7 Necessary Steps to Constructing a Successful Sales Team
It is commonly known information that most businesses need a powerful sales force in order to be successful in today’s world. Development, targeted marketing, products and services are all staples in the productive growth of any business. However, the success of your sales team will determine how much profit you generate for your company. Your team should be the best you can possibly make it, no exceptions.
You may be wondering how to build a successful sales team in order to achieve your sales goals. Get ready for a wild ride, because creating a good sales team is no easy task to complete. So long as you follow the necessary steps, you will have a highly successful and well performing sales team in your midst.
- Classify Your Sales Situation
Powerful doctors do not write prescriptions without first diagnosing a patient. If you are following this sales model, then you should treat your sales team as a patient. Do you already possess the right resources to have a good sales team? You might already be working with a set of highly-skilled salespeople that just need more training in order to work in the right direction.
As another option, your team could be taking a disadvantage from demand. Your team might not be able to handle the amount of requests coming their way, and you need to recruit a few more people in order to give the whole team a nudge in the right direction.
Of course, you could also be beginning from the ground up, meaning you have a completely empty plate. However, having the knowledge on how to construct a sales team from the ground up means that you know how to attract successful salespersons.
- Know Who You Need and What You Need Done
You have already surveyed your sales environment. You possess the knowledge of what you have, as well as what you are lacking and need to have. To properly assess the next steps that you need to take, determine the end goal of your sales team. Is it a customer service team? Or a team of cold-callers? How is the team built, and who are its strong and weak points? Constructing accurate, performance-oriented job titles is crucial to building a team up.
Even if you are trying to enhance the employees that you already have, take another look at the roles of each person. They might perform more efficiently in roles with differing expectations. Do not be scared to test out different positions until you find the one that works for you.
- Track Progress and Success
In order to construct a winning sales team, you have to be clear about what is needed to get ahead in the industry. But, you also need to understand how to judge progress and success in contrast to where you began.
Success with a sales team is judged on both behavior and results. Keeping focus on only activity in the present is not the suitable for judging the long-term success of a sales team. It can actually be damaging to a team to only focus on their results in the present, especially if there happens to be a time when your sales aren’t doing as well.
Examples for measuring sales performance measurements:
- Ratio of the cost to the revenue that will be gained from sales. Pure volume of sales is not the end all in every company. Whether you sell smaller products or services doesn’t matter as much as the actual revenue that you are making after all expenses.
- Conversion costs: is your team doing well with closing deals? How is the process for closing deals?
- Forecasting versus actual sales: salespeople who always perform at or above the forecasted marks know their clients, markets, and how to succeed.
Examples for sales activity measurement and Sales Team Motivation:
- Funnel Health: The number one categorical measurement for sales is the health of your sales funnel. It’s future facing and focused on the path to results. Take record of the status and quality of all the potential prospects that you have, as well as what caused each of them to come your way. This way, when you find a time that your team is performing in a certain way, you can assess the conditions surrounding the circumstances and make changes to your procedure as necessary.
- Total number of new accounts contacted: at the highest level, new contacts will open doors. Taking a calculation of the total amount of new clients that your team gets will reveal the overall desire of your team to close sales.
- The number of contacts made in differing areas: Making a measure of contacts by the market segment allows you to keep track of whether or not your team is performing up to par.
- Create a Tried-and-True Hiring Process
We have talked about how important it is to have a solid hiring process, but it is worth it to repeat. Ensure that you have filtering procedures in place to identify solid candidates in general, but also to aim your interviews to finding candidates that will fit the position you are trying to fill.
Hiring is a very time-consuming process. In order to build the best sales team, however, you need to look at the numbers. There is plenty of ways to find new prospects.
- Recruiting events: these allow you to benefit from because they place huge numbers of well-qualified candidates at your disposal for a relatively low cost and effort on your part. People who attend these career events are often in search of a job rather quickly, so this will make them easier to hire. But keep in mind, there are also a lot of other companies for people to choose from, so you must do things to make your business stand out from the rest.
- Referrals: Whether they are coming from people you currently employ, friends, business partners, or referral agencies, referrals are important for finding well-qualified candidates.
- Advertising: Placing ads around the internet and in physical places is good for speech and reading.
- Outsourcing: When you are utilizing the sources of an external recruiter, it is important to qualify recruiting firms that are the proper fit for your organization. Firms that are not a good fit will likely create candidates that are also not a good fit.
As you may know, there are different approaches to hiring people. No matter the way in which you decide to pursue candidates, you should cast a wide net in order to make sure you get the proper candidates in the position.
- Maintain a Cash Flow
Money is not the most important thing for everyone. More often than not, though, dedicated salespeople have ONLY money on their minds. Money is always an important part of the goals of every sales team, and obviously the most important part of any for-profit company or organization. Even if the people on your team are not primarily money-driven, money is at the forefront of their position, and they will need to be comfortable handling money, as well as asking for it. Offer base pay to a sales team that is not focused on money. Or, try different methods of paying commission in order to drive them to sell more without making it seem like it’s all about the money.
- Introduce with Care
If you are creating a new sales team or creating new brands, then you will need a good onboarding process. Take some time to push new hires to see your own sales goals before they begin the job. Be transparent with what you want and expect so there is no confusion on what needs to be done. Create expectations that are clear. Encourage the stronger members of your sales team to treat the product, and company, as if it is their own.
- Hit All the Top Training Marks
How intense do you want your training program to be? If you desire for your sales team to come out victorious and make the most profit, then you need to put everyone through intense sales training. This means your new hires, current employees, and yourself. This will teach your sales team how to win. Once you have shown your team how to be successful, they will have less trouble getting there on their own.
Good quality sales training programs will focus on skills training. These courses take learning and turn it in to a more real-life situation. More often than not, training programs will focus on what seems to be the best methods of teaching, not what will actually work in the real world.
Of course, the most effective sales training courses reinforce every step of the process, kind of like assigning homework after class. In order to keep your team winning, implement ways in which you will maintain what is being told to your employees.
When it comes to building a winning sales team, there is no easy way. It will take time, training, resources, and money. More than this, it will take a passionate team leader with a trained hand. With this being covered, rewards of a strong sales team will be the success and profitability of your company, and there is no better reward.