Gil Cargill ( http://www.gilcargill.com ) flew in from Los Angeles last week and conducted a “Sales Training” workshop to 2 dozen Austin owners, presidents and CEOs. Members rated him 4.6 on content and delivery out of 5. If you are dissatisfied with your YTD sales performance, sales process and/or your hiring process here are a few nuggets that if you aren’t doing or measuring you might consider implementing for the balance of 2011. Here’s a few statistics that got my attention, yes …figure’s lie and liars figure… yet the thought is compelling.

91% of deals don’t close as expected

85% of companies don’t have a documented sales process

51% of sales people missed quota last year

85% have no documented plan

73% have no plan for their top 5 accounts

What I liked about his approach was the down to earth “tired and proven” approach to sales training. Example and 1st KPI (Key Performance Indicator) when going through the interview process have the candidate present his or her telling session to you. Stop them if they start out with …I normally start with… have them see you as a prospect and ask them to do what they are currently doing now. Have them come back and sell you on their current product or service. Gill says and I agree it’s a great way to see actual performance you can expect when and if he or she goes to work for you.

The 2nd KPI is to start immediately and measure weekly “1st meetings”. Excellent metric on making sure out bound prospecting is being done to the level needed to gain new customers and new sales. Have sales team set their weekly goals and you as the owner, sales manager chart, post and/or send weekly updates. Create a sense of urgency suggests to your sales team that what they say and commit to will be measured.

That which gets measured, gets managed and that which gets managed gets done.

 

3rd KPI is determining where is your sweet spot, who is your preferred client and asking current customers why do they buy from you verifies or validates your brand promise and customer satisfaction. This is your role as a small business owner, president or CEO. Go see your top 5 clients, exchange your contact information and let them know they have a direct line to you if your brand promise isn’t meeting their expectations.

Here’s a short list of other critical success factors focused on activity for you and your sales team to be measuring:

  • # of New contacts
  • # of targets
  • # of customer site visits
  • # of deals & dollars at Info phase
  • # of deals & dollars at decision point
  • # of deals & dollars closed
  • Average sales cycle duration
  • Mile stones accomplished
  • # of proposal presentations
  • # of current accounts visited
  • # of orders closed

Gil shared that sales is not a contact sport it is about relationships. If you believe this to be true for you and your company then here’s what Rick L’Amie, president of Moxie Marketing http://getmoxiemarketing.com/and a Vistage Trusted Advisor suggested to me last month when discussing “relationship selling”.

You want the prospect to get to know you and you them

You want the prospect to like you and you them

Then and only then will trust take place

…between them and you

In closing, today our suspect, prospect, client or customer is far more knowledgeable, better read and most if not all have access to search engines on the internet. By creating weekly, monthly, 100 day targets or milestones, measuring activity, and working to improve your process how can you not become more successful, more profitable with a better life balance?

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