Janice B Gordon Millennials in Sales

Forrester, “research indicates that 73% of Millennials are involved in B2B purchasing decisions, their rise to power is largely going unnoticed.”

Currently, 35% of the population, a report by PWC states “Millennials will form 50% of the global workforce by 2020”. A millennial, also known as ‘Generation Y’ is a person reaching young adulthood in the early 21st century. Born between 1980 and 2000; millennials are the largest generation in Western history. Millennials have experienced significant lifetime events, which have shaped their perspective. Understanding their perspectives and traits will help attract and engage millennial buyers, customers, employees and leaders.

5 Significant Millennial Sales Traits

  1. Tech-savvy: Having grown up in an internet connected world; they embrace technology, data analytic and fluidity.
  2. Challenge Status-Quo: They demand social justice and corporate social responsibility from engaging brands.
  3. Flexible Communication: Their preference is for trackable email rather than telephone communication.
  4. Tolerant of Diversity: Globalisation has exposed them to diverse cultures and people.
  5. Curious: They need to know the reason for doing something before they invest their time.

Millennials are finding new ways to approach sales, using apps for sales flow management, messaging and big data analytics. Millennials consume vast amounts of data and with the help of apps turn big data into customer insights and strategic decisions. This can be a threat to the Baby-boomer generation who are technology laggers. Millennials like mentorship. Evidence shows when Boomers and Millennial work together both gain from the experience gains.

The ‘spray and pray’ sales strategy no longer works and is counter-productive, in disengaging prospects. Account-based selling is a strategy taking a whole company personalised approach. If the prospective customer is to have the greatest cultural and solution fit. You must start with a targeted prospecting process first. Then the sales professionals will spend more time researching sales prospects than selling. In today’s competitive world, a well-researched prospecting approach yields results. The best fit buyer purchases the solution rather than is sold a product. Hence the relationship is mutually invested for the longer term.

Millennials are your naturally curious and willing to invest the time to research to ensure they achieve the best result. Businesses must adopt new platforms that give more detailed data about their sales prospects. Sales is a whole company approach. Adopting a Millennial mindset helps to gain new perspectives in data analysis and communication. Think how your whole sales team can embrace the Millennial mindset:

  • Reflect the global challenges.
  • Led in new perspectives.
  • Innovate technology.
  • Embrace the generations of salespeople.

This enables you to invest in a diverse sales teams, who develop long-term relationships and partnerships. Sales operations cannot afford to lag, they must lead in the pace of global change. Companies that adapt their sales strategy to the millennial mindset will outperform their competition.

Mary Shea says, “companies that fail to understand the dynamics of the heads-down generation may find themselves supplanted or disintermediated by up-and-coming companies that do”.

Remember the Millennials are the start, Generation Z just behind. To remain future relevant, you must look ahead and not behind at what the global customer is demanding.

Look to the Millennials!


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