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7 Skills every business development rep needs to master

Improve sales prospecting when your outbound callers excel in these areas

Chris Temperante
Chris Temperante
CEO / Partner

Business develop reps play a vital role in medtech and B2B companies. They’re the engine that cultivates your marketplace, finding qualified buyers and keeping your sales pipeline filled.

Not every salesperson, however, excels at this important early-funnel activity. As we’ve shared before, cold calling and sales prospecting takes a special skillset.

It’s one reason why savvy businesses often outsource their lead generation and business development activities to professional contact centers like Volkart May. Using trained specialists lets your internal sales team focus on what they do best: closing more deals.

The vital role of business development reps in the sales process

A strong business development team handles a variety of lead generation and inside sales activities.

Typical business development responsibilities include:

  • Qualifying inbound inquiries
  • Generating new leads
  • Nurturing cooler opportunities
  • Booking sales appointments
  • Identifying market insights
  • Updating prospect lists
  • Opening up new territories or market segments
  • Establishing trusted relationships with potential buyers

Doing these tasks efficiently helps you stay top of mind with potential buyers and meet your sales and revenue goals.

Top skills for medtech and B2B business development reps

Are cold calls getting the cold shoulder in your organization? Consider the training, goals and incentives in place to motivate your business development team . Then, make sure you have the right people in business development roles.

Mastering these seven skills will help your business development team thrive.

1. Confidence

Before you can persuade a potential buyer to believe in your product or service, you need to believe in yourself. A business development rep’s energy, self-assurance and authenticity will make a noticeable difference during lead generation and sales calls. Start by knowing your product inside and out, then using role play to get comfortable with sales prospecting discussions.

2. Active listening

No one wants to do business with a business development rep who dominates the conversation. Ditch the pitch (and the script) and instead, facilitate a dialogue with your prospect. Ask the right questions to get your potential buyer talking, then pay attention for keywords and problems that your solution can solve.

3. Relationship-building

Very few cold calls result in a closed sale with the very first call. What’s important is laying the right groundwork for future conversations. That means building trusted relationships. Focus on making a great first impression for your brand and truly connecting with the person on the other end of the phone.

4. Resilience

Outbound calling can be tough, especially when it comes to dealing with rejection. The more resilience your sales team can build, the easier it becomes to move forward. Help your business development team stay positive and motivated by creating a strong inside sales culture and using sales mentors with newer reps.

5. Overcoming objections

When a sales prospect says “no,” that doesn’t mean it’s time to disconnect. Anticipating sales objections and learning how to overcome them is vital to successful lead generation.

6. Curiosity

Curiosity is an underappreciated and often overlooked skill for business development. But, we’ve found curious people often make fantastic conversationalists! They’re motivated to learn, ask questions and bring great energy to their engagements.

7. Digital fluency

In today’s highly virtual world, there’s no excuse for poor use of the systems and tools used daily for sales prospecting. If that means additional training or practice sessions, invest the time and energy so your sales team can work efficiently and professionally on video conferencing apps, your company’s sales database or CRM, chat functions like Slack and presentation software.

Personal relationships make the difference

Even with the rise of chatbots, artificial intelligence and automated digital tools, it’s still no substitute for the power of personal relationships and human conversation in the sales process.

Contact us to listen to our professional business development team in action. We’d love to help you put the power of people into your sales process and reach your lead generation and sales goals.

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