Building A World Class Sales Force
The linchpin to this entire process is the sales effort. Unfortunately, many companies are run by people who have never been salespeople on the street themselves. For this reason, they have no understanding of the central importance of the sales effort. They think that you just place a couple of ads, hire a couple of salespeople and the business just rolls in the door. They are often baffled when sales fall off, no one responds to the advertising and the salespeople don’t sell anything. All successful, profitable companies, without exception, have superb salespeople. These people have been carefully recruited by top professional managers. They have been thoroughly trained, sometimes for many months. They are professionally managed, day-by-day and week-by-week, by excellent sales executives who know exactly what they are doing, based on many years of experience. Sometimes, just bringing in a new sales executive or manager can boost sales dramatically and transform the results of an entire company.
Your ability to field a world-class sales team is the key your success in any market. This is an area that requires real focus and attention, and never more so than when the market becomes tougher and more competitive.
The Pivotal Skill
Building an effective sales force, from the initial recruiting through to the training, and on to the day-to-day management, is both an art and a science. It is the pivotal skill in any company that depends on sales for the success of the business. The sales force is like the engine of the automobile. Its horsepower and efficiency determines the speed and effectiveness of the entire vehicle.
Many companies transform their results by focusing single-mindedly on the sales effort. They set clear parameters for the kind of salespeople they want, recruit carefully, train them thoroughly and manage them professionally. As a result, their sales and cash flow increase dramatically, and they can weather any market.
Sell More Effectively:
1. What is the exact sales process necessary to sell your product or service, from the first customer contact through to the close of the sale? Do you know? How could it be improved?
2. What must your prospective customer be convinced of before he chooses your product over that of your competitor?
3. If money were no object, what special results or benefits do you offer in your sales efforts that make your product more desirable than any other available?
4. What is your process for recruiting salespeople? What media do you use? What levels of education and experience do you require?
5. What kind of a compensation system do you have for salespeople? What is it based on? How could it be improved so that it motivates better sales performance?
6. How much of your business comes from referrals from happy customers? How could you increase the number of referrals you get as a percentage of your business?
7. Why aren’t your sales twice as high already? What sales efforts could you make to tap into that 80% of the market that has never heard of you?
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