8 traps successful women avoid in b2b sales

Women in B2B Sales

Women in B2B Sales

A few weeks ago we posted a blog: 6 traps successful women avoid in b2b sales. The 6 traps we identified were:

  1. Copying male salespeople versus leveraging your unique differences.
  2. Questioning that you belong.
  3. Seeking praise from others to define your success.
  4. Waiting for the stars to align perfectly before you act.
  5. Making statements that sound like questions.
  6. Taking it personally.

We thought about this blog the other day when we came upon a new book by two journalists – Katty Kay and Claire Shipman – The Confidence Code. The authors share that a confidence gap exists between men and women that contribute to success. While  not focusing on Sales, we think the points raised are important for woman in Sales – so we’re adding them  to our list.

Three of the confidence gaps already were listed under traps in our blog:

  • Women don’t speak up and when we do, we often raise the tone of our voice – so it sounds like we’re asking questions rather than making statements.
  • Women believe failure is failure – however today, failing means that you’re willing to try, you’re “in the game” and that you’ve learned a lot.
  • Women hold on to criticism – rather than jettisoning it and moving on.

Two other confidence were not on our traps list and, upon reflection, probably should be. They are:

7. Women think things through too much – when done to excess it can inhibit confidence and stop women from taking action.

8. Women never leave their comfort zone – risk-taking is critical for success, but sometimes women seek to be too perfect.

Although The Confidence Code has a bit of a different focus – the same issues shine through. Women selling into b2b accounts must be their own biggest advocates – not lay barriers for their own success.

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©2014 Sales Horizons, LLC

About Janet Spirer

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. Janet has followed two different, yet complimentary paths. First, as a B-School Professor she taught marketing, sales, and business strategy courses. She also managed a consulting practice focusing on sales productivity and marketing – working with a variety of clients ranging from Xerox to IBM. She translated those experiences into a book – “Parlez-Vous Business” – that helps sales people develop the business savvy to sell successfully. Since co-founding Sales Momentum® in 2000 with Richard Dr. Spirer received her Ph.D. from The Ohio State University, an M.P.A. from The University of Texas at Austin, and a B.A. in Economics from Brooklyn College. She holds the appointment of Professor Emeritus at Marymount University.
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2 Responses to 8 traps successful women avoid in b2b sales

  1. Brian MacIver says:

    Bravo, Janet!
    If I had written it, then a fool would have rushed in, but you were an angel!
    I suggest that your readers take note, and that Sales Managers should add this insightful article to their coaching knowledge.

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