Today’s post is written by Barbara Weaver Smith. I met Barbara through Twitter, and have had a chance to connect F2F as well. She is as much fun in person as she is on Twitter. I am delighted to share her post today. This is her second visit to Roundpeg, and it won’t be her last!
My new eBook, Whale Hunting Women, is about how women do big deals in business and community. What do women do instinctively that makes us good whale hunters?
Women learn early to practice certain habits that are good for sales—habits of listening, learning, mentoring, empathizing, and teambuilding. These are behaviors for which we are rewarded and may also be natural preferences that we’re born with. In the 20th century economy, which in the west was built on ruthless competition, women were encouraged to “unlearn” those habits and become more aggressive and self-promoting in order to succeed in the business world.
It didn’t work for women then, and it doesn’t work for anyone now. Today we work in a global, information-based economy that thrives on collaboration and cooperative deal-making. Women need to know this and allow our socialized skills and preferences to make us successful.
Big companies, which I define as “whales,” do not often buy from a single salesperson. Anything of substance that they buy involves the concurrence of a team of inside buyers—the procurement agent, the financial person, the IT leader, as well as the end users of marketing or software or legal or customer service or HR services, for example, or those involved in using manufactured products of all kinds.
Today the sale is not a good-old-boy back-slapping kind of sale. It is a serious, professional, somewhat distanced interaction. Buyers want to meet and interact with the people who will actually deliver services to them, not only the sales reps. So the nature of how the whales buy means that companies need to sell as a team. They need to involve subject matter experts in the sale. They need a salesperson who is a teacher and team choreographer, not a rock star.
In my work with entrepreneurs, I have found that women leaders are often especially devoted to (and good at) empowering their team, mentoring others to step up to new responsibilities, and orchestrating rather than commanding. Those practices come naturally to us, and we have come into a time where new business rules favor the so-called “soft skills” that women bring to their work. So let’s work that advantage and do some bigger deals!
Excerpts, reviews, and download link on Whale Hunting Women at http://www.thewhalehunters.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=17. Special price during my virtual blog tour May/June 2009
Author: Barbara Weaver Smith, Ph.D.
President and CEO, The Whale Hunters
To learn about Whale Hunting Women & to order your copy today, visit http://cli.gs/WHWEbook
Thank you for visiting this post about Barbara Weaver Smith and Whale Hunting Women. Two people who comment during the tour will be entered a giveaway – post a comment on any post about the tour and you will be entered. The winners will win a three-volume audio set of Whale Hunters Wisdom. Volumes include I: Mind of a Hunter, II: The Hunt, and III: The Whale Hunting Culture ($90 value). Barbara Weaver Smith’s website – http://www.thewhalehunters.com
Barbara Weaver Smith’s blog – http://blog.thewhalehunters.com
Order your copy of Whale Hunting Women – http://cli.gs/WHWEbook
To see the tour schedule visit http://virtualblogtour.blogspot.com/2009/04/whale-hunting-with-barbara-weaver-smith.html