Today Sterling Chase celebrates ten years of Driving Sales Excellence. As Managing Director and the founder of Sterling Chase, I am proud to look back on over a decade of making major contributions towards transforming the performances of the sales teams and sales leaders that we have worked with.
In this time, we have developed, coached and consulted over 4,000 delegates in our award-winning Selling from the Left® methodology, enabling our clients to collectively realise a return on investment of over $2 billion.
When I started the business, I had the vision of designing and delivering sales development programmes that would transform the processes, attitudes, competencies and skills of B2B sales functions operating across the UK and Europe.
Throughout my corporate career, I had seen too many sales professionals suffering from using outdated sales techniques that focussed too much on the features, advantages and benefits of the products and services they were selling. I had also seen too many sales development initiatives that were too narrow in terms of the scope of what they addressed and too generic to be easily or quickly applied back in the workplace. They also, crucially, lacked alignment to the organisation’s strategy, systems and processes, and therefore couldn’t be embedded into ‘business as usual’. Ultimately (and invariably), these sales development initiatives had a limited impact on the bottom line.
Hence, Sterling Chase was founded on the principle that it would design and deliver customised sales development programmes that would be contextualised to the client’s marketplace by teaching delegates our Selling from the Left® consultative selling methodology. This has been achieved with great success through action learning groups, using live scenarios and applied work-based behavioural assessments that rapidly deliver a sustained business improvement and, in turn, groundbreaking return on investment. No more generic sales training that fails to properly embed effective sales tools and techniques.
Ten years on, I would say that we are well on the way to achieving this vision. Having trained thousands of delegates and generated over $2 billion in ROI for a wide range of clients, we have enabled the sales forces of the organisations we work with to adapt their processes, attitudes and skills to the 21st Century world of selling.
But there’s still a lot of work to do. Since starting the business, it has become more and more apparent that there is a growing need to professionalise sales functions around the world. From marketing departments to accounting practices, there exists a plethora of applied professional qualifications and professional bodies representing just about every function that you can find in your typical large organisation – apart from sales.
But things are starting to change. In 2010 Sterling Chase became the first company in the UK to offer applied, Level 5 professional sales development programmes that combine real performance improvement with external sales qualifications. As an Institute of Sales & Marketing Management (ISMM) Recognised Centre for professional sales qualifications, our Sales Academy programmes now provide individuals with the chance to earn internationally recognised, applied sales qualifications up to Diploma Level 6 for sales professionals and sales leaders.
Finally, we are making real headway across multiple industries in terms of embedding sustainable professional behaviours that deliver a sustainable step-change in the performance of the sales force.
As we continue to realise and develop our visions we would like to say a special thank you to the sales functions we have worked with, as well as the employees, coaches and facilitators who have helped to make my vision a reality. Here is to the next 10 years…
Written by: Steve Eungblut, Managing Director of Sterling Chase