Hiring the Right Salespeople
Training for Results
The Fundamentals of Organizing Your Sales Force to Maximize Results
Introduction to Effective Compensation Packages
The Basics of Sales Planning, Forecasting, and Expense Budgets
BEST PRACTICES FOR INCREASING
FROM A KEYNOTE
ADDRESS GIVEN BY BOB CALVIN
BEST PRACTICES FOR HIRING SALES PEOPLE IN 2010
Do your job descriptions and candidate profiles reflect not only tactical issues but strategic ones such as experience in long complex sales cycles and group decisions, or duties such as negotiations, targeting and pricing windows?
Do you ask sales people to review their job descriptions each year, add new duties, delete ones no longer appropriate, sign it and return it to you?
Do you simulate the sales process in the hiring process? For example inject rejection into the interview to see how the candidate reacts. For example have shorter interviews if the sales persons face time with a customer is short.
Do you do telephone interviews with all sales person candidates to see if they can sell over the phone, and if they close on having an in-person interview.
Do you check references with previous employers/bosses and customers? Do you ask the right questions such as did the candidate expand his/her business with you, did the candidate open new accounts, sell value, or can the candidate sell a long sales cycle?
Do you have the final candidate for a sales position travel with another of your sales people for a day?
Do you have sales candidates sell you their present product/service to evaluate their selling skills?
In summary get the right people on the bus, the wrong people off of the bus, and the right people in the right seats. Spend more time to hire and less time to fire.
BEST PRACTICES FOR COMPENSATING SALES PEOPLE IN 2010
Do you realize that compensation may not change sales people�s behavior, but only let them know what management feels is important? Appropriate compensation must be combined with good hiring and training to be most effective.
Do you re-evaluate sales person compensation each year because of changes in product mix, markets, competitors and customers?
Does the dollar level of sales person compensation reflect the complexity of the sale? Do sales people doing consultative or partnership selling make more than sales people doing transactional selling?
Does the mix between fixed and performance pay reflect the type of sales person you want to attract, the sales person's influence on the sale, and the specific action and results on the part of a sales person most important to the success of your firm?
If you want sales people to work together do you encourage this with group bonuses?
Are you compensating the sales support staff with performance pay to reward activities and results important to your company's success?
BEST PRACTICES FOR SALES FORCE SIZING AND DEPLOYMENT
Do territories reflect equal potential? Do you have an accurate method for measuring potential?
Do territories balance the sales person's workload against the sales person's call capacity?
Do you ask sales people to report to you monthly on their top 10 prospects, top 10 growth accounts and top 10 accounts in annual purchases?
Do you periodically ask sales people to keep track of their time as it relates to major activities such as face time with customers, travel time, phone time and administrative work?
Do you analysis each sales persons/territories contribution margin and take action based on this?
BEST PRACTICES FOR SALES FORECASTING AND SALES PLANNING
Do you ask sales people to forecast their own sales based on past and present sales trends, changes within your firm, and changes at customers, competitors and in the market place?
Do you ask sales people for a best, worst and most probable forecast?
Do you ask sales people for the critical risks and contingency plans in their sales forecast?
BEST PRACTICES FOR NON-MONETARY MOTIVATION IN 2010
Sales person of the month, quarter or year based on changing metrics so everyone has a chance to win at some point.
Thank you letters and calls from upper management to sales people to recognize major accomplishments.
Sales clubs and honor societies based on results, skills and years of service.
A career ladder of titles.
Ranking sales people based on their results compared to quota/forecast and making the rankings available to all the sales force.
Motivating high performers differently from average performers. Getting high performers involved with mentoring, leading sales meetings and interviewing candidates.
A career ladder of titles so sales people can move from one level to another without moving into management. With the title come larger accounts and some changes in fixed pay.
BEST PRACTICES FOR PERFORMANCE EVALUATIONS IN 2010
Evaluate not only results but the skills, knowledge, activities and personal characteristics that drive results.
Have sales people do self-evaluations.
Evaluate sales people quarterly so the evaluation is closer to the results, actions and activities.
Separate quarterly performance evaluations from compensation reviews to make the performance evaluations less emotional.
Do not give a total score on performance evaluations so that you and the sales person can concentrate more on goals and objectives for each activity, result, skill set, personal characteristic or knowledge area. Less emphasis on ratings and more emphasis on goals.
For more information on any of these topics please buy one of Bob Calvin's books which include: "Sales Management, The McGraw-Hill Executive MBA Series" and "Sales Management Demystified" both published by McGraw-Hill.