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Pending Business: Time for a Skills Inventory

| December 7, 2020

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp


PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — The president-elect is requesting a 100-day, mask-on effort with a COVID-19 vaccine for the masses possibly starting by Q2 2021. Seems the sales road ahead will be a maze impacted by the unpredictable timelines of recovery.

The time to start assessing personal sales skills is today. Taking a hard look into your skills mirror will need a regular reboot for the next 14 months.

Take a minute to rank the three sales skills your manager can easily identify as your defining qualities. Will those skills translate to the 2021 ever-changing sales environment?

For over 10 years, one of my highest-earning sellers was unmatched when positioned face-to-face with a client or prospect. This seller was so successful that every competitor locally and regionally took a run at recruitment. Fortunately for us, when competitors saw the W-2, it was lights out.

Preparation, quality appointments, and in-person presentation were the secret keys to the seller’s success. “Just get me in front of _____ and I’ll close the business” was the mantra. This seller learned early on, the more in-person visibility combined with better preparation, the higher the chances of winning the business. We worked and worked on those three skills. Fast forward to the current pandemic-impacted, mask-on sales environment. How many of that great seller’s skills would translate? Zoom (or whatever your station uses) is the new meeting standard. Email proposals and staggered WFH are a universal theme. “Just get me in front of _____ and I’ll close the business” has a whole new meaning.

For most, selling in 2021 will be different from this year. The skills necessary for success will require mental flexibility, lean-in on digital, with a super-focus on tech savvy communication that will change regularly. Team meetings have a new dynamic.

Legendary companies that built their sales teams on in-person sales calls are now dinosaurs. So, prioritize your online interaction and develop fast follow-up that is easy to understand as you make key sales points. Review your sales proposals carefully before you send and filter these questions:

Do your proposals drill down on three or four key benefits that are mission critical to your client? Product overkill is over.

Are you offering viable options?

Have you packaged the full resources of your station?

Every seller needs a year-end review, not only with your manager but also with your mirror.

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.  Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy.  Contact Steve Lapa via email at: 

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Category: Sales