How to Guarantee a Permanent Improvement in Sales Results – Part 2
Hello and welcome back to ‘How to Guarantee a Permanent Improvement in Sales Results’. In Part 1, we looked at some of the issues Sales Leaders are experiencing today and insights from our research of 2662 global companies. Identifying issues within your business is only part of the problem, there’s much more to consider.
In Part 2 It’s all about Planning and Direction.
Usually, sales people don’t develop or plan how to move a sale forward, nor do they have a clearly defined set of goals against which to measure progress. This lack of planning can be fatal.
Let me share with you some really fascinating findings from a survey conducted by Results Corporation Plc
- 60% of client buy after the 5 ‘No’
- 44% of sales people give up after the 1st ‘No’
- 22% after the 2nd
- 14% after the ‘No’ 3rd
Also, to share an anecdote from our research report – a well known oil company discovered their best sales people on average took 3 visits and 5 follow up calls to convert a prospect into a client. Yet their average sales people only visited twice and then gave up. This cost the company millions in wasted sales effort and even more in potential sales revenues. Which is really powerful information for us to to learn from.
As you know, all this leads to reduced motivation – the longer a salesperson spends trying to achieve their targets, the less efficiently they work, which becomes tiresome and they will suffer from a lack of motivation. Every sales person is different but the net result of a demotivated sales force is always the same – reduced efficiency.
Sales never result efficiently and with maximum revenue unless the sales process is continually and closely managed. And before it can be managed it must be manageable.
So what are the solutions?
- Develop a comprehensive, formal, realistic, step by step outline of what sales people are expected to do.
- Ensure buy in and effective implementation.
No matter how brilliant a sales process – it will only be effective if it is followed and used by sales people and managers alike. This is where most organisations fall down.
Here are some ideas to help:
Get customers involved – ask them how they want to be sold to, customer focus groups, surveys, discussions with sales force – there are lots of benefits to all of these especially the effect early inclusion has on the buy in from the sales force.
Identify best practice – record what your top performers do, how they do it, their mindset and beliefs, have them share it with their team members.
Sell benefits to salesforce – once developed, top Sales Leaders take great care to sell the benefits to the salesforce, embed this in their knowledge – it’s more than just features.
Closely monitor and control – a top sales leader will closely monitor and control how well the process is being adhered to and make improvements.
In summary, build a solid foundation, just like when you build a house. When a solid sales process has been defined, sold to the salesforce, and supported by other departments, the stage is set for transformational performance improvement.
Thanks for reading Part 2 of ‘How to Guarantee a Permanent Improvement in Sales Results’. Part 3 will focus on ‘A lack of essential skills’ and how this leads to below average performance which in turn leads to below average results.
To download a summary of the research click here
Thank you for your time, if you wish to get in touch, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org