“I am working so hard at sales. Why aren’t my numbers better?” We hear this quite often.
A simple and very effective cure is to start focusing on productivity instead. Sales activity does not mean sales productivity.
To be sure you are focusing on sales productivity, take these action steps:
- Identify Steps in Your Sales Funnel
- Review Sales Tasks
- Focus on Results
Make sure you have identified the steps in your sales funnel. Sometimes called a buying cycle, these are the steps a prospect takes from marketing (or being introduced to you) to close. Focus on the things that move clients through your sales funnel. Test and measure to see which strategy- a direct mail piece or telemarketing- gets you to the next step in your funnel. If you know that you have a great closing rate from the time you sit down face to face to the close, then knowing what works best to get you that face to face is critical.
If you or your sales people are busy, but the sales are not coming in, dig deeper into what the activity is. Activity does not mean productivity. It’s well worth your time to find out what tasks your sales force are engaging in, because they might not be the tasks that will eventually lead to a sale. Perhaps you are not spending enough time on conversion rate strategies.
Focus on the results with yourself and your sales team. Quotas or number of calls to be made can be helpful guidelines, but you should not lose sight that the core reason for having sales: to bring in revenue. Make it clear to yourself and those you are managing that the results are more important than the activity. At the end of the day, it’s not necessarily about how many sales call you made, but what’s the value of your sales!
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