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How to become a seller from Graham Hawkins: The Future of Sales Profession

Sales teams have never really been »teams«. For more then 130 years, sales teams have been made up of »autonomous agents« who effectivelly own and operate an entire territory or set of accounts, regardles of their skillset, knowledge or expirience. In other words, sales team ask each individual to play every role in every game.[1]

Steps to become succesfull seller:

  • Set your career direction
    • Reconcile your conflicting priorities
    • Set your long-term goal
    • Assess your current position
    • Analyse the gap
    • Educate yourself
  • Set your area of specialisation
    • Your passion
    • Future growth potential (list industries and segment near your industry that experience growth, list potential employers in those industry, list area of specialisation that those business are likely to value)
      • How long does your industry exsist
      • Where is your industry currently situated on the industry lifecycle
      • Are the buyers in industry looking for substitute products/services
      • What are the barriers to entry for new competitors
      • Is my company potential target for MA
    • Customer value
      • Most valubale personal trait in the twenty-first century would be the ability to synthesise information. In other words, the ability to decide what is important and what is not, how to organise that information, and how to share it with others who will value it. (Murray Glen-Mann)[2]
  • Develop commercial insights
    • Scenarios
      • Best pratices
      • Emerging trends
      • Investment risk
      • Case studies
  • Cultivate your personal brand
    • Usually sales persons looked and act the same, they wanted to be uniformed in order not to offend any customers. But they are commodity and customer will not remember them and with new reality where sales jobs are disapearing, they can be quickly replaced. You need to build you own approach and apperance.
    • Be authentic.
    • Define your values
    • Identify your unique promise of value
      • Types of businesses you engage with
      • Difference that you make for those businesses
      • Value that your clients say you bring to their business
  • Questions to ask
    • What are your target customers
    • What problems are they trying to solve
    • What is the key difference you make for them
    • What value would your customer say you bring to the table
    • What makes you valuable
    • What makes you compelling
    • How have your customers changed due to your influence
  • Identify customer connection channels (this is done after you develop all other 4 areas, then you need to find a way to connect to your customers – you should be the one they call first)[3]

The four buyer quadrants:

Left side complexity of product/service, bellow complexity of buyer environment (four type of seller – order taker, explainer, option finder, consultant).


[1] Graham Hawkins: The Future of Sales Profession, Grammar Factory PtY. LTD, 2017, page 127

[2] Graham Hawkins: The Future of Sales Profession, Grammar Factory PtY. LTD, 2017, page 184

[3] Graham Hawkins: The Future of Sales Profession, Grammar Factory PtY. LTD, 2017, page 140

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