If your sales team is lacklustre in enthusiasm and results – and your business is struggling as a result – then here’s a critical component of any successful business…
A TURBO-CHARGED SALES TEAM.
You see whether you have sales staff now or will need to hire them in the future, assembling a sales team that sizzles is key to creating a profitable company over the long haul.
Of course, this is a complex topic that goes well beyond what I can possibly convey in a blog post, but to get you started, here are the three foundational elements of a winning sales team:
How can you set up your sales staff (or yourself, if you do most of the selling) to win? Prospects can spot negativity and desperation a mile away, so it’s critical that you and your team stay as positive as possible. This starts with setting yourselves up for success: provide sales staff the tools they need – solid scripting, effective Customer Relationship Management technology, and ongoing training to help them hone their skills and improve their results.
Then, tie their performance to their remuneration. This is a fundamental concept, but I’m constantly surprised at how many business owners fail to use it. If your staff don’t have a vested, financial interest in their results, take steps NOW to correct this.
Finally, make sure the work environment is positive but includes some friendly competition. Create contests with fantastic incentives. Introduce vision books so that your staff sets goals based on their life objectives. (Don’t know what a vision book is? Send me a quick email and ask me about it – it will revolutionize the way you plan!)
It might be necessary to include DIS incentives too, or penalties for underperformance, but don’t berate people for their mistakes or weaknesses; instead, help them rise above them.
Create a culture of success and fun, and you’ll be well on your way to developing a sales team that produces well for years to come.
Next, you need to help your staff understand that sales is a numbers game — nothing less, nothing more. It’s all about activity: making enough phone calls, securing enough appointments, and asking enough people to buy to get the results they (and you!) need.
When it comes to Activity, sales process management is a foundational discipline. Sales process management involves monitoring and managing the flow of sales prospects through a predefined set of steps, that culminate in a completed sale.
There is a whole industry of software tools for sales process management, however, in many cases, an Excel spreadsheet is enough to track a single conversion rate for a single-stage sales process, but when a business starts tracking multiple sales stages, a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software becomes necessary.
Managing the sales process with the right CRM solution is one of the techniques we use when addressing the second A, Activity.
Another technique we use is the Default Calendar. The Default Calendar technique is a critical part of the sales management system that we use to help our clients and their sales teams to deliver the right amount of activity. By blocking these activities into their calendars as appointments with themselves that they can then be held accountable for keeping.
Also, for best results, ground their activities in their vision book. So, if they want to take that fantastic vacation this year, help them understand that the way they handle their day-to-day schedule will determine whether or not they’ll be sipping margaritas on a Caribbean beach…or spending a long weekend fighting the crowds at the local lido.
Over time, as your staff practices and perfects their approach, they’ll develop real sales acumen – the ability to make consistent, ongoing sales, like clockwork.
Be sure to help them along the way. Train them on solid sales principles. If you don’t know them, learn them – or let me help, because this happens to be one of our areas of expertise. Teach them appropriate and effective ways of introducing themselves to new prospects, handling objections, asking for the sale, and more.
As you do, they’ll grow in confidence and satisfaction…and your profits will soar.
If you’re struggling with your sales efforts, do yourself a favour: get in touch with me and begin to turn things around.