Many companies are frustrated with the performance of their sales teams. The sales people are often ineffective, disorganized, don’t prospect, and don’t close sales. This is not the fault of the sales team, rather the fault of management for not developing a championship sales team. After having worked with hundreds of sales teams, I see patterns to the ones that crush it. Here are the key areas that championship sales teams have mastered:
Consistent Strategy: So often, companies are changing strategy for their sales teams every few months. There is nothing more discouraging to a sales person than to have the playbook changed regularly to suit the flavor of the month. Identify the strategy that you are committed to and stay focused—just like you want your sales people to stay focused.
Hiring Process: Do you have C-players on your sales team? If you do, chances are they are not fixable. So stop trying to fix your worst sales people. Instead, focus on hiring better sales people to replace them. Companies with championship sales teams are always on the hunt for A-players. They have a very thorough hiring process that vets candidates.
Team Development: Don’t complain that your sales people aren’t closing sales if you aren’t investing in them constantly to develop their skills. Your sales team is an asset that needs investment in order to function properly. Consistent training to improve your team’s skills is a necessity.
Accountability: How do you hold your sales people accountable? Are you tracking how many calls they make every day, how many meetings they set, how many referrals they ask for? Don’t only track sales. Staying focused on the prospecting activities is critical in ensuring that your sales people hit their goals each month.
Celebration: When your sales people are killing it, they need to be recognized and rewarded accordingly. Did a sales person exceed her goal by 50%? Celebrate the hell out of that achievement and reward her with a new iPad. Also, make sure everyone else recognizes the accomplishment. Great sales people love to win, so create an environment where winners are celebrated.
Which of the five components do you need to focus on? Please share in the comments below.
Marc Wayshak is author of the book Game Plan Selling and a sales management speaker.