How to sell as much as you can, as quickly as you can

Selling is the world’s second oldest profession … often disguised as the first. It is also a noble profession, designed to:

  • Get the right products to the right people, in the right place, and at the right time
  • Drive continual innovation and improvement
  • Help people get what they need in order to be successful and happy in their lives

Yet a tragedy has happened involving this distinguished profession over the last couple of hundred years: as mechanisation and one way mass media has dominated the world of commerce, this over supply of goods has severely warped traditional sales… to such an extent where ‘selling’ has almost become a dirty word.

And marketing is in the same boat (as marketing is just a part of selling).

This shows up in behaviours (from both individuals and organisations) such as:

  • Quick fix ‘selling techniques’ continually promoted (we call this ‘chasing butterflies while the elephants are escaping’)
  • Marketing that over promises (and usually under delivers)… (often called ‘polishing turds’)
  • Processes aimed at only today (and we’ll worry about tomorrow if and when we get there)
  • The aim of ‘making sales and profit target this quarter’ driving all process and behaviour (while customer experience, reputation and loyalty go out of the window)
  • A continual cycle of MD’s and Sales Managers cajoling, threatening and demanding in ever more desperate attempts to meet targets
  • Sales training coaching and training to embed new ‘sales processes’

Indeed, in many organisations, this warped belief in ‘how to sell’ and ‘what the shareholders want us to do’, has become almost impossible for individuals to kick against the pricks and do the right thing: resulting (when this institutional disfunctionalism is exposed to the public) in major scandals (such as Enron) and market meltdowns (such as the one of 2008).

But the world has now changed.

We are now in an age of organisational transparency, worldwide whistle blowing and customer empowerment via online reviews and social media.

Continuing to act in the old dysfunctional ways of the industrialised mass market and one way mass media, this world is now driven by global innovation and two way mass media is madness. This ‘brave new world’ calls urgently for a return to the traditional values of selling, such as:

  • Unconditional trust
  • Systems obsessively focused on customer needs (whether they purchase today or not)
  • Customer engagement through feedback and collaboration

This is the new approach to selling … and it’s also a return to the old traditional values of customer reputation and loyalty. So, instead of the previous dysfunctional aim to ‘sell as much as you can as quickly as you can’ (through marketing and selling tricks and ‘quick result techniques’), the new way to REALLY sell as much as you can as quickly as you can, is what we call ‘Slow-Selling’.

If you like the sound of this so far, then we think you’ll love the ideas we put forward … so keep looking out for our posts.

If you think this is idiotic – why on earth would anyone want to ‘sell slowly’ – then I suggest you waste no further time and instead go too Google, search ‘How to sell more quickly’ and take it from there …

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There is an old saying: ‘What gets measured gets done’

… and it’s completely true.

  • When the NHS in the UK started measuring patient wait times, the wait times went down (Hooray!) … but patient health (and death rates) went up!
  • When Continental Airlines started measuring on-time performance (and offered a small incentive to all staff to improve it), they went from no 7 to no 1 in a matter of months
  • And look how scoreboards motivate players on the field of sport!

So, accepting that measures are SO important, isn’t it bizarre that if you ask 95% of employees how their Organisation (or even themselves) are doing, they will invariably answer ‘I don’t know’.

Imagine how a football team would play if they didn’t know the score?

They often say something like: ‘I know I’m doing Ok if no one is shouting at me’

Imagine how a football team would play if the crowd never cheered, but only hurled abuse when something went wrong!

And, when organisations Do have measures, they are usually unbalanced. What is usually measured above everything else? Money, of course.

We are back to the same problem encountered by the NHS: if you measure too narrowly, you’ll get your results, but usually at the expense of something else.

Please note and remember this: if you ONLY measure money, you will get money, usually at the expense of something else. What may be sacrificed at the altar of money … to get the measures right? Well, perhaps it’d be quicker to list what would not be sacrificed!

Does Ratners the Jewelers spring to mind, or perhaps ‘Payment Protection Insurance’?

It’s time the business world started to get real and have some balanced measures: sure, money is important (without it the system won’t work), but it needs to be balanced out with longer term measures, measures of:

  • Customer Experience
  • Customer Loyalty
  • Reputation
  • Referrals
  • Loyalty

So that, if ALL (and I mean ALL) the balanced measures are moving in the right direction, then it’s highly likely the Organisation is in good health for both the short AND the long term. let’s face it:

  • Any fool can generate money at the expense of Customer experience (and many fools do … on a daily basis)
  • Any fool can also deliver great reputation without any profit (which is also a pointless exercise)

The key lies in balance in your measures (as in all things), and a focus on the long term measures FIRST (customer experience) and short term measures SECOND (money).


Because the long term actions, produce the short term results.