It’s always different working with entrepreneurs vs. sales people.
I recently taught a class here in Toronto focused on social media at MicroSkills. For a lot of “new” entrepreneurs, selling is the last thing they want to do. Many of them see sales as a necessary evil – as if it is only a matter of time until the market finds out about them and the phone begins to ring. They have the vision, but are not prepared to put in the time to find customers/clients (and the skills to pull it off). They focus their skills gap on the brand… i.e. “if only the brand were stronger…” vs. “I’d like to be better at selling.”
On the other hand, sales people often miss/overlook the vision of the business – both their own and their prospect’s businesses. They have the skills and can pound out calls and presentations, but have trouble with the big picture.
Now – these are generalizations, and there are some great sellers with vision and some entrepreneurs who can work it on the streets. Ultimately, I think it is rare for individuals to be strong in both areas. Success doesn’t come easy.
Bottom line = $. The efforts of any business – your own or selling within someone’s business needs to result in sales. Sales continues to be stigmatized while functioning as the life blood of any organization. I see both entrepreneurs and sellers alike continue to wish that their brand could help them sell, or better yet, sell for them.
Selling is a fine art – marketing is an applied art.