Since 1995 I have been leading and managing sales teams and throughout that journey my constant preoccupation has been ‘what guarantees sales success’? For many years I was not sure that there was a simple answer to that but over time what I have learned is that there are a few key issues that befall every business at one time or another that will always create sales lethargy.
To really hit the growth and profit targets that a business is capable of it needs a certain set of conditions, it needs to have the correct environment within which to thrive. It is isolating this conditions and being able to control them that bring ultimate sales success. If you observe any of these 5 sales barriers in your business then you can be sure that you can definitely sell more.
Consistency is about your business being absolutely clear about what it wants and what it does. Your staff members need to have real clarity of expectations and your clients need to have concise messaging. A really strong business has a high level of consistency both internally and externally and a great growth plan will define this.
Defining Question: Has my business laid down clear guidelines about how our staff and clients should be managed?
The way that your team is shaped and the way that they operate impacts directly on its success. The resources in your business who impact upon the customer journey need to be fit for their roles and well supported so team structure is a key consideration in shaping a winning team. Additionally you need a rigour to the way in which your resources work – a strong performance process will ensure efficiency and productivity in your team and will maximise the results that they deliver for you.
Defining Question: Have we devised and implemented a solid process for delivering sales?
Most businesses know pretty quickly when their sales team are not performing effectively – but that knowledge is rarely enough alone to make an impact. Once a lack of results is identified there are so many steps that have to be put in place. The business needs great analysis and reviewing ability to quickly identify what is impacting on the lack of results and what I know is that often gut instinct does not provide the right answer. Once the business is absolutely certain about what its blockers are in then needs the right skills to address those issues, often this requires coaching, change management, process enhancement, skills that are not innate in many teams.
Defining Question: Do we have clear performance measures and means of addressing them when they fall?
A high performing culture is a very powerful thing and all solid research shows that team members who are motivated to perform by loyalty and passion for the company perform better, are easier to manage and stay longer. Embedding a high performing culture in a business is about first understanding what defines a great a culture and then reviewing how your business is performing in that area. Building a high performing culture is essential to achieveing your highest growth aspirations.
Defining question: Have you built a team of loyal, engaged staff who feel positively about their career with our business?
What you business is saying to the world and how is key. Too many times I work with businesses who provide little or no guidelines to their teams on how to present their company to the public. Those that do provide such guidelines have big challenges around how to check and maintain quality. The bottom line is that if you cannot be certain that face to face meetings, phone calls and emails to your clients and prospects adhere to certain standards and practices you cannot be sure that you are having the right influence over your market.
Defining question: Am I confident that my client facings teams share a high quality and consistent message with my clients at all times.
The problems that I recognise with businesses who are straining to meet their growth goals are either that they struggle to identify which one of these areas is there biggest concern or that they are unable to create the turnaround that they need to really make an impact on sales.
If you like many businesses are answering NO to anyone of those questions above then you will find the Three Pillars or Successful Selling of great value. It will guide you through the steps that you need to turn all of those into Yeses and to smash through your sales goals.