We're constantly being asked by our clients about where sales managers should be spending their time. Here’s the challenge. No matter what one’s position in life may be, whether it’s a CEO, Vice President of Sales, Regional Sales Manager, President of a country or the general of an army, there is one common characteristic. Each has an equal allotment of time. Every person has the same amount. We all have 168 hours a week, 52 weeks a year. You can’t buy more, barter for more, lease more or even manufacture more. The most fundamental sales management success factor centers around this simple reality. And your success will ultimately be defined by your answer to this question. How well do you maximize the time you have?
Wondering Where Sales Managers Should Be Spending Their Time? Not Here!
It’s not unusual for sales leaders or sales managers to spend (or waste) most of their time on issues created by salespeople whose potential is limited or whose performance is sub-par. Some examples include:
- Calming upset customers, prospects or co-workers
- Correcting errors and mistakes
- Providing emotional support
- Traveling to assist in failed sales efforts
- Answering redundant questions
- Seeing no return on the investment made into sub-par performers
- Endlessly wondering why performance fails to get better despite all your work
Now... look through that list and score yourself on how many of those issues you're dealing with. If you can say you were doing 3 or more actions in the above list within the last week, well… in my experience, it’s time to evaluate "big picture" what’s going on inside of your sales organization.
Here’s the bottom line. You need to ask yourself two very important questions: 1. Would you get a better return on your time if you invested more of it with top performers who, with a slight modification to their current practices, could become great performers? 2. Are you better off being dragged into issue after issue that the sub-par performers create? The answer should be obvious. In today’s marketplace, you can’t allow unhappy salespeople or poor performers to hang around too long. A process for solving performance problems and then moving on has to be established and implemented. Sounds harsh? In today’s marketplace, if you have too many sub-par performers your entire organization may not be around too long. So move fast. Make your decision. Take back your time! If you're finding yourself caught up in the activity trap of wasting your time with unproductive activities, I urge you to take a look at our Sales Management Symposium by clicking here.