The Axioms of Selling Blog

Bob Nicols

Bob Nicols
Bob Nicols has 34 years of experience in sales, sales management, executive management and sales force development. He founded Burton Training Group, now AXIOM Sales Force Development, in 1990 after being a top and highly recognized performer in sales, sales management and executive positions within the technology sector. He has managed and mentored thousands of sales people, sales managers and senior managers and been responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars in sales. For more than 21 years he has developed and delivered sales programs that have become the standard for many Fortune 100 companies including AT&T, BellSouth, Disney Enterprises, Alltel, Verizon and ESPN. AXIOM programs have been implemented in over 30 countries including Japan, the UK, Germany, Dubai, Brazil, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia, China, Mexico, Canada, South Korea, Slovakia, Sweden, and The Netherlands. Bob's highly energetic and insightful lectures and workshops have resulted in invitations to be a featured presenter at dozens of national and international sales meetings and conferences. He is a trusted advisor to the presidents and senior managers of multiple organizations, both large and small and has been a board member of a national technology company. Bob is the developer of AXIOM's “Selling Sciences ProgramTM” and co-author of the “Selling Sciences” CD series.
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Recent Posts

27 Oct by Bob Nicols

Have you ever found yourself in a meeting at the company where you work that had no set objective or agenda?

You know the meetings I'm talking about.

Yep, THOSE meetings. We ALL know they happen way too often. How do those meetings go? How do you feel when you leave? Are those meetings productive?

Chances are, the answer is no. They rarely are.

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18 Oct by Bob Nicols

As with most young sales people, in the first few months of my career I struggled with what questions to ask of my prospects and in what order to ask them.

On good days, I came across with at least enough confidence to garner a little respect and a minimal amount of participation by my contact. On bad days, I got three orders: Get out, stay out and don't come back.

On a particularly off day, I was evidently bumbling through my sales call so badly that my prospect chuckled and said with a smile, "Have you ever done this before?" I replied, "What? Do you mean make a sales call, or make a fool of myself by fumbling over my words?"

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04 Oct by Bob Nicols

I've seen many organizations spend countless man-hours and dollars making certain everyone on their sales team fully understands their company's product and service offerings.

"Product specialists" with a significant depth of knowledge on certain technologies/feature sets/functions have become the norm for many companies trying to find ways to differentiate their approach and provide additional value to their prospects and customers.

When queried, these masters can quote chapter and verse from product and service manuals inches thick. Unfortunately, we are molding these folks to be better technologists, not better business people.

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29 Sep by Bob Nicols

A competitor changes one of your prospect's needs by providing a product with a capability your solution doesn't possess.

That's right. It's something the prospect now says s/he wants, and there's nothing on the horizon with your R&D department that would suggest you will have that capability anytime soon.

Things can change, and for some, there's nothing much worse than a competitor who changes the playing field by convincing a customer they need something you may never have.

Here's how to stay calm and continue to meet buyers' changing needs.

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22 Sep by Bob Nicols

Several years ago, when I was a regional manager for a communications company, I was COMMANDED to attend sales training. Did I want to go? Absolutely not. But it was mandatory and I wanted to keep my job and set the right example for my team.

The program will remain nameless to protect me from a libel suit, but I will say it was a well known, internationally delivered product, the standard for its time. And, yes, that same program is still being delivered today. Anyway, I attended with the intention of being a model student, getting what pearls of wisdom I could from the class.

I freed my mind of any preconceived notions that might have turned me against the material in advance. I even overlooked the fact that the person delivering the workshop was from human resources and had never sold a thing in her life.

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