Your sales reps need to be more productive than ever. There are fewer companies with purchasing budgets. You likely have fewer sales reps. Therefore, each deal is more crucial. Every deal matters. How do you want them to prioritize their time?
How do you ensure that your reps don’t spend time:
- Working deals that aren’t qualified?
- Working only deals where prospects are responsive and ignoring the rest?
- Wasting time entering information in the CRM?
- Staying single-threaded on deals?
- Proactively planning the deals based on risk and buying intent.
- Focusing time on the deals that are most likely to close.
- Working effectively with managers and other peers to drive a deal forward.
- Spending time preparing for meetings.
While that might have worked years ago, will not work now that almost everything is done digitally and remotely. There is less time – more accounts, more dis-engaged buyers, less budget, and even more competition. Expecting reps to waste 20% of their time updating CRM (nearly 10 hours a week!) – is just plain wrong. Expecting reps to change their habits and become proactive about their time suddenly without providing them the tools to help manage their large number of accounts and opportunities – is wishful thinking. Expecting managers to know how to coach reps differently without full opportunity context – not going to be as effective as it could be.
Meanwhile, your competitor’s reps:
- Are not wasting time manually updating their CRM. It’s updated automatically.
- Are proactively focusing on deals that are at risk based on risk, sentiment, and engagement measures.
- Know when to walk away, when to pull in internal stakeholders, and don’t fixate on one contact and “work” the entire buying team.
You need to drive a formal process and invest in the right tools and training to reinforce that process so that you arm for reps and managers to “truly” be effective.
Again, who is more likely to be more productive? Your competitor or your sales reps?
Arm your sales team with a proactive planner.
Planning on a week to week basis is critical for sales success. Time management skills and proper planning are several of the top priorities when sales leaders are looking for new reps.
I spoke with the VP of Sales at a mid-market sales organization earlier this week, and he said: