• This Blog Is Inactive!

    On of May 8, 2009, I moved my blog over to a new domain: DaveSteinsBlog.ESResearch.com

    I will no longer be posting on this URL. Comments will not be moderated. More information.

  • ESR’s STVG

    Here is ESR's highly acclaimed Sales Training Vendor Guide, Third Edition.

I’m Presenting At The Sales 2.0 Conference In Boston. Join Me.

boston_7000_feet3I’m delighted to be both presenting and participating in a panel discussion at the Sales 2.0 Conference in Boston on May 21st.

Using recent research from ESR’s Sales Training Vendor Guide, I’ll talk specifically about technology-enabled learning—how technology is changing learning and why today, effective sales learning requires technology.

I’ve not been shy in voicing my concerns about the some of the hype and lofty expectations around Sales 2.0 and the distraction that it causes for some of our client companies struggling through the kinds of sales challenges that Sales 2.0 approaches and tools can’t immediately overcome.

At the same time substantive progress is being made on the technology front.  ESR has given credit to those companies who are making real contributions to sales effectiveness through technology-enabled learning and technology-enabled selling—companies like Kadient, Richardson, The TAS Group, SPI, Holden, White Springs, Primary Intelligence, The Brooks Group, Miller Heiman, LinkedIn, ZoomInfo, Jigsaw, Lucidera, and many more.

As a researcher and analyst, I’ll be in learning mode at the conference as well.  I’m looking forward to understanding more about the approaches and solutions of the companies presenting and sponsoring this event, and learning from those sales leaders who will be attending it.  Please introduce yourselves to me.

Hope to see you there.  If you can’t attend, I’ll keep you informed through Twitter.

Photo credit:  (c) 2008 Dave Stein — Boston from 7000 feet
Donate $25 or more to the human rights charity Witness.org, email your receipt to me,
and I’ll send you the full-size jpg of this photo.  dave.stein @ ESResearch.com
Make sure your credit card number is not on the receipt, please.

Coaching Sales People

Name one professional athelete that doesn't have a coach.

Quiz: Name one professional athelete that doesn't have a coach.

Coaching is the component of a sales effectiveness initiative that is most often sacrificed when costs must be contained.  (More accurately, coaching workshops and post-program reinforcement for first-line sales managers are what gets cut.)  Considering that coaching is the most important single mechanism for reinforcing and sustaining the impact of learning, this is a big problem. 

During a podcast interview I recorded Tuesday with Barry Trailer, partner with CSO Insights, the subject of coaching came up.  Barry feels as strongly about the subject as I do.  He considers getting a coach to be the first step on the path to sales mastery.  Both Barry and I have had coaches during our careers.  We agreed that if a salesperson is serious about selling as a lifetime career, then hiring a coach on their own, if their company won’t provide one, is mandatory.

Coaching is a skill.  It can be learned. The impact of coaching on an individual salesrep’s performance can and should be measured.  In my view coaching is a required capability for a sales manager.  It’s right up there in importance with hiring.  HR Chally’s The 2007 Chally World Class Sales Excellence Research Report  states, “World class sales forces implement processes and measurements to make coaching a top priority.” Continue reading