Let's get right into it. One of the things that happens in my business, because we offer so much individual coaching with all of our programs, is people will constantly call me and say,
This week, I've got another crazy idea for you... and it just applies to so many things and I think it's a lesson or a saying that we've all heard many times in our lives that tries to get us to really focus on the right thing to do or the right thing to believe in.
Welcome back to another Growth Dynamics Friday Fast Tip. I'm Charlie Hauck, founder and lead trainer Growth Dynamics.
As the calendar indicates the New Year is fast approaching, it is prime time for sales management to ask some challenging questions about their team’s performance. Most sales managers find that checking the final numbers for their team satisfies their desire to evaluate what happened over the previous 12 months. But are those results the real story of how your team performed or could they be hiding some important facts that require a deeper look?
Julie felt conflicted as she listened to the other members of the sales team talk about how they were going to spend the big commissions everyone was earning this quarter. The sales managers created a program that paid bonus dollars to everyone’s comp plan if they sold the base products and three or more add-ons to at least 50% of their customers for this quarter. The payoffs added potentially 50% to the average commission for anyone that made the extra effort. Julie was not troubled by the amount of money on the table, but she was troubled by the way a few of the top producers were willing to take advantage of some of their customers to qualify for the extra pay. It seemed to Julie that these people were crossing the line, and to her that was greedy and perhaps unethical. Of course, she wanted the extra money, but Julie felt like life was good and that the incentive was nice, but not all that motivating.
Ruben was excited about the call he just finished with the Facilities Manager at a school in his territory. The situation was a perfect fit for his company's new line of industrial faucets. Plus, the Facilities Manager told him the hardware needed to be installed ASAP or the school would face a fine from the local building inspector. Ruben couldn't help but feel this was one of those sales that all salespeople dream about, a prospect that had to buy right now and they had to buy a product Ruben could deliver. And when the timeline was ASAP, Ruben thought this was going to be a quick and painless sale. So, six weeks later, why was he still wondering when the PO was going to show up in his inbox?
If you are near my age 60+ that line might remind you of the classic television show “Dragnet.” Sgt. Joe Friday, the lead detective, was constantly reminding the people (suspects, witnesses, victims) that he interviewed to just give him the facts, nothing but the facts while he interviewed them. Friday didn’t want any of the emotional debris these people would try to add to their account of what happened. “Just the facts” was all Friday could work with, and none of the emotions could change those facts.
I often debrief sales calls with my clients and hear of the great opportunities they’ve just uncovered, but the longer we discuss what happened the reality about the greatness of the opportunity changes dramatically. One particular part of a successful call tends to be missing when the salesperson shares the details of the call. That missing element more often than not is that no deadline of timeline has been agreed to or even discussed. And for my money, when you don’t have a deadline for a decision there is not much of a chance of completing a sale.
Don’t Be That Guy.
Too many salespeople run their sales model the same way they get cash from an ATM machine; they don’t really know how much money they have until they go punch in their PIN and see if there is anything in the account. In other words, many don’t even look at their account until they need some cash, and too often they are shocked by how low their balance is. You can’t run your sales machine the same way.