When you say you want someone to put their money where their mouth is, it means you want them to spend money to improve a bad situation, instead of just talking about doing so. Sales organizations: Are you just talking about developing your young sales professionals or are you investing money and time into doing so?
Young sales professionals are your company’s future. The boomers are retiring or slowing down. Sales development today sets you up for future sales growth.
One of my clients, Gallagher, is a great example of putting your money where your mouth is. The company has an incredible intern program that attracts over 400 new, young recruits annually. The company hires many of them upon college graduation, approximately 60%. And instead of enrolling them in a “sink or swim” sales program, Gallagher provides great training and mentorship.
Each year, I teach a couple of workshops about emotional intelligence and sales to these young professionals. The evening before the training, the young sales pros get to meet and socialize with Gallagher’s senior executive team. I am amazed at how many senior executives show up, given how busy they are. Let’s be clear: These busy executives don’t have time for this event, they make time for mentorship.
They put their sales money where their mouths are.
What’s equally impressive is that these young sales pros know how to network. You don’t see the typical youthful behavior occurring in a conversation. You know, that lovely habit of pulling out a cellphone in the middle of a chat or holding onto the phone as if it had an invisible handcuff.
They look you right in the eye, introduce themselves and carry on a great conversation. Why? Because the company didn’t assume they knew how to effectively network. It provided specific network training from a professional prior to the event.
The company puts its sales money where its mouth is and teach the proper etiquette and skills for networking.
Pat Gallagher, chairman of this $5 billion company, kicks off the next day with a presentation. Now, I’m guessing he’s got other things competing for his time. But he invests the time in the young sales pros because he wants them to know the company’s story, its culture and core values. He’s putting his money where his mouth is. He doesn’t talk culture, he does culture.
The future is here, right now. Are you putting your money (and time) where your mouth is in developing your young sales talent?