You either love doing it or hate it but New Business is an integral part of every sales cycle regardless of the industry or product. It takes a certain type of person with the right mentality to do a new business focused role but is this something you can learn. But just what sort of person and skills do you need to be suited to doing new business?
Thick skinned for a start – carrying out hundreds of call to get through to those few people who say yes can be soul destroying if you don’t have the right outlook. Excellent communication skills? Absolutely! If you have to speak to new people and make a great first impression not just of yourself but the company you represent then you have to be able to carry a good conversation and instantly build rapport.
What about the ability to multi-task? If you have to carry out a certain number of calls a day or be on the phone for a set number of hours each week then spending half of your time trying to figure out who to call next is not going to be the answer.
It’s elementary Holmes! One of the best ways of describing what a high level new business professional has to do was to compare it to being Sherlock Holmes – you need to investigate and scrutinise the feedback you are getting back from the person on the other end of the phone and try to find that killer point that will persuade the potential client to engage with your further.
The number of cold calls that are received by us in our everyday lives – PPI claims, phone networks, broadband sales is incredibly high but next time you receive one of these calls stop and think How would I do this call differently? Are they asking lots of closed questions or not truly listening to the answers you are giving back? Once you have identified what they might be doing wrong then try listening to yourself the next time you make that sales call and you could be surprised by the same mistakes that you are making as well.
Most people assume that doing a new business role is the bottom of the food chain when considered against other types of sales jobs such as account management but this highly specialised role can reap the talented New Business professional plenty of financial reward.
Can you learn to do this role and develop the right mentality? Given time yes but most people can learn the skills and how to speak on the phone but can’t last the time needed to generate that thick skin to handle rejection. Marmite job? Absolutely!!