From years of managing a wide range of different teams in different industries, I implemented a number of strategies which delivered increased sales, improved performance in individuals and a healthy competitive team.
First, on the list is capturing the activity performed by the team. Having visibility of what the team and each individual does in order to achieve a sale creates a foundation of information.
By activity tracking, I mean recording every task that is performed, each call that is made or received, meetings conducted, demonstrations delivered and proposals sent. I will admit that this element does receive a lot of objection and complaints from the team, however, it is essential if you want to understand what and where your team and the individuals that make it up need help and support.
In recent times, many CRM solutions make this task much less time-consuming with phone-based apps that record calls, link them automatically to the contact and intelligently prompt outcomes.
Know your Metrics
Once you have the activity logged, the next step is understanding your sales ratio. This is the relationship between activities and a sale. As a manager this is one of the most powerful and effective ways in which to improve performance even in your best achiever. The ratio allows you to see where their strengths and weaknesses are. For example, someone who has a high call to close ratio could benefit from reviewing their calling script and or qualification, another with a high demo to close ratio may improve by tailoring their presentations to the clients pain points.
It is important that you educate your team on how to calculate their ratios and that they understand what they should benchmark their performance against. This will vary depending on the products or services you are selling.
Reporting sales performance and statics on a monthly basis is great, however, unless you compare this performance against previous periods, previous years or against other team members, you are only viewing performance against a target.
The benefit of comparison is it enables understanding against other variables that may not be obvious. Examples are seasonality, economic improvement or even the impact of an extended personal leave event. Understanding why performance changes through comparative analysis allows you to focus your efforts on proactive measures to maintain growth.
Give them Tools
Providing training and coaching is essential in enabling your sales team to improve. From experience, one of the most common observations is an immediate improvement in the team’s results, followed by a quick reduction as the team lose focus on the content.
The most effective way I have found to sustain continued value from the investment in education is through the delivery of supportive tools that provide ongoing reminders and prompts to re-emphasise the content.
Great examples of these are word prompts for objection handling and value establishment or checklists for demonstrations.
Lastly, never complain, jokingly or otherwise about paying commission. If you are paying commission you are making sales. Additionally unprompted, surprise recognition of exceptional performance helps promote the right behaviour and improves morale.
Managing sales teams are tough, the constant pressure of delivering on targets means any assistance in being able to identify opportunity early on in improving performance helps you exceed expectations.
I hope these tips are helpful and as always, if you would like further assistance in how to translate them into your operation, please do not hesitate to contact us on 0467 800 852 or Click Here.
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