IS YOUR TEAM MOST RED, YELLOW, BLUE OR GREEN?
To build a successful sales team you need to have sales reps. with expert areas that overlap and complement each other. To perform each step in the sales process in the best possible way, it’s often required to have a specific behavior style to handle each task.
Since different behavior styles are strong performers on different things, you need to analyze your needs depending on what you sell, how you sell, to whom you sell and sometimes also where you are selling.
To create the best possible conditions to become successful as a team you need a combination of different behavior styles that strengthen each other. When you have that combination you can get synergies that can change the laws of mathematics (1 + 1 = 3).
RED, YELLOW, BLUE OR GREEN
If you have ever asked a sales rep. “what happened with the lost deal” or “where are they in the process”, you probably experienced highly subjective answers to your questions.
Actually, their answers will probably be more influenced by their behaviour style than the pure facts of the case at hand.
Here are some typical answers for each behavioural style (according to DISC; the BLUE, the YELLOW, the RED and the GREEN) to the question referring to progress in sales process:
- RED REP: I am through to the next round, as expected.
- YELLOW REP: We are one out of four through to the next round. They (the customers) are really nice though and I am positive they like me! Perhaps we should have lunch with them?
- GREEN REP: The customer has informed us that we are 1 of 4 through to the next round. Now we wait a couple of days until we make contact.
- BLUE REP: I didn’t get to the second round in the tender! Four other competitors are through to the second round. I have the law on my side though and I will sue them.
Above you have a customer case, with examples of how different behavior styles typically can react to, and perceive, the same piece of information from the same customer.
SHORT INTRODUCTION TO DIFFERENT BEHAVIOURS
The red person (D) is acting fast on every activity, following the “why wait?”-methodology. In business, the D-person likes speed and keeping a high activity level, and is utterly sure these are the keys to success.
In a team, others could have difficulties catching up and seeing the same picture as the red person. For a red person it is vital to keep their focus on the target and get things moving.
The yellow person (I) is always thinking of the softer values in the business. Like having a lunch before and after the decision is made. They often act on activities based on how they feel.
Since time often is a critical factor, sometimes the yellow sales rep misses out on opportunities simply because they didn’t have the necessary focus and pace.
The green person (S) is always acting in a planned manner, especially if they have already agreed on something with the customer. Speed isn’t a word you would associate with green persons.
You can be sure they do their homework though, properly too.
The blue person(C) should have put in more communication and face time/meetings with the customer before the customer made their decision. Instead the blue starts a discussion and puts the necessary energy after the decision is taken.
Our article about how to handle a blue person during a sales meeting, that can be very useful !
In this example, the blue person could drop it. But now it’s a matter of prestige.
In business decisions you can’t take too much feelings into consideration. You need to make sure everyone is focusing on the most important tasks, every day. Tasks that are according to their behaviour profile are suitable to perform.
The reason of this is the (Red, Yellow, Blue, Green) behaviour styles’ approach and reaction to the same opportunity, as mentioned above. Put the wrong behaviour on the wrong activity and progress will be hard to gain, however, put the right behaviour on the right activity and it’s more likely you’ll see success.
ANALYZE YOUR NEEDS AND BECOME SUCCESSFUL
When setting up a sales process you therefore need to make sure every step in the process is analyzed from a behavioural perspective. What behaviour is the most suitable for every particular activity or step?
To hold an engaging presentation or negotiating a contract requires very different behaviour styles. A bi-effect of the analyzing might be that you realize the need for multiple processes to fully support your way of working.
So, if you have mapped your needs in terms of
- What steps do you have in your different sales processes
- What behavioural styles do you need to maximize each step
Then you also need to put, or recruit, the right reps. to set the different teams to deliver according to your targets and processes.
Is this all though? Is it enough to only look to the softer parts of selling, like how the team is set up, individual skills, processes behaviour styles etc. to become successful?
No, even so their importance you also need to have the right set of tools to be able to perform on a top level. Even the best carpenter cannot drill a whole with a hammer.
BUSINESS TOOLS SHOULD SUPPORT MOBILE COLLABORATION
Most sales teams use some kind of support tools. Some unstructured on an individual basis like notebooks, spread sheets, contact registers, a phone etc. Some work more structured on a team basis with a common CRM system.
However, there is a difference between the historic support gained from CRMs and the one of modern CRMs, especially when it comes to supporting a collaborative and proactive way of working.
A modern CRM isn’t only about looking for historic statistics and keeping your contacts in a register. A modern CRM is about giving you proactive and collaborative business support wherever you are. Basically being a tool to empower both you and your team.
A modern CRM helps you stay focused when your day starts, even after hanging up the phone after a call, after a meeting. It tells you what behavioural style, the one performing the next task should have, what behavioural style your contact has.
A modern CRM makes it easy for you to work and collaborate according to behavioural science’s progress on how we behave and what we are most suitable to focus on.
If you are a sales rep, a modern CRM becomes like your own personal trainer (PT) in the pocket. One that reminds you and keeps pushing you a little bit further, exactly like some training apps can do when we’re exercising.
IT IS NOT ENOUGH TO DO YOUR BEST; YOU MUST KNOW WHAT TO DO, AND THEN DO YOUR BEST
– W. Edwards Deming
If you are a Sales Manager, a modern CRM puts you up a level. You become the true commander of sales as you get real-time overview and control. A modern CRM does many of the daily basic things you want to tell your team members, yet that you don’t have the time for.
If you and your team start using a modern CRM with built-in support for different behavioural styles, you will have more time for the things that makes your company grow. Since a modern collaborative CRM also keeps everybody updated wherever they are, it will become clear where you need to add some extra support and coaching.
A modern CRM gives both sales reps. and directors more relevant and focused reports and information on a level that historically was impossible to reach. Your weekly meetings will be full of energy and focus on the coming activities and who in the team has the most suitable behavioural style for each activity.
A modern CRM gives both sales reps. and directors total control. Not the “police state” kind of control, yet rather positive control. The feeling you get when personal control is positive. You know what is expected; you know how far you’ve come in your sales process and exactly what to do to move forward.
Living in unawareness and basing most of the decisions on guessing is not good for the feelings in the team. Knowing-your-numbers create clarity and clarity creates a sense of power and that creates winners who close more deals and grows companies.
A WELL PREPARED SALES TEAM LOOKS FORWARD TO THE NEXT SALES MEETING
Since a modern CRM gives knowledge and clarity, the sales teams are always well prepared and look forward to the next Monday morning sales meeting.
They will leave these meetings full of energy, instead starting off the week with lowered heads and a drained energy. There are very few things as empowering as knowing you’re the right person to do your job, and also knowing how to tackle situations that might occur.
When you think about it, it’s quite obvious that very few CRMs have been built from this perspective. Nor from the experience about what type of support is needed, to be able to work efficiently in teams, out in the field, with real-time information sharing, i.e. all those things that make you as a team really strong and able to grow your company.