The Weekly Sales Cycle: Blog Roundup 5/27/15

Our weekly sales blog roundup is a curated list of must-read content that we think will be particularly interesting or useful to every sales professional. Let us know what you think in the comments below.

  • How to prepare for giving product demos– Roman philosopher Seneca once said that “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” Product demos are a big opportunity in your sales process, and it can be a make-or-break moment. While there are a lot of ways to improve your delivery, so much of a demo’s success lies in the preparation. This article does a great job of covering all of the logistical and technological nuts and bolts you need to make sure your demo goes off without a hitch. You’ll want to keep this post handy.
  • What’s one thing you’ve learned at Harvard Business School that blew your mind?– It’s a fortunate few that are able to experience a Harvard Business School education. For the rest of us, there’s this blog post by Ellen Chisa. In her post, Ellen takes you through each class that HBS MBAs need to take in their first year, and offers a valuable piece of knowledge she took away from each one. One of our favorites was the concept of an “entrepreneurial gap,” which she explains as when an employee is given more accountability than control. Read her post to learn how this is used to incentivize employees along with lots of other bits of wisdom that are sure to get you thinking.
  • A Product Person’s Perspective on Enterprise Selling– Whether your company sells to enterprises or not, this article by Steven Sinofsky, former President of the Windows Division of Microsoft, offers a great perspective and valuable insight for anyone involved in B2B technology sales. One of the biggest takeaways is the increasingly important distinction between a customer and a partner. He explains why for SaaS businesses, and especially when selling to enterprises, it is important to should view what you’re selling as a capability rather than merely a product.
  • 4 Simple Hack to Make Your Team More Accountable– Effectively managing your sales team in a way that encourages accountability is one of the most important and draining responsibilities of a sales manager. Figuring out how to stay on top of your team’s activities without micromanaging to the point where it’s detrimental can be a tough balance to strike. This blog post by Rivalry CEO Jon Birdsong gives actionable advice on the steps you need to be taking and questions you need to be asking.