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You Are Not Alone

Found some interesting info regarding sales, sales management and sales processes I thought I would share, particularly for those of you who are sales managers.


During the months of March and April 2004 the Sales Activator Company partnered with Nightingale Conant to conduct research designed to identify areas of concern to companies engaged in the retail sales business. The study focused on their sales and sales management process. They conducted this research with 2,663 companies in the U.S. and Europe. 80% of the companies were from the U.S., the balance European.
  • 82.29% of the companies said they were not following the sales processes currently in place.


  • 41.48% indicated their salespeople were performing below expectation


  • 8.13% of salespeople were described as consistent peak performers


  • 90.47% said salespeople failed to maintain a proper balance between prospecting, presentation, negotiation and business management


  • 41.89% train on a sporadic basis


  • 25.32% were not currently engaged in ongoing training


  • 22.36% train weekly


  • 10.43% train monthly


  • 52.34% of sales management say they are too busy or do not have time to train

Is it then any wonder why these companies said their problems relating to sales were lack of direction, missed sales opportunities, discouraged salespeople, turnover and lowered profit expectations? - by Masteri5
Is it then any wonder why these companies said their problems relating to sales were lack of direction, missed sales opportunities, discouraged salespeople, turnover and lowered profit expectations?
What's the solution? - by AZBroker
AzBroker

Hopefully there will be input from many different sources to help answer your question.

There are 9 areas mentioned in the original research, each expressed as a percentage. Maybe the members of the forum can list which item and a possible solution. Maybe with collective thought we can answer the "why" of each. - by Masteri5
Would it be fair to say that the problem for each of these areas involves commitment? - by AZBroker
AZBroker

Commitment...I have to say that word is so loosely thrown about I am not certain people really understand what it is. I have something I have carried with me for over 20 years about commitment that was written by the German philosopher Goethe.

It is a great read for anyone in sales. Also, your post to my other thread about fear of success. Read this and then consider what might be keeping you from operating the successful franchise you talked about.

Best of luck as always...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness, concerning all acts of initiative [and creation]. There is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans; that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.

Whatever you can do or dream, you can begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.
Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

I did not answer your original question. I will do so in another post due to the length of this one. - by Masteri5
AZBroker

Back to your original question about each of these areas. I think the simple answer is certainly "YES". If you look at each area someone, somewhere needs to make a commitment to correcting the deficiency. The problem is that many people in sales use the "ready, shoot, aim" approach to problem solving.

They try to cure before they diagnose.
They schedule more meetings without thought to meeting effectiveness.
They tell their people they are not performing up to standard without offering suggestions for improvement.

The list continues. I would like to see what others here contribute...we can all learn something. - by Masteri5
Great day all,

My name is Miichael Coritsidis and I am a Job Ready Strategist/Motivational Speaker/Life Improvement Coach and I feature my "The Seven Steps to Employment Success System."

In ancient war times there was a Greek General who landed his warriors by ship on an island to face and fight an enemy. To make sure that his warriors would not turn, run and retreat back to the ships but stay and fight, the wise General burned all his ships. His warriors now, had a choice to make, fight and win or not fight and be killed. Which do you think they chose?;sm

Question: Are you willing to burn your ships to succeed?

michaelc. - by job ready strategist
Question: Are you willing to burn your ships to succeed?
I'm not seeing the connection between your post and this thread Michael. What did I miss? - by AZBroker
I cannont concur that the companies lack of sales is a direct result of a lack of training. That's like saying a table has four legs, a dog has four legs, therefore a dog is a table.

I'm sure it contributes greatly to the lack of business, but I'm sure the marketplace, motivational methods, "trimming the fat" and other items contribute strongly too. In a weakening economy (it is weakeing, no matter what the administration says), buyers are always on the alert and have a heightened sense of value. They'll spend less money, spend less frequently, be less willing to take chances on new products, or new sales people and it just tends to be a tougher, more competative market place.

All the training in the world won't fix a guy who just won't pick up the phone and make twice the calls he used to make, to break even for the period.

Training is paramount, because sales is a moving target, but a lack of training I personally feel, is not to blame for a lack of business.

Probably because I'm too busy and do not have time to train :)

LOL

TM - by TommyMac5
I'm not seeing the connection between your post and this thread Michael. What did I miss?
Now I get it. I missed Masteri5's post about Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe. ;sm - by AZBroker
[quote=AZBroker]I'm not seeing the connection between your post and this thread Michael. What did I miss?[/QUOte

Great day AZB,

It speaks to your point about commitment and it's relationship to success. - by job ready strategist
I had missed Masteri5's earlier post about Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe. Now I understand. ;sm - by AZBroker
Is it then any wonder why these companies said their problems relating to sales were lack of direction, missed sales opportunities, discouraged salespeople, turnover and lowered profit expectations?
No.

A question that comes to my mind is why are +82% of the salespeople NOT following the sales processes currently in place? Is this occuring because the salespeople don't understand the processes? Maybe they don't put faith in the processes and believe their way is better? Another question that comes to mind is why is sales management allowing this?

+41% of the salespeople perform below expectation... whose expectations? What are these expectations based on?

+52% of sales management saying they are too busy or don't have time to train tells you what they think about training. It's not a priority. - by BossMan
BossMan

Good post. I have to agree with your remark, or rather question, about why sales management would allow 82% of their salespeople to not follow the process. The truth is most sales managers have not been taught to manage. What they are, typically, is the salesperson who got promoted because they were the top salesperson, been there the longest length of time, why don't we give old Bob a shot, etc. Being a manager is about people skills and leadership. Those skills, like any other, are learned.

With regard to your question about expectations. I do not have all the answers to your questions. I found this info on another site and found it thought provoking. The site did not disclose the criteria for expectations.

About your comment on the priority of training...you said it all.

Best of luck in your endeavors. - by Masteri5
Masteri5:

I believe each post is hitting the mark. Is it sales training? Yep... partly. Commitment? ...Yep ... Partly. What about Accountability and Leadership. If I may, allow me to give my two cents about the reserch.

Out of 100 salespeople... using round numbers; 25 of them worked for companies who were not currently engaged in ongoing training. That leaves 75 salespeople with any chance of success. 52 of them work for companies where management say they are too busy to train (we know they are not too busy making sales). That leaves 23 with any chance for success. If we apply the "Parento Rule" 80% of results will come from 20% of your sales force. That means 5 of the intial 100 will be peak performers. Very close to the study saying 8% are consistant performers.

Problem ... Leadership! Leaders are charged with doing the "Right" thing. Managers are charged with doing the "Right" things ... Right. Leadership needs to put a management driven interview process in place. Management must be accountable for interviewing and hiring salespeople, that exhibit character traits conducive to sales and their Company objectives.

Management at the direction of the Leader must adopt a training process that is ongoing.

Creating a "Professional Sales Staff" requires more that a hiring process and more than a training program. It requires a complete system approach.

More specifically, for a "Professional Development" program to be truly effective, it must be directly related to the Companies stated objectives and the Company Leadership and Management must creat, develop, embrace and maintain an environment rooted in ongoing and life long learning. - by Gregoire
Gregoire

Intelligence in an open forum. What a concept...great post. - by Masteri5
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