Sales Person Hiring Criteria: When you hire a sales person, the sales person must have strong
Hunter,Qualifier and Closing Skills. The sales person must be highly money motivated with a strong desire to be successful, and have a presidential mind set.
Sales Manager Hiring Criteria: When you hire a sales manager they must have strong coaching, mentoring, motivating and recruiting skills.
Sales Process: To win more sales and market share you must have a strong clearly defined sales process that supports filling the sales pipeline with quality prospects that are consistent with your model of the ideal prospect opportunity.
Sales Pipeline: The sales pipeline is the life blood of the organization. The sales pipeline supports the financial stability of the organization. The sales pipeline measures how prospects enter the pipeline from suspect, to cold prospect, to warm prospect, to hot prospect, to closed business.
CRM Program: It is vitally important to capture the notes of every attempt, contact, conversation and meeting your sales people have. The information in the CRM program is monitored and tracked by management, and is used to conduct pre-call and post-call planning sessions with your sales team.
You need to be aware there are four levels of sales people you can hire to prospect, increase your sales, profits and market share.
At the first lowest level the sales person is driven and directed by the sales manager. The sales person is driven by commission only and typically sells on price. There may also be an element of fear and worry if the sale is not made.
The next level up is when the sales person doesn’t necessarily need to be managed by the sales manager, but is still driven by commission, selling on price, and their own desire for success.
The third level at which the sales person can approach sales is to act autonomously and sells value. When they sell value they no longer sell on price, but look to provide a solution to the prospect, and no longer need to be managed by a sales manager.
If you are committed to increasing your close ratio and retention of customers you need to be aware of the fourth level of sales person.
The fourth and highest level of sales person is a very unique individual. They have a quite and strong confidence without being arrogant. This is the sales person that has gone through a personal transformation, and operates at a higher level of consciousness and awareness. At this level the sales person sees themselves as a driving and creative force with a definite life purpose.
They operate autonomously. They look to reach higher levels of personal growth and mastery. There is no fear, but a real sense of knowing, with a conviction that they are and will be even more successful.
They sell with a purpose and a mission, which is based on the fact that they are doing what they do to make sure their prospect or client is successful.
They are givers and not takers. They are committed to the company, their customers and prospects. They know when the prospect and or customer are successful, then and only then can they be successful.
When a sales person operates at this level they ask the right questions. They do not jump to submitting premature quotes. They are sure when they make their presentations it is at the correct time in the correct way that makes sense to the prospect. Their pipe line is filled with qualified prospects. The close ratio and retention of customers is high and the success and money role in.
To learn which of your sales people have what it takes to rise to the fourth level CLICK HERE:
The need for approval is one of the most common weaknesses in sales people. When you as a sales person have a need for approval from prospects you neutralize your ability to do or to say the right things.
For example, legitimate tough questions are not asked. This results in business opportunities are not qualified to the degree they should. This lack of proper qualification fills the pipeline with too many unqualified prospects. Following up on too many unqualified prospect is a waste of you valuable resources.
In my previous blog I discussed follow up as a way of improving the close ratio. While this is true you can only increase the close ratio by following up if you have a truly qualified prospect opportunity.
When you fix the need for approval you will increase your productivity by 35%. To fix your need for approval begin by setting goals and accomplishing your goals. As you achieve more and more goals you will feel better about yourself. The better you feel about yourself the higher your confidence level will become. The stronger you feel about you, the less you will need the approval of others. As your self concept increases the need for approval will decrease.
You will be positioning your self to increase your market share, sales profits, close ratio.
Did you know that 48% of all sales people never follow up with a prospect and only 25% of all sales people make a second attempt to reach a prospect? This includes your competitors. Imagine your ability to increase your sales, market share and close ratio if this was corrected.
Here is a statistic that is shocking, 12% of sales people make only three stops or contacts. By making an adjustment and holding your sales people accountable and tracking behavior you should increase the bottom line.
When it comes to close ratios 2% of sales are made on the first call, 3% of closed business happens on the second call, 5% of all sales are made on the third call, and 10% of sales are made on the fourth contact.
Did you know 80%of all sales are made on the fifth to the twelfth attempt?
So if you are looking for the secret to closing more sales and profits, increasing your close ratio and market share, just follow up more on good qualified business opportunities.
Qualify your business opportunities so you know what is real and what is not,hang in there and don’t give up. It is far better to follow up until you get a No and not walk away too early thinking it is a No.
At a business meeting I had the pleasure to meet a number of business owners and salespeople. When I left the meeting I had spoken to five people I had not known and learned about their businesses and what an ideal prospect opportunity was for each of them.
A day after the meeting which was on a Monday, I realized I could use the services of one of the salespeople I had met. I called the sales person on Tuesday morning and left the following message.
Al: “Hello John Doe we met at the Monday, business meeting I enjoyed getting to know you and learning about your business. As it turns out I need your service for this Friday please call me at 908-472-3848.”
I did not get a return call on Tuesday. On Wednesday I called and again left the same message. Later on Wednesday I received an e-mail from the sales person which read as follows…..
Salesperson’s e-mail: “Got your message. Send me an e-mail with some dates and times you are available.” I thought to myself, I want to give this person a piece of business but he is screwing up the process.
I did not send an e-mail response, but called the salesperson back and asked that he call me, because time was running out, and I needed to make arrangements. This sales person’s sales process was getting in my way.
I finally received a call from the salesperson on Friday morning. At that point in time I had made other arrangements and the salesperson lost a $700.00 sale that was a layup.
Now, why am I telling you this story? Because I know you have salespeople and you want them to fill the sales pipeline with quality prospects that move to a close.
The pipeline is the life blood of your organization and is driven by salespeople that have hopefully, a sales process that will close business, increase sales, profit, and increase your company market share in the shortest period of time.
Your salespeople may believe, as John Doe thought that they are working efficiently by using e-mail.
I had made a specific request as a prospect,” PLEASE CALL ME, I NEED YOU I HAVE MONEY AND WANT TO SPEND IT WITH YOU.” The sales person used technology instead of common sense. ( The prospect calls me and says they need me and my service for Friday so instead of picking up the phone and making a personal phone call which will take less than a minute and close the deal, I will send an e-mail because it is more efficient and that is the way I sell .)
You need to evaluate your sales department’s sales process.
The Sales Process Grader is an excellent tool you can use to determine, if your sales team’s sales process is as effective as it could be. ( AND IT IS FREE )
When you streamline your sales process, you shorten the sales cycle, increase your close ratio, and capture more business in the shorter period of time. The Sales Process Grader is an excellent tool for improving your sales process and closing sales. YOU CAN TRY IT FOR FREE JUST CLICK HERE
Meeting with a prospect I learned they had lost about $2,000,000.00 in potential business to their competitors. I also learned additional $1,300,000.00 in orders was no longer coming in from previous
When I reviewed the notes the salespeople had placed in the companies CRM program, I kept seeing:
- Things are slow, said they don’t need anything.
- Have plenty of stock, try me next month.
- Pete not in, I left my card.
Whenever I see the same notes repeat themselves over and over again, I always question the sales process first and then the salesperson.
As I read the notes for one account, they reflected the same message over and over again. I asked my prospect if we could visit the customer. My prospect agreed. We discovered something quite interesting on our sales call. Here is how the conversation went…..
Al: Mr. Smith, I am with the marketing department of XYZ Company. I am conducting a survey and hoped perhaps you could give us some input.
Business owner: I don’t have a lot of time we are real busy.
Al: Can we have five minutes of your time and we will be out of here.
Business owner: I can give you five minutes then I have to go, we are working on a big job.
Al: I was looking at the notes our salesperson Mike has been placing in our CRM program, for each of his visits. His notes indicated business was slow and you have plenty of inventory, and it has been hard to reach Pete. Your place seems to be jumping, and you said you are busy. Have we done something to offend you or your company?
Business owner: Not that I know of. I don’t know your salesperson Mike, and Pete has not been here for about six months.
I felt a knot in my stomach as I watched my prospect’s face turn red. I could almost see the smoke come out of his ears. Before leaving we made an appointment with the business owner to come back.
The business owner knew we were coming back to learn more about his business and discuss how we might be able to work with him to help his company be more successful. We thanked the business owner for his time and left.
On the way back to my prospect’s office we talked about what had happened on the sales call and the salesperson in question, and why we needed to evaluate his company’s sales process. The salesperson had been with the company for almost six years had a good attitude. Some months he had hit his quota and some months he had not. For all intensive purposes he was a team player and was a dependable salesperson.
I pointed out to my prospect that there was something wrong with the sales process his salesperson was using or he would have learned that Pete had not been with the company for a while and the owner of the business did not know him. Also it was apparent the company was flourishing.
When we spoke with the salesperson in question we learned he had been going into the company’s facility through the loading platform door as he always did and was talking with Louis who said he was a manager. It turned out later that Louis was not a manager.
There are a number of steps that must be followed in surgery. When steps are left out the patient could die. In the sales process if there are steps missing or out of order the sale could die. To check out if you have Sales Process CLICK HERE:
After using our FREE Sales Force Grader the business owner gained crucial insights on how to maximize the sales performance in his sales force and how to increase sales,profits and market share.
You can have Free Access to our Sales Force Grader for the next twenty six hours after which it will be turned off.
Answer just 22 questions (it will take less than 5 minutes) and we will provide you with an instant score on the relative effectiveness of your sales force.
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Over the years I have had the opportunity to sit in and observe clients sales meetings. Some of the meetings went very well while others turned into heated arguments. As I observed both types of meetings there was a key distinction between them.In the argumentative meetings there was a tendency on the part of the participants to…
- Take things personally rather than see the message and the sender of the message being separate.
- The use of “you said” was common as opposed to using “what I heard”.
- People did not wait for the speaker to complete their thought and were interrupting instead of listening for the speaker to complete their thought.
- Participants were checking messages on their phone during the meeting and not giving the speaker their undivided attention.
- Meetings were interrupted by someone coming into the room and pulling participants out of the room.
- People who had left the room and returned wanted to be brought up to date on what they missed.
Here are some thoughts to consider if you are serious about growing your sales, profits, market share and getting the best from your business development meetings.
- Prepare and send out an agenda prior to the meeting.
- Stick to the agenda.
- Start and end the meeting on time.
- Establish ground rules about interruptions and cell phones, texting, e-mails, etc.
- End the meeting with a brief review of what was accomplished.
- End the meeting with action plans and due dates for those action plans.
- If another meeting was intended, book it prior to the initial meeting and follow up with a memo and agenda. Alternate....If another meeting is needed book it without delay and follow up with a memo and agenda.
The kids are back to school and summer is over and heads turn back to business.
What we don’t want is business as usual. We are in the final countdown and in the last quarter to close sales.
The big question is, “Will you hit or exceed your sales quota for the year by December 31 and is the health of your sales pipeline sufficient to hit your quota”.
Here are Some Sales Tips to Help you Increase your Market Penetration, Market share, Sales and Profits.
1-Take a look at your quota for the year and ask yourself if it is a realistic quota or was it too high. If you are not making your quota don’t assume your quota was too high.
2-What is the quantity of new prospects in the sales pipeline and is there enough to support new sales growth?
3-What is the quality of the new prospects in the sales pipeline, and how closely do they match your ideal prospect opportunity?
4-What stages of my defined formal sales process are your prospects in? If the greater amount of prospects are in the early stages of the sales process and you have a long sales cycle, those prospects may not close until 2013 which will affect hitting your sales quota for 2012.5-Is there sufficient data in the sales notes to validate a prospect as being a cold, warm, or hot prospect?
6-When you review your sales notes do they reflect what the sales person said or did? The notes should reflect information the sales person gathered from the prospect. The more information the sales person gathered to qualify or disqualify the prospect the healthier the sales pipeline.
7-How long have my prospects been in the sales pipeline, and have any of them exceeded the typical sales cycle length? For example if you have a thirty day sales cycle, and you have a prospect that has been labeled a hot prospect, and has been in the sales pipeline for four months, chances are it is not hot, and you are buying into stalls and put-offs.
8- Have you been prospecting for the correct type of business or are you spending too much time following up on prospects that were not qualified properly?
To learn why you may not be winning you share of business you may want to read " How to Quote Less and Close More Business" By Clicking on this Link http://www.turrisiassociates.com/blog/tabid/72214/bid/47049/How-to-Quote-Less-and-Close-More-Business-Part-2-Tip-the-Scales-in-Your-Favor.aspx
This week I was speaking with a new client that just recently went into business for himself.
His biggest concern did not know what business he was really in, even with products to sell.
This client has a great deal of industrial experience and knowledge. He went into a business servicing customers who knew him and will be providing them with a new product line.
When selling these products he did not want to be looked at as a “me too” business selling a commodity. He wanted to increase his sales pipeline, market share, market penetration, sales and profits.
My new client wanted to become a value added provider but wasn’t sure how to go about it. I helped him put a 6 Step Process together that turned into an annual $50,000.00 sale. Here are the steps he used to start making money.
Step 1- He went on LinkedIn and looked for all the people he had relationships with from years back.
Step 2- He found out where they were and what they were doing.
Step 3- He set up breakfasts, lunches, and after work cocktails, or dinners with the people he knew from his old world.
Step 4- He, at these meetings had discussions that helped him discover what was happening in their careers.
Step 5- He learned what his connections found most frustrating in their business life.
Step 6- He developed solutions for the problems he was able to solve.
Step7-From this effort it all came back to him, with a $50,000.00 contract, which will renew each year.
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