There’s one reason over all the others people call me in to help them – and it’s almost always they want to sell more. One thing about these conversations fascinates me. It’s always the sales team’s fault. Here’s why that’s very often just not the case.
Why are sales results bad?
It’s always a good start to the conversation to explore the reasons for the sales shortfall and the sorts of solutions the client has in mind.
The ideas the client suggests are often draconian. “Should I fire them all, they’re a bunch of lazy wasters?” Or an approach based on desperation. “Should we slash our prices?” Sometimes you meet a more 21st century approach. “Can you train them to sell?”
Whilst it may be true the underlying lack of sales is a problem with the sales team, it completely ignores that fact it might be something else.
When you start evaluating the options, sacking and replacing the sales team is neither easy nor cheap. Slashing prices can be disastrous. Arranging some sales training is straightforward and generally good value. But it isn’t necessarily the right answer.
At the end of every training session I deliver I hand out a simple form asking for feedback. Almost without exception, you get a comment along the lines of “Management need to play their part too”. I always make it my business to seek out the commenter, and quietly ask them what they mean.
That’s when you start getting closer to facts. Very often you discover the sales training – or worse the sacking and hiring of a new sales team – isn’t going to address some deeper underlying problems.
It’s a very common problem
I’d go so far as to say that in more than 80% of the companies I work with, there’s not a whole lot wrong with the sales team. Apart from a lack of motivation, training and support resulting from the underlying problems.
Much more often they’re being asked to accomplish some loosely defined objectives without a clear something to sell to a nebulous bunch of mysterious buyers and a me-too marketing approach.
And that is the problem. Nobody has taken the time to really think about these four key points and how they combine to create a solid sales strategy that’s different to the competition:
- WHAT are we selling?
- WHO are we selling it to?
- HOW will we supply our customers?
- And with those three out of the way, is our OBJECTIVE reasonable?
Here’s a simple solution
Because I meet this situation so often, I have created a simple workbook “Kick-Start Sales and Marketing Plan” that explains the theory and then provides spaces for you to write the answers for your company.
It’s a simple five step plan that asks you to answer just 28 questions that will shape your STRATEGY, sort your MARKETING and get you SELLING MORE! You can download a FREE copy to see if it might be able to help you.
Here’s what to do next
If you’re interested in how this could help you, or feel I may be able to help you with some of the challenges you’re facing, please get in touch for an informal discussion.
There’s no commitment, we’ll just discuss your situation to see if working together might be a good fit. Contact me now.