#027 Business Acumen – With Anthony Innarino

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This is my first podcast in 4 years! I can’t think of a better guest to kick off 2018 than with one of the smartest sales trainers on the planet, Anthony Innarino. I was so bummed when I had recorded this interview in 2014 and then wasn’t able to publish it. The good news is that Anthony absolutely crushed it and I can’t wait to share it with you!

I first started following Anthony when I discovered his fantastic podcast, “In The Arena” on his website of the same name. If you aren’t following Anthony, please go check him out (of course after listening to this episode!) He inspired me to begin this podcast and website.

Anthony just released his 2nd book The Lost Art or ClosingIt is a follow-up to his first book, The Only Sales Guide You Will Ever Need. Both are excellent!

During our time together, Anthony taught us that it is no longer enough to have sales acumen (although you must have it.) Today’s sales process is driven more by business acumen. In other words, you need to understand your buyers business, and be able to “see around corners” for them. If you can do this, Anthony describes this as a Level 4 Value Creator. 

Anthony’s 4 Levels of Value Creation

  1. Delivering your customer a good product. (But most of your competitors have good products.)
  2. Giving your customer a great experience. Starbucks is a perfect example. (But they are not the only coffee shop in town that delivers a great experience.)
  3. Delivering a business result to your customer that can be measured as a ROI. (Most of your competitors can articulate how their product or service can deliver the same of better results.)
  4. Developing relationships of value. (Not just you like them and they like you. Instead are you a critical thinking partner with them? Do they see you as an expert in their industry? What future opportunities and/or challenges can you help them predict?

The Two Biggest Mistakes Sales Organizations Make

Having followed Anthony for some time I knew that he does a great deal of consulting with sales organizations. I asked him if there were any common themes that he noticed in teams that were really struggling. He didn’t even hesitate. He said that a) Either the organization didn’t have a formalized sales process, or b) They weren’t following it. After 20+ years of leading sales teams, I couldn’t agree more.

Anthony also mentioned another gentleman I follow. Chris Brogan is a sales, time management, and marketing genius. His courses, on a multitude of things, have greatly helped me. You can find Chris at: chrisbrogan.com

I would once again recommend both of Anthonys books. You can buy them on Amazon by clicking below:



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