CEO Advisor Newsletter March 2014
Achieving Sales Growth in 2014
A primary goal of every company should be to increase sales and to grow at or above your industry's growth rate. This will result in both increased profit and value in your business.
Here are five key factors and best practices in sales for achieving sales growth in 2014:
Set Goals to Increase Your SalesMost CEOs insist on sales goals in numbers of deals and dollars, but few hold salespeople accountable for 1) Dials and live contacts per day, 2) Sales appointments per week and month, 3) Opportunities created in your CRM software per week and month, as well as, 4) Sales in dollars per month, quarter and year and other critical sales metrics. Put your sales goals in writing and review them with your sales team monthly. Consistently conduct weekly sales meetings and make your sales goals a healthy competition tied directly to sales compensation. By creating urgency and clearly articulating all of your sales goals, your sales productivity will increase and sales cycles will be reduced resulting in higher sales and met sales goals.
Effective Sales Compensation PlanIncentivizing your salespeople properly with the right balance of base salary or draw, commissions and bonuses to create added urgency is key to a hungry, productive sales team. Provide the right training, leadership, recognition for achieving goals coupled with the right sales compensation plan, and your sales activity, opportunities and closed deals will multiply.
Hire ClosersHiring the right salespeople who are hunters, self-motivated, hungry, trainable, professional and most of all closers is critical to your company's success. You will meet your sales goals with a strong sales strategy and sales team that is focused on closing sales timely. Deal killers rarely close and insist on addressing every want and need of the prospects until their deals eventually die out. Hire effectively and achieve your sales growth targets. CEO Advisor has a 10-step process to hire salespeople that generates a high return on your investment. Gaining specialized expertise in the hiring of salespeople is critical to your success.
Get Involved to Generate ResultsMotivating your sales team can be your secret sauce. Leadership is a powerful motivator to your sales team. Get involved by attending a discovery sales meeting and a proposal presentation/closing meeting with each salesperson this quarter. Visit your three largest customers this quarter and bring your newest salesperson along to demonstrate the ability to generate new sales opportunities. Sales management and leadership instills loyalty and hard work, and ensures that your sales team is running optimally to achieve your goals.
Provide One-to-One or Sales Team TrainingEngage with a professional business advisor to assess your sales strategy and sales process and implement best practices with you and your salespeople. Have the advisor review and document the sales process, evaluate the prospects and sales pipeline in your CRM, review your sales goals, compensation plan, lead generation, reseller channels, sales management, sales meetings and sales productivity. This will generate a tremendous return on your investment - more than most anything you can do at your own company - and then implement sales training for the sales team to refine and improve their sales techniques, productivity, focus, closing ratio and results.
CEO Advisor, Inc. provides sales consulting and training that can forever improve the results of your sales team, positively impacting sales, margins and profits for you and your company. Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, CEO of CEO Advisor, Inc. today for a free consultation at (949) 629-2520, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.
Critical Skills for the CEO/Owner
- The Wharton Business School newsletter, published by The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania did a recent poll of executives and business owners. The results below show the four most important skills that would strengthen a CEO's performance.
- Strengthening what skill would most improve your performance?
- Leadership - 33%
- Time Management - 28%
- Negotiating - 22%
- Understanding Your Financials - 17%
- 1. Leadership
- Leadership and execution is the key to success and achieving your goals. Leadership requires planning, organization, being proactive, having a crystal clear understanding of the business both financially (quantitatively) and operationally (qualitatively), hiring and managing people of multiple generations and cultures, and creating a culture of accountability to grow your business to the next level.
- 2. Time Management
- Time management is the Achilles heel of most CEOs and small business owners. Not just managing time on a calendar and working 60 hours a week to keep up, but real strategy and planning to focus and structure your time to impact your business in a disciplined manner. CEO Advisor, Inc. works with its CEOs and small business owner clients to set goals and priorities, and truly excel in both leadership and time management.
- 3. Negotiating to Success
- Negotiating is the Holy Grail in business - with customers, prospects, vendors, employees, etc. We focus deeply on negotiations using some of the top techniques used by military leaders and business people. Your sales team can benefit tremendously from sales training and negotiating skills training from securing the initial meeting to negotiating price effectively to closing large deals. Strengthening your negotiating skills can yield a 100X return on your investment. If you are not a master negotiator and salesperson, invest in your negotiating skills and prosper in 2014 and beyond.
- 4. Understanding Your Financials
- If there is one New Year's resolution that every CEO and small business owner should commit to is gaining a thorough understanding of the financials of your business. If you don't, you are flying blind! This includes your Profit & Loss Statement (Accrual and Cash basis), Balance Sheet, Financial Ratios, creating a 2014 Financial Forecast, and learning to analyze and understand how to positively impact your Gross Margins and Net Profit, as well as, pinpointing early signs of problems. CEO Advisor Inc. spends the time to ensure every client not only understands but uses their company's financials in growing their business to the next level.
- Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, CEO of CEO Advisor, Inc. today at (949) 629-2520 for a no cost initial consultation, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit us at www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.