This blogs topic is fun. As in, actually about fun. It’s one of my core values, to make sure there’s an element of fun in everything I do.
I’m not talking about the David Brent style of constantly making jokes, which was taken from the real world experiences of that cringeworthy boss everyone seems to know who just wants to me popular. I’m talking about having a culture within your company where people are comfortable enough to be themselves and make contributions.
“I’ve created an atmosphere where I’m a friend first, boss second…probably entertainer third.” David Brent, The Office.
I think a key point to note is that making things fun is only one part of a cultural overhaul which will happen sooner or later, either by your proactive choosing or by regulation, or reaction to your competitors overtaking you.
The reason it is part of a bigger picture is because it fits in with the value-adding sell. The one where you’ll actually only sell to people if they need or want your product. The type of sell where you would recommend people don’t buy it if you don’t think they need it.
Does that sound unfamiliar to you? Are you still in an environment where sales are made to whoever will buy, because that’s how commissions are earned? It’s a short-sighted approach, because the buyers are so unlikely to buy again from a company where they’ve been sold something they didn’t need. They’re also likely to negatively review that company. “I got told I’d need x, but I still haven’t used it in a year.”
You’re rewarding shark-like behaviours, preying upon consumers for commission. And it’s the reason salespeople have a bad reputation.
Collectively, in sales, things need to change, and it needs to come from the leaders who set the cultures. If you change how you’re selling, to needs-based selling, it no longer feels like selling. It starts to feel like helping people. People start to feel good about doing it. They might even…have fun.
There are lots of things you can do to embrace and enhance the positive vibe around work.
Start fitness clubs, organise socials, team-building exercises. The sort of things that in the traditional sales environment, either don’t exist or are begrudgingly attended. Why? Because if people are out of their comfort zone, and let’s face it, hard selling on cold calls is rarely anyone’s comfort zone, the last thing they want to do is spend more time around a culture that revolves around that.
But the second you switch the disc and move towards a positive sales environment which is needs-led and value orientated, people will actively be energised by their work. You can then introduce those fun elements to your work environment to enhance the overall experience which will make your staff happy, not cringe. Now you have a healthy, happy, energised sales team who are providing value to customers, who in turn will appreciate the difference between your company and one which is just trying to make a quick buck out of them. Positive experiences, positive reviews, repeat custom and trusted client bases.
All sounds rather good, doesn’t it?
If you want to discuss more how I can help you to make that a reality in your business, I’m always happy to speak to people who want to improve.
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Steve Knapp is the Founder and Owner of Steve Knapp Sales. With 30+ years of B2B successful sales, sales management and sales leadership experience. Steve created The 5 Principles of Sales Excellence & has used this to drive sustained sales performance in one of the most successful companies in the world. To discuss your sales requirements contact Steve on [email protected]