Published by : Emeline Gleitz
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?
Your sales team can have a tremendous impact on your company's performance and you need to understand the factors that either support your goals or prevent you from reaching them.
How do you evaluate your sales team?
When we want to change the results we are getting, we first look at how we do things and how we could do them better. It is much harder to investigate on the human side. As a sale leader, you may fear resistance or demotivation from your employees if you analyse their performance.
How do you currently evaluate the performance of your salespeole?
- Do you conduct performance reviews of a regular basis?
- Do you have formal process or is it rather informal?
- What indicators do you look at?
Even if you have a formal process, chances are that your evaluation is highly subjective for several reasons:
- Relationship with the team members
- You probably chose the indicators you are tracking
- You don't know what you don't know
What are the common mistakes when evaluating a sales team?
First, leaders often don’t take advantage of the tools available to help them evaluate their employees properly, and rely solely on subjective observation. The tool we use at Prima Resource provides factual, pragmatic, scientific and objective answers.
Also, evaluations are frequently focused on sales skills and fail to consider the sales DNA of representatives.
Sales skills are technical skills that can be taught and learned during coaching sessions, sales trainings, and with experience.
On the other hand, sales DNA refers to intrinsic and hidden factors that play essential roles in sales execution.
The 6 elements of Sales DNA are:
- need for approval
- control over emotions
- supportive beliefs
- supportive buy cycle
- comfort discussing money
- handling rejection
Today, we know that a reps’ sales DNA can seriously hinder any technical knowledge acquired, therefore it is vital for sales leaders to evaluate it.
When and how to begin
Your numbers shouldn't have to be disastrous for you to take the time to think about the composition of your team. Even when all indicators are green, you can always do better and you should always aspire to do so.
To begin this exercise, you must draw a current picture of your situation. Here’s a list of questions to start with:
- How many salespeople have you hired in the past while?
- How many have left?
- Why have these people left?
- Are your reps underachieving?
- What is your measurement for achievement?
- Intuitively, do you think that your reps have the required competencies?
- Have you taken all the time needed to coach them on what they need to know?
With these answers in hand, it is now time to proceed with a scientific evaluation of your sales force, including an analysis of both sales skills and sales DNA.
You will find out who has gaps to fill, and what these gaps are. Do they only need coaching or are they simply not in the right role?
Maybe you will also realize that your team has all the right competencies, but you have too many or too little people to achieve your objectives.
What not to do
Too many times, business leaders and sales leaders use a trial and error approach. They will hire more reps in the hopes of selling more, supervise them over a period of 3 to 6 months, and then decide if they should keep them. By doing so, they are just rolling the dice and throwing away considerable amounts of time and money unnecessarily.
Instead, be proactive rather than reactive and focus on quality evaluations to assess your needs.