Not All Will Become Challengers

As we have written in previous posts, Challenger sales reps, while making up 27% of the general sales population, make up 39% of the top sales producers in organizations. Again, Challenger reps are those whose profile focuses on bringing provocative insight that builds constructive tension in customer interactions. This all is detailed in the recent landmark research by the Corporate Executive Board’s Sales Executive Council.

As discussed, these executive quality conversation and sales call management skills and coaching can be taught and reps can be developed to be Challenger types.

However, it is important for sales managers to note that not all of your reps will be able to make the transition to Challengers. Actually somewhere between 20 to 30 percent won’t change but stick to their ways.

Again, dynamic customer engagement in a complex sales environment is not a reflection of who a person is, but rather a reflection of how they sell. If you can get 70 to 80 percent upping their game like this, that’s a great thing for the business and revenue growth.