Spring Clean Your Sales Strategy

Start Your Second Quarter with Clear Expectations that Drive Sales Results

As we all know, the groundhog saw his shadow this year, and we experienced six more weeks of winter. Well, the six weeks are almost over, the official day of spring is around the corner, and the first quarter of 2014 is coming to a close.

In the classic movie Groundhog Day, directed by the late, great Harold Ramis, the character Phil (played by Bill Murray) said: 

“When Chekhov saw the long winter, he saw a winter bleak and dark and bereft of hope. Yet we know that winter is just another step in the cycle of life. But standing here among the people of Punxsutawney and basking in the warmth of their hearths and hearts, I couldn’t imagine a better fate than a long and lustrous winter.”

How lustrous were your winter sales months? Everyone is closing in on the first quarter of their sales quotas. If your salespeople are not achieving their sales numbers, do you really think they understand the activities needed to achieve the assigned quotas? Are the activities necessary for achievement clearly articulated and celebrated?

Successful salespeople understand the tasks needed to achieve results because they were either coached by a sales manager on the behaviors necessary to deliver the desired sales numbers, or they were blessed to figure it out.

Not all salespeople receive the same blessings. For your salespeople who are not reaching the desired results, the front line sales managers need to come out from the shadows of winter and look into the employee’s numbers. January and February are apparent, and March is here.

Here’s what you need to ask yourself about your sales process: 

  • Are sales reports reviewed and discussed with the salesperson?
  • Are the sales numbers hiding in a CRM or dashboard with no conversation?
  • Are tasks and activities being related to sales results?

Whether the salesperson is achieving the desired results or lagging in the sales numbers, both types of salespeople need feedback and an understanding of what behaviors and activities they need to perform for the desired results. You don’t know what you don’t know. People learn through reflection. If you want your sales staff be held accountable for results, the numbers need to be reviewed.

In most sales cycles, it is the activities and tasks assigned that will create the results you need.

Start the second quarter off by making sure everyone understands activities needed to make the numbers.  The strategy needs to be communicated with clear expectations to be executed and an explanation of required activities—not just the number to hit. Just saying “close more sales” will not change behavior.  

Before the shadows of winter leave us, look at your salespeoples’ activities and identify the gaps. Don’t go into another sales season without cleaning up from the last one. If the numbers are not where you want them to be, examine the processes that got you the numbers you have, and create next quarter’s winning strategy.  

For help with sales strategy and execution, you can always count on 19 Oaks. Contact us today for more information.