Mar 09 2009
Failing to focus salespeople’s activity reduces efficiency and consequently reduces results, because there is not a salesperson alive that believes they have enough time in their working week to complete all the activities they want to achieve! Time is a huge constraint on their activities so that when their manager asks them for more, it is no wonder that they are overwhelmed.
Secondly, but equally important, salespeople often are not clear about how to identify the prospects most likely to have a genuine need for their product or service. Without an objective way to prioritise which prospects to contact first and/or an efficient strategy for contacting them, salespeople are doomed to waste a large percentage of their time. Another huge dilemma for many salespeople is how to divide their time between servicing existing clients and generating new business from new prospects.
Existing clients frequently make requests for service that could be dealt with by support staff. But salespeople who lack a disciplined, future-orientated plan for generating new contacts and sales often find themselves spending more time attending to “urgent” tasks for existing accounts instead. A common approach among salespeople can be summarised in the saying “If you throw enough mud against the wall, some of it is bound to stick.” This approach is exhausting, demoralising, extremely unproductive, and very expensive in the long term.
Far too frequently, competent salespeople are expected to channel their own activities into the areas that will produce the quickest wins. Unfortunately, left to their own devices, they don’t develop and pursue a formal strategy for moving a sale tangibly forward during each prospect interaction; neither do they have a clearly defined set of goals against which to measure the progress they are making. Typically, their judgment is based on gut reaction and is purely subjective i.e., “Oh yes, I’ll get that order, he likes me”, because salespeople have to be optimistic by nature. They end up “dancing around” with prospects, in the hope that eventually they will get to their chosen point on the dance-floor i.e. -the sale. In this scenario, the customer has complete control.
Over at Top 10 Sales Articles, we have announced the February Top Sales Article Of The Month, and you will most certainly enjoy it – just click on the banner above.
Over at TSE Dailies, today Maureen Blandford is in interview with: Dave Brock, of Partners In Excellence
“In these challenging times, many of us think that we need to drive harder to keep up. Not so, says Dave Brock, with Partners In Excellence. There’s not a selling organization today who couldn’t benefit from letting up on the gas to better gauge their situation.” Another banner click away below.
Tomorrow: News of a brand new book and an upcoming event, plus of course the JF Guest Author Spot – so be sure to join me.