Spotting the Difference Between Sales Methodology and Process

sales process

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In a post for the Sales Force Effectiveness Blog, John Kenney explains why a sales methodology isn’t enough without a process to back it up.

“A sales methodology requires the framework of a process,” he writes. “Without it, even the best tools and techniques will not matter for much.”

Unlike ‘out-of-the-box’ methodology training, it takes time to design a sales process that is mapped to the buying process, he says.

Kenney says a sales process is a flow, ‘brand-free’ and includes the following elements:

It is usually customized to reflect the unique selling environment, organizational structure, sales channels, and customer segments.

Stages are well-defined; each of which usually has a name like ‘Evaluate Options’ or ‘Identify Requirements’.

Each stage has its own buyer-related exit criteria that capture the buyer-specific actions that indicate a deal has moved from one stage to the next.

Specific steps for each stage are clearly defined.

A Sales Methodology, he says, is the ‘how’ of selling as a skill set.

“Job aids, templates and tools are used to support and execute the selling technique,” he writes.

If you’re looking for more on sales process and sales methodology, Open View has a few tips for you. Ask yourself  Does Your Sales Process Map to Your Customers’ Buying Process?

Also, here’s a three part series on common sales process breakdowns, focusing on the details of expansion stage problems. Also, check out OpenView Labs: Tools and Methodologies, which can help with several issues your company might have.

For more on sales process and methodoly, read Kenney’s full post here.

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