This sales management story demonstrates that a lack of sales results and low activity/morale can be fixed through route cause analysis, vision and team work.
Some months ago, I started working with a well-established business supplying high end architectural fittings to building firms. The Directors had asked me to work with the sales team to find ways of increasing productivity. They believed the demand was there, yet the team struggled to:
We started working together and I joined them on site for a few days to understand the business, people and processes. In short, sales were happening yet there was a lack of clear sales process and opportunity management.
The way forward was as simple as extensive:
We agreed to put in place good sales habits and practices supported by a standalone CRM application called Pipedrive. Simple to configure, cloud based and good value.
My job was to hold the team accountable and highly motivated through weekly 121 meetings using the phone and SKYPE.
We wanted more sales from existing customers and bring new customers on board and here is how we did it:
Dedicated in-house lead generation and future client engagement. The guy who does this is a heavy weight top class communicator. We decided not to work with 'cheap and cheerful' telemarketers who would not understand the business well enough to engage potential new clients. Our man was a big investment, yet it paid off handsomely. He understands the businesses he approaches and how our solutions can help them with their objectives. Most importantly he asks pertinent questions to engage clients from the start.
We had agreed sales processes for each of the customer groups. This would help us to keep track and what was next.
We owned tasks throughout the sales process. We all had a key role to play and our names were tagged against next actions.
We had total transparency throughout the sales cycle using an effective standalone CRM application used by all.
We included KPIs like 'agreement to quote’, ’meaningful conversations' and 'meetings with decision makers'.
The weekly 121 calls lasted no more than 20 minutes per sales person. We had agreed a simple structure for this too: What is working, what is not working yet and what is our next action.
And so, our journey started. What made things easier was the amount of sheer energy through a passionate sales director who challenged himself and the team to greater achievement every day. Over time the pipeline became bigger and bigger...........Sales started to come in at an increasing rate. Then suddenly the monthly target was smashed. The rest is history as they say. The team is now highly motivated and super active winning deal after deal.
If you have a small, leaking sales funnel or are concerned not all sales opportunities are picked up and exploited fully, feel free to contact me for advice