In manufacturing companies, production departments are generally efficient and effective. Unfortunately, most sales departments are not.
In a way, it's reasonable that manufacturing processes are easier to improve than those related to less reproducible elements. However, there are many opportunities to optimize the performance of sales teams, starting with viewing this department as a machine to generate income.
Here are the most significant sources of inefficiency related to the sales process and how to improve them:
The share of SMEs that have a formal sales process is around 25%. This figure was only 8% in 2016 - there is still a long way to go!
A formal sales process:
The quality of your sales process and the ability of your team to execute it effectively represents a significant competitive advantage—especially in a world where buyers have changed their buying behaviors.
As mentioned above, it is essential to be able to measure the effectiveness of your sales process within your CRM. A sales process is not static, as customers evolve, and your business needs to adapt quickly.
When you set up a formal sales process, the number one goal is to achieve better sales performance by replicating a winning recipe. However, certain stages of the sales process may create friction and cause the loss of opportunities. You need to understand, based on objective data, what causes you to succeed, and what causes you to fail.
You will need a well designed CRM system so that:
This above list may seem long to you, but a well-designed CRM will be your ally.
Coaching is the number one factor to impact the performance of salespeople. If you are a sales manager or a sales leader and you want to improve results, you cannot achieve it without coaching your people.
What we have seen with all the companies that we've work with is that, even if you have the best salespeople, the best tools, and the best sales process, coaching is what makes the biggest difference. It is what makes or breaks a sales team. Sales managers are, therefore, the lever for sales team performance.
Congratulations! That's excellent. Can you coach more and better? Here are some tips:
Don't wait to start! Effective coaching should be short but high frequency. Here's how to get started:
By focusing on these three areas, you will significantly improve the effectiveness of your sales team!
Entrepreneur, business owner, speaker, trainer, coach, adviser, blogger and expert about sales force performance and business growth… I'm all of it and none of it at the same time. Want to know why? I take an integrated approach to know where your company needs help to get from where it is right now to where you wanted to be. My clients know me for telling them what they need to hear, instead of what they want to hear. They value the depth of my expertise, the science behind my framework and the predictability of my insights. While most try to fix salespeople by working on factors that influence sales, I concentrate first on the scientific causes of underachievement and overachievement of sales organizations. I build profitable sales culture by working on the essential components that increase an organizations probability of generating profitable sales.