I’m sure you have seen or at least heard of the Mythbusters on the Discovery Channel. If not allow me to give you a quick run down. Two gentlemen, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, who have dozens of scientific and engineering accolades attributed to them, set out in each episode to prove a myth either true or busted, hence the name of the show. As I set down and watched an episode my mind wandered to the many sales myths I have personally encountered and whether or not I found them to be true.
One such myth is one I am sure we have all heard at least once or twice: sales is a numbers game. In my experience this phrase may have once held some truth to it as back before sales call became ingrained as something the American public jumped through hoops to avoid it was fairly easy to start a genuine conversation with a customer.
More recently voicemail is often what we deliver our pitches too especially when following in the shadow of this myth which pushes us to make call after call no matter how many times our calls go unanswered. Instead of focusing on a number the goal should be to establish contact. .
Sales is not a game of numbers but rather a game of outcomes. A good parallel in recent pop culture is in Moneyball, where the Oakland Athletics signed players who were able to get on base, no matter how they got on base. And our sales strategies should follow suit. Sales managers and up have a responsibility to their employee’s to make sure that they can sell, but also that they have someone to sell too.
In my mind seeing sales as a number game is wasteful, it wastes time and it can even waste employee retention if the proper selling atmosphere is missing.