Beware of Crisis-Sales Coaching

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There is Crisis-Management, Crisis-Communication - but is there also Crisis-Sales? In my opinion there is - and as far as I have seen it is not the most likable way to execute this profession. Crisis-Sales is earmarked by desperation.

Crisis-Sales Coaching happens when there is a crisis or economic turmoil where companies want their sales people to perform better than before and get things back on track - hunt for new opportunities with existing and new clients, focus on the outcomes, results - encouraged by short term targets, like bonuses.

We all know from extensive research that external motivators like bonuses, money, can be helpful to reach target on the short term, but is not sufficient to keep people going on the long run. Also we know that clients do not value pushy sales people - especially not when organizations priorities are not necessarily focussed on “buying” but rather on “surviving”.

Recent research done by CSO Insights shows that clients do not necessarily value sales people anyway, unless they have a complex problem or a complex character. Effective salespeople need excellent communication skills to develop partnership solutions for complexities otherwise clients fall into the so called Apathy Loop: no difference or added value experienced between vendors - no click, only price.

"Let’s remember to spend time in the area of Trust - the Human Dimension."

So in our endeavors to get performance where it needs to be and meet targets, let’s remember to spend time in the area of Trust - the Human Dimension. Fundamental human interaction being empathetic and sincere, and not slip into desperate Crisis-Sales Coaching push mode.

I still like the so called Trust Equation from David Maister with which formula you can more or less rate the empathy level of the interaction. Maybe we need to keep this in mind when the rush starts.

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If you want to win as an organization you need to let your People play the Game: Engage, Empower, Perform, Enjoy together in order to establish best results and performance.


Marja van Soest Activates People and Business partnering with her clients as Executive Consultant, Master Trainer and Coach in Sales, Service and Leadership. Parallel to her business career Marja is a sports trainer specializing in In and Outdoor Cycling. Combining her passion for sports, groups, individual and organizational performance Marja developed the 4 Motivation Keys Activation Model: Engage, Empower, Perform, Enjoy empowering leaders to build a culture of Trust.

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