There are two types of salespeople: those who create orders and those who take orders. It is important to understand your type and types of your employees, because this will help you to maximize the efficiency of your company.
When you go into a shop and buy something you meet order takers. You tell them what you would like to get and they tell you how much you should pay and when you can get your order. And that’s it.
Order takers usually don’t ask you why you decided to buy this product and how you are going to use it. Your communication is very seamless and quick.
In the B2B environment order takers do just the same. You reach them and tell them what you need or what problem you have. Order takers suggest you the best product from their assortment and take your order using some kind of an order taking software.
When companies have proper agreements the order taking sales reps may even check their clients inventory levels and generate orders by themselves. Clients just need to approve or edit the suggested orders.
Order creators do not wait for the customers to come. They make clients wish and buy their products. This way is much harder.
Order creators are salespeople who invest their time and efforts now and get returns in a long period of time. Their first and main aim is meeting or talking with someone from the company of their interest.
Order creators don’t know if the company has a need of any their products. They are ready for sales objections and they know how to handle them.
Order creators stay much closer to marketing because they do prospecting, they create awareness, they create need for their products.
Should you wait for customers or go to your customers? The answer depends on many factors. The main factors are: your psychology, salary, company and goals.
Psychology. Even though all salespeople work in sales they are different. Some of them feel bad when they do prospecting, cold calling and other proactive work.
They don’t like uncertainty. They don’t like to start communications disturbing people. If you think that this is about you, try to move closer to order taking positions.
On the other hand, there are sellers that can not sit and wait for customers. They prefer to go out and have an advanture. They don’t feel bad when they start talking to a stranger.
They like to have long conversations and they know all sales objections handling techniques. If you think that this is about you and you don’t have any bad signs for salesperson career, you should become an order creator.
Salary. Order takers and order creators have different salary possibilities. Skills that are needed to become a good order taker are more common. You should to be precise, diligent and communicative and these qualities can be found in many people. Therefore, salary of order takers usually fluctuates in a narrow range that is around average salary.
At the same time, good order creators must have skills that are more rare. You need to be more self-assured, brave, cunning, persistent and sage. That is why order creators get salaries that can be much higher than salaries of order creators.
Company. The company where you work may need only order takers, order creators or the both. For example, if you are in a company where the marketing team does all prospecting and brings enough customers to the sales team, you should understand that you can be only an order taker in this company.
But if your company delegated prospecting to its sales team then you should become an order creator or find another job.
Goals. Also, you should consider your long term goals. Order taker career can offer you more stable income and life. If you do your work good you will not be fired. If your company gets a few clients nobody will blame you. You are responsible only for taking orders.
However, be aware of some big trends that can change the industry and decrease the number of vacancies for order takers. E-commerce is becoming more and more popular not only in B2C, but also in B2B. If company chooses a good e-commerce platform with a high return-on-investment your position will be in danger.
If you are an order creator, your career depends on you much more. You can have a very high salary with many bonuses while you do a lot of sales. But when your business is going not very good your salary will drop and you may be fired. You will be the first and often the only person whom everybody would blame if sales are low.
The good thing is that your career is less dependent on external factors like the growing popularity of online shops. It is not that easy to substitute you, because a big part of business depends on you.
This depends on the current and future goals your company aims to achieve.
If you see that you are getting plenty of new clients and this situation will not change in the future then you should be looking for good order takers. Often this is the case when you sell unique or rare products and you need to think about taking and processing orders much more than to think about prospecting.
Don’t think that a good order creator will be a good order taker. Indeed order creators tend to be poor performers in this area, because they tend to start long discussions with customers that are ready to order.
This is not wise as this takes a lot of time, doesn’t increase sales and may make your customers unsatisfied because this is not what they expected.
However, if you need to attract more clients and your sales rely mostly on prospecting then you should be looking for top order creators.
Note that usually it is easier to find another good order taker than to find another good order creator. Think twice when you change your staff.
When you hire a salesperson it is very important to be able to distinguish different types of salespeople. If you do it right big chances are that you will hire the right person and you will achieve your goals.
Usually CVs of order takers and order creators look very similar. You can see how many sales this salesperson generated at the previous jobs and how the sales grew during this time.
What you will not see is the reason for this. Perhaps the sales were growing because the company had a very strong marketing and there were no strong competitors? Has this seller truly created created any of these orders?
To answer these questions you need to ask right questions your candidates during the interviews. Especially pay attention to how they answer to your questions about their life priorities, future and social behavior.
If you see that the candidate has a very strong desire to help others and this desire is even stronger than her desire to make money, treat this person as an order taker.
Order creators usually are very individualistic and their main motivators are making money and shaping their future. They are more risk-seeking while order takers usually are risk-averse.