Sales Leadership: The Impact of Creating a Sales Process

September 23rd, 2012

 Sales Leadership: The Impact of a Creating a Sales Process 

It occurs almost every time I speak or every initial client visit. Whether your organization is using CRM or not I find that most organizations have not taken the time to define, write out and train their sales team on how to use prescriptive a sales process.  Why is this important enough to write about? The Results!

Recently in working with a client we spent about two hours simply documenting what a salesperson should do on each of the various steps of their sales process, it enlightened the existing sales manager and created the beginning of a new sales driven culture for the company.  What happened?

  1. 1.       In forcing the process of “thinking through’ the logical progression and the actual actions the salesperson should take, we altered the second step and changed “what “the salesperson was to say and sell during that stage.

 

  1. 2.       We created one additional professional service product that could be re-sold.

 

  1. 3.       The Sales Manager began to fully understand not only what the steps in the sales process were, but more importantly WHY the salesperson needs to execute on them.

 

  1. 4.       Actual definitions of each action within each stage were specifically defined.  Why is this important?  Pipeline values become more accurate. Let me describe this in more detail.  Let’s assume there is a “demonstration” stage in your sales cycle, next ask yourself, when do your salespeople move the prospect to the demo stage: When it is scheduled? Or after it is completed? This is an example of the kinds of detail that will come out during the process.

 

  1. 5.       During the sales process your companies Value Proposition must be proven. You can build a step or an action that takes place at the appropriate stage that can validate your messaging.  We created what we expect to be a unique idea for the client to prove theirs.

 

  1. 6.       One of the most important aspects of creating a prescriptive sales process is changing the sales process!  What I mean is; if you and your competitors use the basic sales stages in the same sequence and say and do the same things no one stands out and prospect becomes confused. When there is confusion, generally there is no decision.  Change your sales process to stand out, be different and make the customer remember you. Refer to my previous blog on the End of Solution Sales.

 

  1. 7.        We added a last step: a follow up at 90 days post implementation/installation to validate customer satisfaction and ask for a reference letter.

 

The next step is for the sales manager to roll you the process, teach the salespeople how to execute and then “inspect what you expect” that the sales team is using the process as it is defined.  Set a 90 day plan in place to implement and evaluate the results;  create four or five metrics to measure its effectiveness, validate it is being used and to listen to your team. If it needs to be altered to increase effectiveness that is ok, but before you change-make sure you are fully understand the impacts.

Let me know your thoughts on creating a sales process. What has worked for you? What hasn’t?

Acumen Management Group Ltd. “operationalizes” sales management systems and processes that pull revenue out of the doldrums into the fresh zone. During the past 12 years, our consulting, advisory, and platform services have illuminated, motivated, and rejuvenated the sales efforts for partners throughout North America. Ken’s latest book is “Leading High Performance Sales Teams”.

 

Ken provides Keynotes, consulting services and products designed to improve business performance.           Ken@AcumenMgmt.com   www.AcumenManagement.com

3f4qb8v9ge

This entry was posted on Sunday, September 23rd, 2012 at 8:26 pm and is filed under Leadership Management, sales leadership, Sales Leadership Training, Sales Management Consulting, Sales Management Training. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

4 Responses to “Sales Leadership: The Impact of Creating a Sales Process”

  1. Jenny Says:

    Sales professionals, I find, tend to follow a ‘process’, whether or not its loosely defined by the management team or by their own workflow. To your point, however, a strong sales engine always has a process by which to generate leads, push them through the pipeline, close leads, and ultimately deliver a service or product to a client. Most companies don’t do a very good job of clearly defining each step in the sales process so as to determine where there may be weaknesses. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Sourcing3 Buyer & Supplier Magazine - Best of B2B Marketing Zone for Week of September 22, 2012 Says:

    […] Sales Leadership: The Impact of Creating a Sales Process YOUR SALES MANAGEMENT GURU | SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2012 […]

  3. Sourcing3 Buyer & Supplier Magazine - Best of B2B Marketing Zone for September, 2012 Says:

    […] Sales Leadership: The Impact of Creating a Sales Process Sales Leadership: The Impact of a Creating a Sales Process  . It occurs almost every time I speak or every initial client visit. Whether your organization is using CRM or not I find that most organizations have not taken the time to define, write out and train their sales team on how to use prescriptive a sales process.  The Results! What happened? MORE >> […]

  4. Nibha Says:

    Hi…thanks a lot for sharing your valuable insights. It is really very helpful….I would also like to share a webinar on “Sales Force Training” http://bit.ly/sR6XGD

    Hope you will like this…:)