Why the Best Sales Managers Encourage More “Selfies”
What Do Selfies Have to Do with Building a Great Sales Culture?
Everybody loves a good selfie, but how does that relate to sales? Well, hear me out. We take selfies to visually capture a moment, right? It’s essentially a record that we can easily file away and share with others. The appeal is obvious. And yet when sales managers encourage the same behavior in their sales reps — conducting real-time capture of critical client/prospect interactions — it’s often met with resistance. The fact is sales activities need seflies, too!
Not only is that kind of record keeping simply good practice, it can also play an instrumental role in shaping your sales organization’s culture by capturing key data and delivering quality content. Let’s look at how.
Guiding Your Sales Culture Through Capture & Content
In the first article of this “Sales Culture” series we defined sales culture as “the environment in which salespeople collectively develop the attitudes and habits that determine their sales results.” Guiding your culture requires real-time measurement of both sales results and the habits that lead them there.
Capturing those measurements enables you to create content for your sales team that improves their performance. This is true for two reasons:
- The data you capture can be converted into helpful performance insights: Providing your sales team with a live dashboard can show them where they stand against their targets, the condition of their pipeline, the rate at which new pipeline is being developed, and the sales and marketing activities that are generating that new pipeline. These insights give them the ability to forecast accurately and course-correct before it’s too late.
- The data you capture can help you identify what knowledge your sales team requires in order to win more business: I once had a client that was losing a lot of business to their competition who was undercutting their price. To solve the problem, my client was ready to invest a lot of money on negotiation training. I suggested we analyze their sales performance data before making that investment. This was only possible because they had done an excellent job capturing key activities throughout the sales cycle. Our analysis revealed that 80% of the deals lost in the negotiation stage did not effectively quantify the value of their solution in the needs assessment stage. At the same time, those sales reps who did effectively quantify value had a much higher win rate from the negotiation stage. With that new knowledge, instead of wasting money on negotiation training, we created an ROI calculator and trained the sales team on how to establish measurable value early in the sales cycle. Needless to say, their win rates drastically improved!
Help your sales team develop revenue-generating attitudes and habits by feeding them a regular diet of relevant, timely and insightful content.
6 Steps to Establish a Healthy Capture/Content Rhythm
- For each stage in your sales cycle identify three key activities that will get your prospect to the next stage.
- Configure your CRM system to capture and report on those activities.
- Dedicate one full day each month to analyzing that data, looking for trends that tie specific sales activities to sales results. Those are your high-impact sales activities.
- Create content and tools to make those high-impact sales activities as easy and natural as possible.
- Partner with your sales leaders to reinforce the use of those tools and content until those high-impact activities become high-impact habits.
- Rinse and repeat.
When you regularly capture the right sales activities and convert them into meaningful content, you can guide your sales culture through the continuous improvement journey. And your guidance will be credible because it will be based on tangible, measurable insights, not just gut feelings and qualitative observations.
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Photo by: Susanne Nilsson