Since I started working at Prima Resource, I have had the opportunity to greatly improve my knowledge and skills in sales management. This has helped me discover certain aspects that I wish I knew when I was a sales manager and that would have completely changed the way I made some decisions in this role.
Among all that I learned, there is one fundamental element that really caught my attention and that definitely would have made all the difference: the importance of using specific evaluation tools for sales, such as Objective Management Group's evaluations. These tools make a huge difference in coaching salespeople and they would have made me a much better sales manager than I was.
Let me start by asking you a question: Are you just another sales rep?
Most salespeople today have a presentation-based approach. It's not necessarily their fault. Traditionally, companies tend to train salespeople on the products and/or services to be sold. The features, advantages, benefits, enhancements, etc. A salesperson can recite all of these by heart.
Sales representatives then develop bad reflexes, because they see that the added value they offer is inevitably linked to the product, when actually this is not true. The value you bring to the customer is a solution to their problems.
Let’s begin with an example. Suppose you are selling construction materials for a specific territory, which we will call Canada, in which you have a lot of success. Now that you are successful and you have made a market analysis, you believe you could expand your sales territory to the United States.
From there, you must consider the different elements you will need to approach, such as the differences of factors between the United States and Canada, and how you are going to approach those elements. That is what it looks like to build your strategy in a very specific sliver.
But, from now, I’ll look at the subject in a much more basic perspective.
Dear readers, we are thankful for the interest you have shown towards the articles we have published during the year. The team at Prima Resource hopes that these articles have been useful to you, whether you are a business leader, entrepreneur, sales manager or sales representative.
Some articles have sparked more curiosity and we have compiled them for you to discover them or to rediscover them a second time.
As a business owner, sales VP or entrepreneur, I’m sure your mind is always busy wondering how you could take your business to the next level. How can you grow? How can you grow faster? How can you be more profitable? In which direction should you go?
Maybe from the start of your journey in the company, you consider that you’ve already grown a great deal and had success, but you still want to defy the status quo and go even further.
It is completely normal, and in fact, beneficial to your company to question what is slowing down or even stalling your growth and what you can do to move forward. But to pinpoint the exact reasons can be a challenging task, especially when it involves people. Does your sales team allow you to achieve your goals?
Do you have difficulty qualifying enough sales opportunities that turn into revenue? Stop qualifying them, and start disqualifying them instead!
It is a change of mindset, but this vision follows the logic and shape of the sales funnel.
This may seem strange, but when you start from the negative, you have a positive attitude right away. We often talk about the qualification stage, when in reality, we should talk about the stage of disqualifying potential customers.
If I'm talking about a mammal living in the lands of Africa and Asia, that is fast, elegant and resembles an antelope, you may guess that I'm talking about a gazelle. The main strength of gazelles is that they travel in herds to better react to danger. Impressive fact, some of them reach a running speed of more than 100 km per hour. Are you wondering why I'm talking about gazelles in an article on sales team performance?
Just like a group of gazelles, a sales force is more efficient with the contribution of each of its best players. The company's goals are achieved more quickly when everyone also gives their 100 km per hour.
I see many sales leaders struggling to establish reliable sales forecasts for the coming year. This is a very difficult exercise that leaves all managers and sales leaders with headaches.
However, you can improve the quality of your forecasts and avoid some very common mistakes.
When business leaders implement a transformation program for their sales force, they inevitably encounter resistance within their organization.
First of all, a certain amount of resistance to change from the sales team is a common occurrence. However, if they are closely monitored and held accountable for their actions, this resistance should disappear after a few weeks.
Sales transformation is more than a trend or a buzzword, it is an inevitable shift dictated by the conditions of the economy, changes in behaviors, and expectations. Sales have changed much more in the last 5 years than in the previous 25 years!
Among the conditions that require companies to transform themselves is the predominance of the web and the access to information everywhere and at all times.
Today, sales reps no longer hold the information that decision-makers are looking for and that is why we are contacting them much later in the buying process. Comparing different suppliers has become child's play and competition is now worldwide for many products and services.