Do You Have A 90 Day Success Plan For New Sales Representatives?

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Fortune 500 companies have a structured �On Boarding Process� which every new sales person follows. The plan lays out detailed time lines and benchmarks, specific action items and goals. This formal process is great for both the company and the new representative because it leaves nothing to interpretation and establishes shared expectations. The initial training is structured and detailed; giving your new employee the knowledge and confidence that your organization has a plan and intends to succeed.

The problem lies with many of the small to mid-sized businesses I work with on a daily basis. In most cases, these are owner-operated companies where the on boarding process and training falls to the owner or manager of a small sales team. Although the intentions are always good, I regularly hear from the new sales person that there was no process in place and they spent too much valuable time trying to figure out what to do and how to do it. Secondly, the new rep is often not sure what is expected of them in terms of direction and performance. �Welcome to the company. Here’s your price book, now go out and sell,� is not a recipe for success or a viable On Boarding Process!

Not having a process in place from day one results in the sales person losing direction and becoming frustrated, and the business owner being disappointed and fearing they have made the wrong hiring decision. So how do you fix this problem? First, regardless of the size of your organization, you must develop a written plan of action that lays out specific actions, goals and timelines for the first 30, 60 & 90 days, with a continuing plan for the first year. This may sound like a daunting task but it is actually much easier than you would think.

If you are the business owner & COE (Chief of Everything), you should look for outside expertise to assist you with this process. This can be an inexpensive way to develop a quick start program allowing you to remain focused on revenue driving activities. After all, you most likely hire an accountant, web-designer, and IT firm so why would you attempt to self manage the one area of your organization which directly affects your bottom line? Each dollar in lost sales opportunity is revenue you will never recover.

The complete 90 day plan needs to include goals, activities, product training, competition, prospecting, order processing, customer service, market evaluations, performance metrics, as well as simple things like getting to know your company and its people. Once you have a sales process in place, your new sales rep will be highly motivated, more confident and able to perform better.

You may be a good driver but will you take the time to teach your son or daughter to drive or would you rather they go to an accredited driving school? Besides, if they learn from a driving school, the insurance companies will provide a discount. It’s a better ROI for you and less stress for your kids. The same theory applies to your On Boarding Process. What’s the fastest way to make a new sales person profitable?

Sales Strategies – If Hamlet Was In Sales

As a fellow salesperson, you and I know that sometimes selling can feel awfully difficult. If your numbers just aren’t where you want them to be or maybe a few sales have fallen through on you recently; you can feel frustrated, bummed out, scared or all three. So, how does a salesperson keep focused and positive while moving diligently forward? You need a SALES STRATEGY.

I’ll give you two sales strategies that you can use any time to get yourself on track and keep yourself there. The first strategy will be for your mental game: how you think and feel. The other one will be for your mechanical game: what you actually do.

For the mental sales strategy you absolutely have to keep things in the proper perspective. You may recall this quote from Hamlet. Now, I may have read the Cliffs Notes for Hamlet in High School; I don’t remember, but I did learn this line at some point and it stuck with me.

�for there is nothing either good or
bad, but thinking makes it so.�

We may THINK that we are having a hard time selling, but by changing what or who we compare ourselves too, we can immediately feel better about where we are in life. Therefore, by changing our overall feeling in general for the better, our sales results will improve in kind.

Think about this. Over half of the world’s population lives on less than $2 per day! Now maybe that is too extreme for you but you can easily think about how many people in this world are worse off than you are right now and compare yourself to them. Think about how many people have no job whatsoever and they are not in a sales position where they can actually earn their keep with their company.

Everything is relative. Have some perspective and compare yourself to the majority of people who would trade places with you in a heartbeat. Then you can feel what you should feel� grateful for all that you have and are.

The mechanical sales strategy is creating a sales plan. Anyone in sales has to have a specific sales plan. The problem for most sales people is that most of us are just winging it and that will only lead to mediocre results at best. You have to know exactly what you want to accomplish and create a sales plan for how to get there.

Sales Management – What Every Sales Manager Out To Know About Lead Generation

There are many ways your staff can add to profits by generating leads but many representatives are so used to running company leads, they walk past opportunities to generate sales. Many ignore management requests to prospect. Getting these extra opportunities is one of the goals of good sales management as these leads cost the company nothing and can add significantly to income.

Each industry and type of selling is different but your staff should be contributing significantly to your profits by generating leads. Here are a few basic techniques that will increase income significantly with proper sales management. Use these simple techniques to focus your staff on creating leads and sales every day.

Calling On Neighbors

One very easy change to your corporate culture that reflects good sales management is making it mandatory to call on neighbors. Every time a member of your team makes a call on a customer, they should call on neighbors. These techniques work in the consumer and in the business world. Everyone and every company has neighbors. Good sales management might require each representative to talk with three neighbors on every visit to a customer. This sales management techniques turns one appointment into possibly three. Set numbers that must be achieved such as one appointment per 10 neighbors called on. This one technique will increase the number of presentations your staff performs each and every week with no cost for advertising. This will only work if the sales manager insists on receiving the three names, addresses and phone numbers called on as part of every visit report and if they keep track of how many appointments are generated from the neighbors contacted.

Reporting Referrals

Referrals aren’t a successful source of leads at many companies because the manager does not make it work. You need to work out a goal for referrals with your staff that they agree to. Then, good management requires that you work with them to develop a smooth script that works and get them to practice it until it becomes second nature. Finally, a good manager will make it part of every sales call to include a list of referrals obtained and to keep track of how many turned into appointments and sales. It is only by keeping track of the numbers, congratulating team members that met or exceeded the goals and assisting those who did not that your goals will be met.

Joining An Executive Club

Another good sales management technique is to require every team member to join and be active in executive clubs such as the Chamber Of Commerce, Business Networks International and others. A good sale manager will work with each team member on how to get names and appointments at meetings. In addition, for this to be effective, the sales manager must keep track of how many contacts were harvested at each meeting and how many contacts and appointments and sales resulted.