Keys to Winning Sales Teams

By Charles J. Curto, Managing Principal of Tech Coast Equity Group.

At a meeting of the Technology Council’s Entrepreneur Society, Brad Leggett, CEO of the sales performance consulting firm The Leggett Group, presented Keys to Winning Sales Teams. Below are some of the key take-aways from his presentation.

  • Brad advocates viewing the challenge of building and sustaining winning sales teams in terms of people, performance and processes.
  • Select your team members carefully with special emphasis on
    • Defining the 3 to 5 key results that must be delivered,
    • Specifying the activities needed to achieve those deliverables
    • Determining the skills and background needed to achieve the desired results, and
    • Being sure the person has the right attitude.
  • Keys to selecting new talent include
    • Recruiting is a process, not an event.
    • The recruiting rule of 3:
      • 3+ interviews
      • With 3+ team members
      • At 3 venues, a mix of work and non-work.
    • Focus on past results.
  • Implement a 90-day quick-start program to launch the new team member on the path to success including
    • Phased acquisition of key knowledge and skills with someone designated to impart each.
    • 90-day goals with weekly achievements spelled out.
    • Weekly review progress versus goals.
    • Cut if not making it.
  • The key to performance management is establishing responsibility by
    • Setting clear goals that are achievable, demanding, permit measuring and controlling results, and are collaborative while making clear who has responsibility for which deliverables.
    • Providing for support activities with their goals.
    • Providing weekly one-to-one feedback on progress versus goals.
  • Processes and systems that provide the infrastructure for achieving sales goals include
    • Sales tools, such as collateral, web site and turning tribal knowledge to answer the question “Why your company?”.
    • Rewards and recognition, including compensation, public praise and contests.
    • Team meetings which provide collaborative training as well as solutions to challenges.
    • A collaborative CRM that facilitates the sales person’s goal achievement and delivers progress metrics to the sales person and management.

This summary is not meant to be a transcript of the session nor a comprehensive primmer on developing a high performance sales team. Instead, its intent is briefly to share a few of the valuable take-aways from the session, take-aways which are based on the experience of successful entrepreneurs and professionals who work with entrepreneurs. Hopefully, these will encourage you to attend future Council programs where you can meet and learn from the experience and wisdom of other thought-leaders.

Brad Leggett can be reached at (949) 388-6910 and Brad@LeggettSales.com.

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Bottom Line Confidential – How to for Sales Growth: “A New Way to Increase Revenues”

By Bill Swanson, CEO Decisions

Revenue is down and so is profit. You listened to your customers, assessed the competitors, enlisted the brightest of your team, and sifted through the brains of the best external experts. You’re feeling good about your decision to signed-off on that five hundred thousand dollar Sales Improvement Program; you locked the door and made your way to the parking lot. It’s 6:30pm and you’re excited about a long holiday weekend with the family; a time to relax and renew. As you flip the steaks, cook the potatoes, and plan the weekend, the flames under the steaks bring to mind your hot new Sales plan. You begin to ponder… ponder if your market will alter their behavior and increase sales as promised by your team. Can we drive down the expense line using a new position in market strength? Will our up and down channels be convinced and ensure our new products will be supported by them? Will improving Field Sales capabilities and efficiencies do their share to increase revenues? Can marketing successfully define the improvement, and will the company become more profitable; or did I miss something…? The answer to these questions becomes personal. It’s my credibility with the Board, the Bank, and the sales force. Within the smoke of cooking beef lays two questions; questions that should have been asked at the beginning of the decision process: Was the decision making process fully correlated to the sales objective, and will the projects and programs produce recognizable value to the customer?

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