Sales is not an easy profession. It requires training, diligence, patience and above all accountability. All these requirements culminate in a seasoned professional sales person. A sales department may have a handful of these seasoned professionals and some that are learning and some that are brand new. Many times the missing element to a successful sales department is a process and a structure.
I have been working with many sales departments that basically allow the sales people to do whatever they want and there is no accountability for time and process and laziness is ubiquitous. Eventually the sales person becomes fat dumb and happy meeting the status quo and there is no longer a drive or any ambition. They essentially become clipboard order takers – not good.
A company needs a hungry and ambitious sales force in order to grow and stand with or ahead of the competition. This is done with incentive programs, aggressive commission structures, contests and competitive processes. Do you have a sales board in your sales department? Do you have quotas set for the day, week and month? Are there contests sprinkled in from time to time, are you honest about the overall sales numbers? Is there accountability to the quotas with performance reviews, rewards and even discipline if necessary. Are you constantly monitoring production and sales pitches? Are there training programs in place to help educate your sales people about the product, value statements, features, advantages, benefits? Have you trained and educated your sales people on the products and companies they are selling against?
There are many elements of en effective sales department and creating all these elements into a process and then wrapping that process into an exciting and energetic program can help increase sales, commitment, loyalty and moral.