Enhancing the sales department: areas to look into
Sales system comprises many components such as the service, distribution, pricing policy, etc. The more effective each component is, the higher are the sales and profits. Of course, companies know about that and try to enhance each and every aspect of their business operation. That being said, the practice shows that some of those aspects are given much less attention than required. In particular, sales performance is the most overlooked one.
What is it and why it is important?
Sales performance is the work intensity, i.e. the volume of objectives accomplished in a particular period. Most owners have a more-is-better attitude when it comes to sales performance. For them, a good result is a high number of deals entered and calls made per day. If there is a plenty of those, that is good. If there is few of those, somebody slacks in the office.
This approach is efficient but it cannot be applied everywhere and all the time. More precisely, it only works when you have many clients whom neither you nor your competitors have worked with. Yet if the competition is tense in your segment and the client has a choice, then offering a good product will not be enough. He/she needs to be convinced to buy exactly from you.
In this case, sales performance does not strongly depend on the personal qualities of a sales manager anymore. It rather depends on the manager’s awareness of the goods, his/her knowledge of specifics of the company’s operation, the ability to draw attention and kindle one’s interest, etc. The development of such qualities is hardly the only task of an employee. It is also an investment a company can benefit from. After all, the better the sales manager is, the more profit he/she brings. Alas, not all companies are ready to invest this way for a number of reasons:
- lack of established methods of monitoring sales performance (in addition to the planned KPI)
- lack of confidence that the change in behaviour and practices of the sales process will result in significant results;
- there is a strong emphasis on the product, even if the goal is to “focus on the customer”.
How to remedy the situation?
“By improving the productivity of each and every seller and, thus, enhancing sales of the entire sales department” – put this thesis into practice. Study all associated risks and errors. Analyse the track record of other companies. Conduct an audit of sales systems to detect any strengths and weaknesses in the work of your managers. Moreover, our auditors can and will advise on the steps to be taken for enhancing your sales performance and securing the transparency of sellers. It is particularly important to those owners, who do not have an economics degree.
Ensuring the transparency of sellers, by the way, is the pillar of sales performance management. The less a company’s influence on its sales manager is, the less will be the manager’s commitment to work in a competent manner. Why try when the owner is satisfied with any result and no control over anything? An effective staff incentive system will rectify this situation.
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