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Information and knowledge are the building blocks for the 21st century. When it comes to building relationships, the cornerstone of long-term sustainable sales growth within an account is heavily dependent on securing the right information and knowledge. More importantly, is understanding how to articulate that knowledge into a solution that helps to achieve your clients’ business growth objectives.

Today, there is arguably more information and knowledge available on a wide variety of topics. Let’s look at a few. Today, versus 20 years ago, more information via the Internet, multimedia, e-books, traditional publications, blogs, etc., exists to help us run our businesses better, understand what foods to avoid in order to be nutritionally fit, and how to better relate to our spouses, co-workers, friends, and our children.

Yet, with all of this available information and knowledge, we still have the highest business failure rates, highest obesity rates, and highest divorce rates in the history of this country!

At Sales Artists, we believe it’s in the application of known successful action that will make the difference in bending that trend. While most companies focus on “best-practices”, we focus on “best-in-class”.

Benchmarking best practices have helped companies focus their hard-earned margin dollars on methods and techniques that have traditionally delivered better results than those achieved by other means. However, as long as people keep searching for the “latest and greatest”, and the market continues to be inundated by more and more information, there can be no “practice” that is “best” for everyone or in every situation.

If you think about e-commerce, and look at the “best-practices” perfectly executed by 1000’s of companies everyday on the web, not all of them end up being the next Amazon, eBay, or Zappos.

That doesn’t make sense! Aren’t they are all employing best practices in navigation, layout, web-marketing, SEO, social media monitoring, etc?

Best-in-Class isn’t just about following the standard template of benchmarks that companies strive to reach. Much like sales, there are 100s if not 1000s of sales processes out there that “sales-people” use in pursuit of meeting or exceeding their sales target.

According to publications and online resources like CSO Insight, only 59% percent of B2B sales teams (according to a recent study), hit their annual quota.

Less than 15% actually overachieve their number consistently, year-after-year. And, when it comes right down to it, 100% of plan is just doing your job. It’s not really building a business within a business that allows you the flexibility in schedule or the financial windfall to your personal net worth that attracted all of us to sales in the first place.

Best-in-Class is focusing on what the top 10% of over-achievers are doing. It’s employing their methods and their attitudes toward their business and their customers. It’s about understanding how to compress the amount of time it takes to build genuine relationships with your customers, prospects and suspects. It’s the art of selling with purpose and not accidentally.

Best-in-class rarely spends time celebrating a deal or wasting time at the water cooler; they are interested in serving their customers well because it’s their passion and they know it serves their business well.

The next time you see the top performers getting their latest award or accolade for being “best-in-class”, go through your memory banks and ask yourself, what are they doing that I should be doing. The next time someone asks you to take time away from your business to focus on activity that isn’t producing revenue for your business, ask yourself, is this a best-in-class activity?

– Caesar Kavadoy, Chief Sales Evangelist

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