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What Does the Future Hold for Sales and Business? with Josiane Feigon [Episode 136]

Josiane Feigon is a sales futurist and the founder of TeleSmart Communications. She is the author of Smart Sales Manager: The Ultimate Playbook for Building and Running a High-Performance Inside Sales Team and Smart Selling on the Phone and Online: Inside Sales That Gets Results.

For the past 11 years, Josiane has written and published sales trends reports that lay out the significant macro trends, coming out in sales and business. Her latest trend report is called Building the Workforce for the Future: 16 Smart Inside Sales Trends for 2016.

What research goes into trend spotting?

Josiane researches through tons of different publications and analysts’ reports, for hundreds and hundreds of hours. Then, she filters through all the research to decide which ones are relevant for the sales teams.

This year’s trend report is dedicated to the workforce of the future. There really are 5 generations in the workplace right now. How we retain and recruit talent is transforming.

Field Sales Is Looking Inside

Sales organizations are structuring their sales with less field salespeople and a lot more inside salespeople.

Digital Tech Will Replace Some B2B Salespeople

The customer is saying ‘leave me alone, I know what I want, and I know how to get it myself’. So more salespeople are getting eliminated in this process. We know there are specific product types that if the channel adds no value, then it goes away. Salespeople are their own worst enemy in this regard. If you want to be replaced by automation, don’t add value. The intelligent and smart ones will survive.

Talent Growth Will Be Exponential, not Linear

Companies have to stay relevant. They need to write job descriptions for today’s day and age, not for 5 years ago. Talent is in demand, but you will not get the talent you are looking for if you aren’t creating the most current job descriptions. This will impact productivity and expectations.

True Authority Will Be Defined by Merit, not Position

This is an interesting and tough one because this millennial generation defies authority. Sales people would rather get their advice from their parents, before listening to their managers. Shifting from work-life-balance to work-life-integration.

Here Comes Gen Z – Watch Out for the M2s

They are younger than the millennials; they are about 19-22-years of age right now. The Gen Z are entering the workforce this year and they are incredibly tech savvy. They are also the first generation to be raised with smartphones.

Sales and Marketing Still Can’t Avoid the No-Po’s

First of all, a No-Po is a person that stands for no power, no potential, and no purchase order. They are sophisticated gatekeepers. They come under the disguise of big titles such as, manager and consultants. No-Po’s usually show a lot of activity when it comes to downloading webinars, eBooks, and white papers. They score really high in lead scoring. No-Po’s love to educate themselves on your dime. The bottom line is that they infect the sales funnel, because nothing ever closes. They also provide fake confidence.

Please listen to the whole podcast to learn more in-depth perspective on the 16 trends and check down below for the link to download this trend report.

Learn More About Josiane Feigon

What’s the most powerful sales attribute?

Good storyteller

Name the one tool you use for managing your own sales that you can’t live without.


Who’s your marketing role model?

David Bowie: Josiane is fascinated by how he reinvented his brand all the time.

What’s the one book that every salesperson should read?

Josiane thinks everyone should read my sales books.

What’s your favorite music to get you pumped up?

Sia and Mumford and Sons, but she really likes all music. Not too much of a Country Fan though.

What’s the one question you get asked most frequently by salespeople?

How did you go into business on your own? How can I do that?