Author Archives: Richard Ruff

About Richard Ruff

For more than 30 years Dr. Richard Ruff and Dr. Janet Spirer - the founders of Sales Horizons - have worked with the Fortune 1000 - such as UPS, Canon USA, Smith & Nephew, Boston Scientific, Owens & Minor, Textron - to design and develop sales training programs. During his career Dick has authored numerous articles related to sales effectiveness and co-authored "Managing Major Sales", a book about sales management, "Parlez-Vous Business" which helps sales people integrate the language of business into the sales process, and "Getting Partnering Right" – a research based work on the best practices for forming strategic selling alliances. Dr. Ruff received his Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Tennessee and a B.S. from Rennsselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Artificial Intelligence – a last best hope for sales management coaching

When sales managers spend more time with their sales teams, good things happen. Yet, sales managers often run out of time to coach their sales team. Sales managers in best-in-class companies actively coach their sales teams – and – they leverage trends, like AI, to ensure that their sales managers have the time to coach. Continue reading

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Sales memo – winning starts with thinking strategically

In B2B sales one-size-does-not-fit-all is a cornerstone proposition. There are no generic customers; hence there are no winning generic strategies – each customer is unique and every winning account strategy must take that uniqueness into consideration.
When thinking about what it takes to formulate a winning sales strategy, a good starting point is remembering you are dealing with a complex buying environment. Many decision-makers and influencers are involved, the needs and issues are multi-layered and often conflicting, and the solution configuration and implementation management is likely to be complex and sophisticated.

What must salespeope do? Know their customer and think innovatively. Continue reading

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Selling at C-level and the too late-too little puzzle

When selling to the c-suite, leave needs discovery home. Time spent vs. the value received does not work out very well for the senior executive. Too much of the time in the meeting is spent on educating the salesperson about a problem the senior executive already understands. Instead – have a business conversation! Continue reading

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Negotiation strategy – positioning the glass as half full

Role of anchoring in crafting and executing a successful sales negotiation. Continue reading

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Virtual reality – a new day for medical product launch presentations

Sales presentations – using virtual reality in sales presentations and even sales training – to improve effectiveness. Continue reading

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Sales productivity – time to push the more button

3 best practices to help companies improve sales productivity. Continue reading

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Sales training – more of the same never results in something different

Sales training – for success in today’s transformational markets, do something different rather than simply doing a better job doing what you are doing. Continue reading

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Sales culture – put the horse before the cart

4 best practices for creating successful sales cultures: risk is rewarded, helping salespeople learn vs. telling them what to do, encouraging team efforts, and document success. Continue reading

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Sales training – managing a conundrum

Sales training programs – criteria for selecting effective sales training. Continue reading

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Best practices for improving sales process

Improve your sales process. It is whatever your salespeople are doing on a given day to improve their navigation of the customer’s buying process. So it makes good sense to gain control. If not you will end up with everyone doing their own thing and having a fair number of sales reps being less effective than they could be if you pursued a systematic approach to improving the sales process. Continue reading

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