Sales Strategy Doesn’t = A Sales Goal
Sales strategy; as a sales leader it is critical to get your sales strategy, structure, culture, systems and sales processes right. Exciting, desirable outcomes happen when all of those factors are operating in sync – when each support is the other.
A high performance and high profit is our function of synchronizing all of these matters. Which one is preventing you from the most sales revenue growth and profits?
Then start there first!
Focus on defining your clients, what they want and how you can best offer it to them. Everyone in your organization be it small, medium or large needs to know what the sales strategy is so they can focus their efforts on delivering it.
Caution Sales Leader- a sales strategy should not be confused with a sales goal.
The first is external (to the market) and the second is internal (such as: to become the # 1 provider of whatever it is you do). Every department, with business unit and salesperson has clients so make sure everyone is focused on serving others, leading to delivering your unique and valuable proposition to the market.
Structure – Sales leader - sales strategy – sales targets
Focus on getting your formal organization right: who is in what job, how much authority each job has and whether the structure is setup to deliver on the Marketing and Sales Strategy. The big question is whether you should be centralized, decentralized, or coordinated through shared services. The sales structure should align with the company’s life cycle: agency, functional, division, matrix, or networked teams.
Most sales structures become so complicated that by the time organizations are large, they have hangover elements from earlier organizational phases. Make sure that the structure allows for successful execution of your strategy. Then the Sales Leadership can really focus on the plan.
Culture focuses on the “operating system” of your organization; the informal relationships between people and their work. Unless your culture is supportive of the other three factors of business success then nothing else will work well. Assess your culture and consider required actions that you may need to take.
When it comes to culture I love the sage advise from Jeff Haddin for words not to use in 2013.
Here is part of what Jeff cleverly discusses:
11 marketing words no one wants to hear in 2013
You say, “We’ll start with the low-hanging fruit.” I hear, “We’ll start with really easy stuff you are too stupid to recognize or too lazy to do yourself.”
No one wants to hear they have low-hanging fruit. Just describe, in cost/benefit terms, how you prioritized your list of projects or activities.
That’s admirable goal, and one every business should aspire to, but exceeding expectations is an internal goal. Tell me you will exceed expectations and exceeded expectations instantly becomes my expectation. (I know that’s kinda Zen.) Tell me what you will do, every time. If you consistently pull that off, I’ll be delighted.
Always let the customer judge whether you go above and beyond.
The ever-increasing pace of commoditization means few products or services have no like or equal for long. If I’m considering hiring your firm or buying your products, “unique” (like “exclusive”) sounds good but describes nothing.
Instead tell me, in concrete terms, how you are better.
This term is often used to imply I’ll get something for no or very little incremental cost. That means what I will receive isn’t value added–it’s part of the overall deal.
So tell me the deal, explain all the options and add-ons, and help me figure out how I can take full advantage of what you provide.
Sales Systems and processes
Focus on the formal methods for getting work done, from the processes that turn raw goods into products (for those with manufacturing plants), to the selection process of matching clients with a team of professionals (as the business services).
The keys to systems are:
1) Look in-depth at all your ways of currently getting work done.
2) Evaluate each of them in terms of whether they add or destroy value to the client (e.g. a step in a system that unnecessarily delays getting back to a client destroys value)
3) Automate as much as you can, so that decisions only need to be made once.
4) Slowly and systematically “walk” through to make sure that every step connects to what comes before and after. In many cases, systems are added that don’t work, are unnecessary, or that are implemented before sales people are ready for them.
Skills, practice, mastery + self determination, motivation and choices + purpose, fulfillment and joy = sales revenue growth success and recognition.
High profits + high performance = Sales Success!
Sales Strategy + Sales Goal Setting + sales leader + structure + culture + Systems and processes