Make a Few Small Changes And You'll See Big Sales Results

Posted by Chris Mott on Tue, Aug 14, 2018 @ 14:08 PM

Kangaroos Jump

New data shows there is a meaningful relationship between the quality of your pipeline and your effectiveness in the qualifier and value selling competencies. By making a few small changes you will see a big impact. Watch this two minute video post to learn more.

 

 If you are committed to improvement sign up for our Live On-Line Sales Training Series. Click Here   

Topics: sales data, closing percentage, sales pipeline, Sales Coaching, sales training, steps in a sales process

Getting Pushback on Your CRM Adoption?

Posted by Chris Mott on Thu, Jan 30, 2014 @ 13:01 PM

crm, sales coaching, sales pipeline, sales management best practices, sales lessons, sales funnel, recruiting sales people, sales training, sales competencies

This is the 11th article in a January series on the Architecture of the Sales Force.  Here are the others:

In a recent conversation with a CEO, we discussed his use of CRM.  While his intention was to increase focus and visibility into new business development, the primary usage had become tracking client and delivery activities on large, existing projects.  Little attention was paid to tracking the flow and evolution of new opportunities.

In his case, significant non-sales events had diverted his attention.  Because his business was driven by large long-term projects, profitability and cash flow had stayed positive.

Last week, during a Sales Recruiting program, we discussed reasons why the recruiting and startup process failed to work.  I asked the management team whether their CRM system tracks the internal milestones needed to do business with someone, or a sales process that leads to a prospect wanting to buy from them.  After some silence, they acknowledged that it was the former.

These scenarios illustrate ways in which CRM is misused and underused.  While sales technology tools have grown significantly in the last several years and companies are investing in them, it is important to look at adoption, usage, and most importantly, outcomes.

What are some of the desired outcomes of using a CRM platform?

  • Better data on the status of opportunities,
  • Greater accuracy of forecasting,
  • Retaining institutional knowledge on clients and prospects,
  • More accurate metrics and KPI’s,
  • Insight into the sales process,
  • Sales Coaching,
  • Increased productivity, and
  • Earlier adjustments to strategy.

Most salespeople won’t optimize their efforts without proactive debriefing and strategy development.  In virtually all cases, this requires the sales leader.  Well-planned, adopted and utilized CRM is necessary for this.

I reached out to our partners at Membrain, a world-class CRM tool, for their thoughts. Recently, they were named Best Sales CRM in the 2013 Top Sales Awards.

Leadership adoption is critical.  This doesn’t mean just talking about the virtues and critical reasons for using CRM.  In the movie “We Were Soldiers”, Mel Gibson tells his troops that the paratroopers have a rule: the officer is always the first one out of the plane.  If sales leadership uses the tool daily, the team will be more inclined and encouraged to do so.  If the CEO uses it and makes this known, people will pay attention.  However, if leadership fails to do this, the initiative will very likely fail.

Many salespeople don’t make the connection between using CRM and it’s value.  They see it as an unnecessary burden.  Much of this derives from their often unstructured and non-detailed styles.  Leadership has to work tirelessly to close this gap and show the salespeople that it’s not just a reporting tool.  All efforts should go toward ensuring that it helps the sales team execute the sales strategy, follow their process, get better coaching and win more profitable and satisfied clients.

It must be incredibly easy to use.  When used properly, it will impact their workday tremendously.  It cannot be an obstacle for the sales people.

It can't be seen as stand-alone software, it needs to tie into and support the overall sales strategy, reinforce the training programs and encourage best-practice behavior.

Visibility and awareness are crucial.  Salespeople need to know the rules and have a clear, accurate picture of where they stand.  Combining this with healthy competition helps.  Spend time discussing with your team (group and individually) what the conversion ratios are, what the optimum sales cycle is, who is getting traction quickly and who’s moving opportunities through the process more consistently.  Send out daily updates, based on your observations of the data.

For those of you who may be interested in learning more about being an effective sales leader, our expert team at Kurlan & Associates is presenting an upcoming, complimentary webinar on February 5:  "Leading Your Ideal Sales Force - Part 1" at 11:00AM Eastern Time.  Please do consider registering.

 

Topics: Sales Coaching, sales training, sales competencies, sales management best practices, sales lessons, crm, sales pipeline, sales funnel, recruiting sales people

Saying No to Prospects Makes Salespeople More Effective

Posted by Chris Mott on Wed, Sep 09, 2009 @ 16:09 PM

 

There is a great video going around which illustrates how absurd prospects sound when they start negotiating. It's absurd because of the context, "I budgeted for a trim but I want color highlights for free, perhaps if my husband approves I'll pay you next time."

We know this strategy won't work in the "real world" and yet when we are selling the rules change. Why is this?

We are afraid of losing the deal so we act desperate; our pipeline is empty so we put all our energy into saving one deal and avoid looking for new business. We make excuses about the economy; commiserate with our peers and further erode our personal bravery.

Let's consider why prospects negotiate.

  • It works
  • They can say they tried
  • It gives them a sense of power
  • They like to manipulate people
  • They are testing you
  • They will buy only on price

If the underlying reason that prospects negotiate aren't based on price, there is very little risk in saying "no" to them.  You can't loose the deal - you don't have it yet. Salespeople must learn how to say no and see what happens. If a prospect needs to buy and wants your help, statistics, while they won't predict this do show that you're very likely to remain in the game after you say no. The problem is with you, what you're thinking and how this affected your actions. Stand up for yourself and do the right thing. No one but you can take responsibility for being treated fairly and professionally.

Topics: sales competencies, sales pipeline, under achievement, selling tips, increasing sales

Subscribe to Email Updates

Scan the QR Code with your smartphone for immediate access to Chris Mott.

Chris Mott LinkedIn

Sales Leadership Intensive

http://www.kurlanassociates.com/sales-leadership-event/

hiring mistake calc