You might find that sales profits can be temperamental — even with an amazing product and USP, prospects may not be biting. Why is this? Great deals benefit from good luck but most often, sales success correlates highly with the skills and best practises of the salesperson. Sales team members need to have affable interpersonal skills in order to build relationships with clients and prospects as well as hone the ability to analyse data if they wish to hit their monthly sales targets.
Promising deals can naturally go awry before reaching their end-goal, but if you find this to be a recurring event then it’s time to consider what might be preventing your sales team closing deals.
It’s vital you take the time to analyse your sales strategy as the capability to meet sales targets and close deals are critical to the success of the company. The sales team is undoubtedly essential in generating profit and too many months of not hitting your sales targets can lead to financial uncertainty and a demotivated team. Changing this, however, only starts with a few easy steps:
Hire the best people
Sales is a specific career path which requires a certain type of people. One of the most important traits a salesperson should have, beyond all else, is a natural passion for sales since that cannot be taught. Salespeople who lack intrinsic motivation will inevitably make more mistakes and be less driven to generate profit. Similarly, hiring those without adequate skills or experience to excel in the role may lead to unmet sales quotas or KPIs.
You can ensure you’re hiring the right people by asking the right questions during the interview process to determine the cultural fit and work attitude of your candidates. In addition to this, you can begin to assess their skills and sales practises by asking competency-based questions.
BMS Performance utilise a 6-step recruitment assessment process before offering the best talent to our clients. You can take advantage of this process in order to hire the right sales candidates. This involves screening your candidates for six essential qualities — presentation, credibility, sales skills, motivated attitude, track record and teamwork. The right hire will have the necessary interpersonal skills to close deals, as well as thrive in a career based on perpetual learning.
Train your team
Untrained sales members may not be aware of the cues they can take advantage of in a situation to tempt prospects into closing a deal. Insufficient training can be a real productivity killer simply in terms of a lack of awareness of best sales practises, but the bright side is that with some coaching, this can easily be changed.
The average company only spends less than 20% of the money they spend hiring a candidate ($10-15k) into training them ($2k), The Bridge Group reports. However, those companies who enable their sales team to be formally coached see an 11% increase in quota attainment compared to other firms as well as a decrease in employee turnover.
This means that investing in your team and training them will ultimately benefit the company through your sales team closing deals.
Align sales and marketing
It’s easier for a sales member to keep up with fresh leads and close deals when communication between the marketing and sales teams is open and frequent.
The two teams rely on each other to generate profit and work in tandem. In fact, 37% of a company’s pipeline is sourced by marketing, therefore miscommunication in this area could cost you as much as $1 trillion a year through lost sales.
This misalignment can be avoided by encouraging meetings between the marketing and sales teams where they can share prospect and KPI updates. In addition, it would be useful to host mutually important files on a shared drive or cloud storage to increase accessibility for all members. In this way, salespeople can stay up-to-date on the latest information even on their mobile devices when they are travelling to client meetings. With the current pipeline updates, salespeople will likely find closing deals much easier.
Your sales team should be provided with the right tools in order to stay on top of their work. While many aspects of a sales job role are active and communicative, it’s been reported that salespeople spend as much as 79% of their time doing administrative tasks, and they can’t close deals if they’re not engaging with prospects. Luckily, many new digital automation tools can be implemented to speed up processes, thus leaving your sales team with more time to sell and make that all-important closed-deal handshake.
Turn your sales team to thought leaders
At BMS Performance, we recruit stellar candidates to create your dream sales team and provide extensive sales training to turn them into expert thought leaders. With 25 years of sales recruitment experience and over 500 candidates interviewed weekly, we’re confident we can provide you with an amazing recruitment experience. Contact us to see how we can help you today.
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