I have interviewed top sales people from various industries. Even though there are some differences, the core of what makes a business consultant valuable is essentially the same everywhere.
I can boil it down to 10 simple concepts.
- Being curious, always asking more than you are speaking. Really being able to conduct powerful discovery sessions to uncover pain points and business objectives. It’s usually not the first thing they say, or even the second thing but tertiary statements after digging through the first couple of surface level conversations.
- Being Resourceful internally and externally. Being able to know how to partner and work well with everyone and anyone whether it is an engineering resource, legal, other internal departments, finance, or working very closely with management. It takes a high degree of consistent communication and transparency that will help you throughout the process.
- Growth/student mentality- I have noticed a common theme of top performers that they all have the always learning as much as possible whenever and wherever. Sometimes it is through online forums/reading a lot of different type of books/and/or reaching out to mentors for advice.
- A huge focus on a life outside of sales- They have other passions too, whether its family/Crossfit/the gym or any other hobby. They do not let sales define their whole lives. It is important to have a well-balanced lifestyle so that your career overwhelm you.
- Genuine and a positive attitude- It is not a surprise that people that find their voice and are genuinely optimistic about the industry or just their overall take on life and sales, in general, is important because you really have to find the value in what you do for a living or else you will not be happy.
- The ability to communicate verbally and through emails equally as well. Being able to be concise and articulate your messaging across all mediums is important in today’s age with technology being a gatekeeper at times.
- Listen, listen, listen.
- Just always having a good time. Everything is always an adventure or an opportunity. There is no such thing as problems, just opportunities for a resolution.
- Having a strong network or support system. Building your ecosystem and brand takes time. Having a large referral network certainly takes patience. Something that I know I can work on and is common amongst top performers.
- Being able to see the big picture. Often we get bogged down in the details but all that matters is how is this going to affect your company’s larger objectives mentioned in your annual report.
Bonus: Prioritization/time management/ Clear vision with measurable steps. Executive presence. Likeability. Adaptability.