Good at Value Selling? Critical through Crisis and Hangover

By Tom Pisello | March 19, 2020

We have written for the past two decades about the importance of value selling, now more important than ever during times of uncertainty and potential economic downturn.

In times like these, risk tolerance declines and budgets restrict. As a result, executives tighten up the reigns on spending.

Even if your buyer needs and wants to purchase your solution, your champion will be faced with extra fiscal scrutiny and spending freezes. As a seller, you have to recognize this is the new standard, and arm key stakeholders with the proof points they need to get your proposal to the top of the stack, overcome spending objectives, and free precious budget.

    You have to proactively sell with business value, being sure to:

  • Amplify the high cost of “do nothing” new, tallying what the legacy solution and practices are costing the organization in additional spend, higher risks or lost opportunities
  • Clearly quantify how your proposed solution can help the company cut spending, avoid costs, do more with less, reduce risks and capture ever rarer opportunities
  • Provide evidence that the benefits can be obtained quickly, with little investment in budget / resources (quick payback) and very low risks (in additional costs and not achieving the predicted savings / benefits).

Objective Management Group (OMG) evaluated or assessed almost 2 million salespeople over the past several years. From their extensive studies collating capabiolities vs. performance (highlighted below), you can see that the top sellers have the right DNA characteristics AND are much better at selling with value when compared with middlers and low performers.

According to OMG principal and author Dave Kurlan, “This isn’t a pretty picture because it basically shows that except for the top 5%, most salespeople suck at selling value.”


Group Selling Value Sales Process Consultative Selling Sales DNA
All Salespeople 41% 45% 15% 28%
Top 5% of All Salespeople 97% 85% 60% 100%
Less Than 2-Years Experience 6% 29% 6% 11%
More Than 10-Years Experience 53% 53% 20% 37%
Bottom 50% of All Salespeople 11% 27% 3% 1%

Dave totally gets it: “Selling value will help your company navigate the economic ripple effect from the Coronavirus. You’ll not only continue to generate revenue, you’ll be able to maintain your margins too.”

If you don’t immediately work to improve your value selling capabilities, implementing interactive tools to effectively perform remote collaborative assessments and scale the program to enable all sellers to better communicate and quantify value ,you will see a dramatic increase in deals lost to “ do nothing” , steep discounting and missed quotas.

So … how good are you at Value Selling?
Can all your sellers effectively communicate and quantify your unique business value to a crisis distracted, risk averse, frugal buyer?

Learn from the EVOLVER community, from experts who have successfully created and are scaling Value Selling into a Center of Excellence:

Building a new Business Value Program from Scratch w/ Aaron Froberg Sr. Director of Field Enablement for Egnyte—with-Aaron-Froberg-e9e0jh

6VA: Proving Business Value to Prospects and Customers with Latane Conant, CMO for 6Sense—Proving-Business-Value-to-Prospects-and-Customers—with-Latane-Conant-e9b732

Lessons Learned Scaling a Value Selling Program with Zach Richenbach, Value Consultant for Okta—with-Zach-Rickenbach-e97jo2

Lessons Learned Scaling a Value Selling Program with Bill Wienberg, Pre-Sales Director for Microfocus—With-Bill-Weinberg-e8ufbi

Download this guide on Why ROI / TCO Spreadsheets Don’t Work –

A great read: Dave Kurlan’s original OMG article and research:

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