From time-to-time, almost every company needs a quick revenue boost for a quarter, a year-end, or a number of other reasons. However, you don’t want to do it at the expense of longer term growth or by jeopardizing profits. How do you go about doing it without throwing a lot of money or time into the project?
This relatively short program for boosting your sales can buy you time to execute your strategy for sustained growth, while leaving you in a better position to achieve it. The sequence of the actions is important, so follow the steps in order to maximize its effectiveness.
Improve the Support for Sales from the Rest of the Company
Find out from your sales executive what barriers or problems he considers he has that are preventing him from creating higher sales. This could include problems from other parts of the company, from competition, or some other factor. Almost invariably, you’ll hear many reasons external to sales, such as shortcomings in marketing, product quality or a down economy. Get a list of those external barriers, but be careful not to accept these reasons as THE reasons why they don’t have higher sales.
One of the big mistakes in sales is ascribing low sales to someone else or something else other than what you can control. Once you “give over” that control you suddenly find yourself without the ability to really handle your own productivity; and what a trap that becomes!
Start by prioritizing these items and immediately set about getting the barriers and inefficiencies addressed by those whose job it is to handle the parts of the organization where a problem has arisen.
Boost the Effort and Efficiency in the Sales Organization.
Now start addressing the quantity of customer touches by increasing the effort and efficiency of your sales reps. Gather and examine those numbers in detail. First, look at the combined numbers for the whole organization and work your way down to the individual reps.
Appeal to the sales reps’ competitive nature and challenge them to keep up with their rival reps. Get each area and individual to increase their output to at least the levels of the comparison point you identified.
If a rep can do 100 touches in the best of conditions while working very diligently but they are only doing 80, you are losing 20% of your potential revenue from them. Get every incremental gain you can from each rep and team. This can add up fast across an entire Sales organization.
Increase the Quality of Customer Touches.
Now you need to improve their skills to increase the quality of the touches. Ensure you maintain the higher quantity you achieve from the above actions while you turn your focus to quality to maximize your gains. If the quantity slips, go back and fix it fast before moving on with the quality steps.
Listen to their phone calls, read e-mails, go with them to meetings or whatever means allows you to inspect the communication your reps are having with prospects. Correct them with constructive feedback. Just knowing that you are checking or accompanying them will cause many to step up their quality and perform at their best. Inspect for such things as:
- Are they representing themselves, your product(s) and your company well?
- Are they properly qualifying prospects?
- Are they using the standard pitches or scripts?
- Are they being efficient with their time and able to keep the needed quantity in?
- Are they applying the Sales training you’ve provided?
- Are they making good advances toward a close?
- Are they missing close opportunities?
Use the materials from your Sales training and show them precisely where they misapplied it or didn’t apply it. If you don’t have training for the Sales team, you should remedy this fast. SELLability can help with that.
You’ll find some reps have multiple points that need to be corrected, but don’t try to fix everything at once. Pick the most important point and correct that. Ensure that point is fully corrected before you move on to the next point. Don’t overwhelm them with criticism and remember to validate them for what they are doing well.
Share the most effective customer touches made by your best reps with the rest of the team so they see examples of doing it the right way and the great results from doing so.
You should see some fast results from the above steps and buy you some time to dig into the other areas of the company for further improvements and sustained growth. The best news is that your work in sales will better position them to capitalize on the improvements throughout the rest of the company.
CEO, SELLability LLC