We consider it normal, yes even necessary that sports professionals plan and prepare for their next event. But surprisingly, many sales professionals do not apply the same standard to their own profession.
Why is that and what can you do as a leader to motivate and support world class visit planning and preparation?
As a sales leader you can allow them time to prepare (i.e. the Friday afternoon for administration and planning) and provide them with adequate sales processes and/or tools (have a look at this Plan On A Page POAP)
Lack of Awareness
Help them understand how thorough preparation can enhance their effectiveness, build credibility with customers, and improve their chances of success. Use a sports analogy and examples from your own experience. Check their planning and preparation efforts regularly.
Overconfidence or Complacency
Successful and experienced salespeople rely on their experience, knowledge and relationships. Apart from using the sports analogy, convince them that markets and circumstances can always change. That their competitor never sleeps and that excellent selling means excellent planning and preparation.
Lack of Training or Guidance
Train them to be aware of the best practices, tools and techniques that can support their planning efforts. Contact us for a free and non-binding consultation call with tips and guidelines.
Lack of Accountability
Emphasize and track the quality of planning efforts. Create a culture that values thorough preparation and integrate it as a standard practice in the sales approach. Demonstrate how the CRM system helps to be more successful.
External Factors or Distractors
Urgent customer requests, unexpected events or shifting priorities can limit the salesperson’s ability to dedicate sufficient time and focus to the process. A good sales leader is aware of this and helps the sales person prioritising his/her agenda, and provides time and resources to accomplish all tasks at hand
Many sales leaders hesitate to provide their team with time and resources for planning and preparation as it will be detrimental to the total number of customer visits.
But remember that the quality of the visits will increase (and due to more efficiency the quantity too), sales confidence will increase and eventually lead to more sales, better revenues and margins.