5 Ways to Increase Salespeople’s Productivity

Undoubtedly, there is tremendous pressure wearing down on most sales organizations these days, as the ill economy and shrinking margins make it harder to meet their quota. Amid all this, increasing the organization’s sales productivity is always the main topic of concern.

Because among all the companies, there is one universal truth – no matter how great your project or service is, your business will inevitably fail if you have an inefficient sales productivity.

First and foremost, it is important to know that sales productivity cannot be increased unless you work on your customer service.

Here are the top 5 ways salespeople can use to improve their sales productivity strategy and enable their sales teams to sell smarter and faster.

1. Map the customer acquisition process

The fundamental problem with the “process” is that the purpose is to eliminate variance. Yet, in sales, the value lies in the variance. Selling is a highly dynamic, open-loop system. The more complex your offering, the greater the variance and complexity that must be managed.

While creating a repeatable process when the process is different every time may seem like an insurmountable problem, in reality, it’s not. The key is to view the process through an “object-lens.”

Don’t build out your methodology from A to Z; instead, map the system and find the waypoints. Mapping the system in this manner enables you to find those key inflection points where adjustments occur.

This enables you to make your repeatable process a series of repeatable mini-processes that can be plugged in as needed. If you’d like to be inspired by seeing this approach in action, just watch how a football team executes their playbook in football or how a hitter adjusts to the pitch and situation in baseball.

2. Create a clearly defined service-level agreement (SLA)

Great selling organizations have crystal-clear service-level agreements that define what every lead definition means, the processes and protocols for managing those leads, and what’s expected from every aspect of the revenue generation team(s).

A strong SLA enables everyone — especially salespeople — to spend their “thinking time” focused on selling situations, rather than figuring out what to do and when to do it. This creates greater discipline and velocity.

3. Stop focusing on efficiency

CRM, video, chat, email tracking, document sharing; today’s sales reps need a scorecard to keep track of the technology they’re supposed to use. Add marketing automation, lead scoring, forecasting, and more and you begin to realize that it’s a near miracle rep are able to spend even a third of their time selling.

While this technology, content, and strategy are designed to enable reps to “sell smarter,” it also creates multiple systems, too many databases, and mass confusion. Reps are forced to spend too much time simply figuring out where to go for what they need, and executives are unable to get a single view of the entire process.

This results in a focus on efficiency. The problem is we’re trying to maximize each disparate system’s efficiency, which makes things less efficient and usually slower.

Your goal should not be to focus on efficiency, but instead to focus on velocity. To do that, you must have a single system of the truth. It’s fine for reps to use multiple apps, but it must all connect into a single system and a “database of truth.”

4. Design and execute contextual plays

Playbooks are powerful. If you don’t have a defined and documented playbook, you’re competing at a disadvantage, and predictability and scale are highly unlikely. However, if your sales reps have to think about or refer to the playbook, your playbook isn’t going to work.

The Aberdeen Groups’ research (cited above) highlighted the drag manual processes are placing on sales and revenue velocity. Reps shouldn’t have to think about the playbook. The playbook should be integrated and automated within the existing systems.

Sales reps are the quarterback of the customer acquisition process. The key to maximizing the productivity (and economic impact) of this crucial role is to create, execute, and optimize the processes that enable them to dedicate their energy and focus on the high-value actions that cause sales.

5. Integrate and automate your playbook

Playbooks are powerful. If you don’t have a defined and documented playbook, you’re competing at a disadvantage, and predictability and scale are highly unlikely. However, if your sales reps have to think about or refer to the playbook, your playbook isn’t going to work.

The Aberdeen Groups’ research (cited above) highlighted the drag manual processes are placing on sales and revenue velocity. Reps shouldn’t have to think about the playbook. The playbook should be integrated and automated within the existing systems.

Sales reps are the quarterback of the customer acquisition process. The key to maximizing the productivity (and economic impact) of this crucial role is to create, execute, and optimize the processes that enable them to dedicate their energy and focus on the high-value actions that cause sales.

Get in the driver’s seat and see for yourself what PeaksLead can do without having to sign up for an account.

Source: Doug Davidoff

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