The new competition.
The nice word we have all come to know; collaboration, will over the coming years become the new competition.
International markets are crying out for collaboration as innovation and differentiation become scarce in a sea of commoditised products and services.
Many sales teams are still held hostage by old school sales management practices and outdated mindsets. Many are still stuck in the 80s with the old fashioned 'greed is good' mentality. In a 21st century business world this approach only holds your sales back. Often sales rewards are still self serving and endorse selfishness which is unfounded in the new world of collaboration.
Sales people who see themselves as collaborators will prosper. Effective business deals will be driven by sales people (internal and external) who understand that collaboration is key and competitiveness shouldn't get in the way of good business. Share ideas and assist colleagues with information and resources. Top sales performers Invest time building collaboration and look to further the interests of their customer's businesses as well as their own.
Introduce your customers to other suppliers and support resources and expand your customer's understanding of what a business relationship can be. Collaborative approaches such as this will place you in front of your competitors.
Successful sales people of 2011 and beyond will leverage the power of collaboration over competition because they understand that relationships never work if they are forced and manipulated, and that the sum is greater than its individual parts. Synergy and collaboration will prevail.