In December, the good folks and sales experts at OpenView Labs asked their Top 25 Sales Influencers from 2012 for predictions about what will take place in the world of Sales this year. I didn’t quite go all “Mayan Apocalypse” in my response, but I shared some blunt perspective hoping to wake up salespeople who have forgotten what their job is:
I predict there will be a returned focus to traditional prospecting efforts and the expectation that salespeople will proactively self-generate their own leads. Reality is sinking in that inbound marketing is not a perfect panacea and sales teams will be forced to deal with the fact that they must create their own opportunities to succeed developing new business. Senior executives will lose patience with lack of results and the excuse that “targeting and pursuing prospects that are not coming to you is a waste of time.” Be prepared to prospect for new business or be replaced by someone who will.
The bold prediction prompted a follow-up conversation. Just today, OpenView Labs posted this article summarizing our dialogue:
The title made me smile because it perfectly captured my point, and I like that they don’t mince words. Check out the article. I chose to post the link (above) as well because the piece struck a nerve and is generating a lot of play on twitter and traffic to their site. Curious for your thoughts. Are salespeople that cannot or will not proactively generate their own opportunities in trouble?
I should also let you know that OpenView Labs will be posting the full list of predictions from their Top Sales Influencers very soon – possibly this Friday, so keep an eye out for it.