Put people before technology in your prospecting.

Digital isn’t a sales strategy, hope is not a strategy, referrals are not a strategy, marketing is not a strategy. Sales strategy isn’t yours or mine. It’s your company’s strategy for attracting customers. Not much has changed over the years. An executive reads the latest book and declares the precepts in the book are the company’s new strategy. Employees ignore these flash-in-the-pan announcements, because they know another new book and strategy will come along soon.

People don’t understand precepts and are not engaged by big ideas—unless leaders translate vision into sales strategy and explain what it means for every function in the company. If you leave it to your employees to figure things out, I guarantee that nothing will change. Well, something will change. People will begin to ignore what you say and chalk it up to the message of the day.

On the other hand, if you can clearly communicate both your vision for success and your strategy for getting there, you can inspire everyone involved to work towards your goal. For example, President John F. Kennedy toured the NASA Space Center shortly after he announced his vision for sending a man to the moon and back safely by the end of the decade. Towards the end of his visit, Kennedy came upon a janitor mopping the floor. He asked the janitor, “What’s your job?”

The man responded, “I’m helping put a man on the moon.” That is the result of clear, concise, and transferable communication from the leader of the free world. (Admittedly, there is some debate about whether this story is true, but regardless of whether you believe it, the answer is priceless.)

What does this mean for sales leaders? Lior Arussy answers that question in his post, “Why Your Bold 2019 Strategy Is D.O.A. By February, And How To Fix It.” The title of the post is startling and applies to any year. This quote is even more disturbing: “If you are like most organizations (which most organizations are, by definition), you have a 1 in 10 chance of strategy success. That’s not much to bet on.”

Your sales strategy is your legacy. You’ll either succeed, or not. Read Arussy’s post for a contrarian message about strategy and why you’d better pay attention.

And for a contrarian point of view about cold calling, register for my FREE 28-minute webinar: Score Meetings with Prospects in One Call. You’ll find out why you aren’t getting the referrals you think you should—and what to do about it. Can’t attend live on February 28? Register anyway. You’ll receive the recording.

(Featured image attribution: Pixabay)