Behind every successful sales team, is a sales leader who’s dedicated to ongoing training and sales force development.
This year, be the leader who leads your salespeople to excellence by following these 6 secrets to outstanding sales success.
1. Track the Right KPIs and Data
Without clean data and the right KPIs in place, you won’t be able to identify sales blockers, motivate your team effectively, manage your reps’ time, or coach towards sales development.
To select the right KPIs for your sales organization, follow these rules of thumb:
- Less is More – It can be tempting to track every data point related to the sales department, but the most important information will likely be lost or unactionable if you try to track too much. Keep the total number to 8 or fewer to make your sales meeting scorecard or sales dashboard easy to understand at a glance.
- Leading Indicators Over Lagging Indicators – Focus on “In-Process” measurements like “Appointments Set,” which allow you to coach your reps while they are working towards a goal. Minimize the black and white “End-Process” measurements that don’t foster growth in a sales team since the sale is over before any improvement can occur.
- Use it or Lose It – If you’ve chosen your KPIs and you realize there are some that are less impactful or that you’re not using them to take action, don’t be afraid to adjust or remove them.
Here are some of the most common KPIs tracked by sales managers who lead successful sales teams:
- Qualified Leads
- Appointments Set
- Projected Sales Pipeline
- Close Won/Close Lost Rates
- Length of Sales Cycle
- Upsell/Cross-Sell Rates
- New Customers/New Markets
- Quota Attainment
- Customer Lifetime Value
Learn more about choosing and tracking KPIs in this post.
2. Identify Your Sales Success Blockers
Some of the most common blockers to sales success revolve around processes, time management, and efficiency, and include:
- High turnover of sales professionals due to deficiences in the hiring process
- Reps spending too much time with unqualified leads
- Reps spending too much time on high-maintenance prospects or accounts and missing out on higher-potential opportunities
- Lack of a consistent sales process
- Inadequate or non-existent sales skills training for salespeople
- Lack of coaching and reinforcement of successful sales behaviors
Having the right data and KPIs in place will help you to identify the blockers that keep your sales team from reaching its potential.
You can also request a strategy session with one of The Brooks Group’s industry experts to discover the training and resources that can improve your team’s performance.
3. Implement Effective Sales Team Motivation Strategies
Great sales leaders know how to effectively motivate their teams. Here are 2 key things you can do internally to improve sales motivation.
Hire great salespeople naturally motivated by what the job rewards
Not all sales roles are the same. Your sales role may require an aggressive, hunter personality. On the other hand, you may need someone with a friendlier, farmer approach.
The bottom line is that sales professionals who have the correct natural behavior style for the job will be more likely to excel. Use a Whole Person assessment along with behavior style interview questions during the hiring process to be sure you’re hiring people who are naturally wired to thrive in your position.
Choose the right incentives
Part of being an effective sales leader is understanding exactly what motivates your salespeople. Typically, salespeople go into the profession because they’re motivated by money, and the ability to control their own income level.
But if you understand your team’s unique drivers, you can tailor your sales rewards to be even more effective than money alone.
Read more about choosing the right sales incentives here.
4. Invest in an Effective Sales Kickoff Meeting
Once you have a sales enablement strategy in place, it’s important to communicate it to your team. Your Sales Kickoff or National Sales Meeting is a great way to do this.
A well-planned Sales Kickoff should provide the sales training and skills development your team needs, as well as the inspiration and team building that will benefit them throughout the year.
To plan the most productive National Sales meeting in your company’s history, check out these 6 tips.
5. Help Your Sales Reps’ Manage Their Time Wisely
A sales rep’s time is their most valuable asset. If they’re not using it to move opportunities closer to a sale, it’s like throwing money out the window.
Here are 4 tips for helping your salespeople make better use of this precious commodity:
- Eliminate unnecessary tasks. Eliminate, automate, and outsource as many mundane tasks as you can to allow reps to focus on their critical function.
- Be smart with email. Create templates for frequent types of communication and teach your reps to organize their inboxes so they can find what they need quickly. It’s also a good idea to have them implement a policy of checking their inbox at regular intervals instead of leaving it open all day as a distraction.
- Block time and plan the day before. Teach reps to plan each day’s work the day before, and to block time for their critical tasks, especially prospecting, in their calendar.
- Map content to the sales process. Many salespeople waste time every day looking for content to share with prospects, or even creating it themselves. Create a library and map sales content to the process so reps can put their hands on it quickly when they need it.
Learn more about helping your salespeople manage their time here.
6. Manage Your Own Time
As a sales leader you juggle many responsibilities, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Use these 6 tips to master the art of managing your time for greater sales success.
- Prioritize. Identify your mission critical activities and hold the time for them sacred. Plan to fill in less important things at other times.
- Plan each day the day before. At the end of each day, take a few minutes to block time the next day for that day’s top priorities. That way, you can hit the ground running every morning.
- Maintain boundaries. An open-door policy may be great for salespeople, but can distract you from your priorities. Establish “open office” hours and let your team know that you’re not available for walk-ins at other times.
- Be efficient with meetings. Every meeting should have a purpose and an agenda. Keep everyone on track and wrap meetings up on time.
- Coach, don’t sell. It can be tempting to “keep your hand in the game” by continuing to manage a few of your own accounts after you’re promoted to manager. As a sales leader, however, your time is best used coaching rather than selling.
- Implement the 3-2-1 coaching method. Teach your salespeople to solve their own problems by employing the 3-2-1 coaching method.
High-performing sales teams don’t appear out of thin air. They are carefully nurtured and grown with the right training, planning, and leadership—and they are always looking for ways to further improve.
Set your team up for success today, tomorrow, and into the future with a sales enablement plan designed to grow with your business.