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 customers.
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: