest taught us, that great salespeople are entrepreneurs (white males over 40 years old) with 10 plus years of construction experience with as many accounts as possible, making as much money as possible with assistants around them to make their stressful life somewhat easier.

The entire organization is on edge because you never know what they will demand next… because DAMMIT, THEY ARE THE SALESMAN!

We have gone a 180 on that path.

Where QBs have a clear team mindset, with a select few true building partners, they are relaxed and lead from the back AND front and truly help the entire organization get better on a daily basis.

What do I mean exactly?

I am still learning and re-learning as I go, even after 25 years. But I can see what we call a model 1 salesperson (wild west, set their own prices, products procedures, and services) if they portray the following behaviors:s

  1. Use the words: I, me a lot. Use phrases, my accounts, my book of business, my customer. They want to be left alone, unless they come to ask for help. And when they come for help, they really just mean, I want someone else to fix it.
  2. They hate tracking tools, and performance metrics outside of sales/gross margin dollars. They believe gross margin dollars are king. If that is good, leave me alone.
  3. They reference the good old days a lot.
  4. They refuse to believe in less is more. Any sale is a good sale.
  5. They work at least 50 hours a week.
  6. They are really stressed.
  7. They like to believe they have a DIRECT TEAM THAT ONLY REPORTS TO THEM.
  8. They actually have teammates that also believe that.
  9. Their priorities are EVERYONE’S priorities, instantly.
  10. They always want everyone else to be trained, but personally have no time for training.
  11. They refuse to believe they have too many accounts and believe all accounts buy from THEM, not Drexel.
  12. E-mails are constant. Texts are endless.
  13. Skeptical of new products.
  14. Hate refined procedures.
  15. Dislike price tiers.
  16. HAVE NO TIME.

Model 2

  1. We. Team. Us.
  2. 40-hour workweeks.
  3. Responsible for their work.
  4. Time to train. Time to coach.
  5. Like tools to track like closing tools. Like performance reviews. See ways to get better.
  6. Like to be PART of the solution, not simply defining the problem and walking away.
  7. Embrace anything that makes their life easier, like processes and procedures.
  8. Have time to read company information, and develop relationships outside their department.
  9. Sell all categories to our accounts.
  10. HAVE TIME.

We want people that are developed with each account and spend TIME with them and our team. Those team members embrace this and understand a less stressed life is better for them, their family, their team, and their customer!

If this offends you… you are firmly model 1. We should all be inspired to be moving to a model 2 company!

One thought on “What we are Learning (re-learning) about What it takes to be A GREAT salesperson

  1. Hi Joel,
    I like how you always cut to the chase and lay out the issues clearly and frankly. Sales professional #2 creates the most balanced and sustainable workplace ecosystem. What you describe as sales professional #2 reminds me of two powerful books that you have probably read, The Go-Giver, and Go-Givers Sell More, both by Bob Burg and John David Mann. (If you haven’t read them, I encourage you to do so.)
    Keep up the great work at Drexel! And please keep sharing through your blog. 😊👏👍
    Warm regards…Stephen Robertstad.

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