This page contains information about the Basic Essentials of Sales Management
Much of the contentContentContent refers to a material or document released in various forms (such as text, image, audio, and video) and created to inform, engage or influence specific audiences. is taken from the ebook that you can download here, which is supplemented by other content such as videos, blog articles, and more. All of this content will help you to build a solid foundation for your sales management career.
On this page we cover the Basic Essentials of Sales Management role:
The first thing a sales managerSales ManagerSales Manager is an executive who leads a sales unit, team or department by setting goals and meeting targets, formulating plans and policies, designating tasks, and developing salespeople. needs to do is analyze how to make quotaQuotaQuota is a predefined benchmark indicating the amount of sales a selling unit such as a sales rep or a regional sales team should achieve within a given period, often used as a measure of success, performance and eligibility for commissions and other rewards.. This will include analyzing the sales processSales ProcessSales Process is a series of strategic steps or a set of activities aimed at driving sales growth through the alignment of personnel, market insight, methodologies, relevant business units, and technology., the sales team, and the key metricsMetricsMetrics are quantities that are measured and used to: such as closing ratios, opportunity and leadLeadLead refers to a prospect or potential customer (who can be an individual or organization) that exhibits interest in your service or product; or any additional information about such entity. ratios.
This is calculated by taking the number of opportunities closed/won in a given period divided by the number of opportunities available during that period and then multiplied by 100 to give it a percentage.
Example › 20 Closed OpportunitiesClosed OpportunitiesClosed Opportunities is a general term encompassing closed-won and closed-lost opportunities. ÷ 100 Opportunites = 0.02 x 100 = 20% Closing Ratio
The sales manager needs to discover the conversionConversionConversion is the process of turning a target consumer into a paying customer; or more generally, the point at which a user performs a specific action favorable to a marketer or a seller. ratio of leads to opportunities. For example, lead conversion ratio for the sales team is 1 in 10, to achieve 320 opportunities in the pipelinePipelineSales pipelineis a visual representation of the stage prospects are in the sales process., the sales team would need 3,200 leads— 960 leads per month.
Sales Managers need to develop very close working relationships with other departments, especially MarketingMarketingMarketing is the field, set of actions, or practice of making a product or service desirable to a target consumer segment, with the ultimate aim of effecting a purchase. who will be critical to lead flow and Support which will be critical to resolving and understanding any customerCustomerCustomer is an individual or an organization that purchases a product or signs up for a service offered by a business. issues.
The sales process should mirror the buyers’ patterns as closely as possible. Those patterns are going to change, too, over time. The sales CRM pipeline needs to be as dynamic as the environment through which it flows.
You need to be personally highly organized and self-disciplined – managing your time and where you place your focus is the starting point of management. If you can’t manage yourself, you can’t manage others.
You must understand what is important to whomever you report to and focus on delivering that. Make sure both you and your manager agree in writing what your goals are so there are no misunderstandings going forward.
This means whether it is external partners & vendors or members of other departments in the organizationOrganizationOrganization is a cohesive group of people working together and formally bound by a shared identity (e.g., one team, company, club, etc.) and a common purpose (e.g., business growth, athletic victory, etc.)., learning how to interact efficiently with each is critical.
If you have mastered the first 4, then managing those who report to becomes much easier because you have cleared any external obstacles and allowed them to concentrate on selling.
Key Management Principles
The E-book “Theory Made Real: Pipeline CRM Puts Principles Into Practice” provides you with a blueprint for how to apply these timeless principles that will help keep you on track.
Focus on Results
Contribution to the whole
Easy userUserUser means a person who uses or consumes a product or a service, usually a digital device or an online service. rights management
Administering Pipeliner rarely a full time job
Huge time and cost savings
At Pipeliner, we operate on principles instead of values. The difference between these two terms is significant. Values are dependent upon: culture, time, era, language, business sector, geographical location, and other factors. They are highly contextualized…
There certainly is no sales enablementSales EnablementSales Enablement is a strategic process that provides a company’s sales professionals with tools, technology, training and other resources that improve their performance at customer engagement and at generating value for all stakeholders in the sales process. “magic bullet”—you utilize it and bang! instant results! People today will jump on any train when they hear it will bring immediate positive painless change—even as they know there is no such thing. It’s like trying to win a gold medal without doing any training, even though you know that can never happen.
Nikolaus Kimla, CEO at Pipelinersales, Inc.
Virtues of Management
The freedom that today’s technology provides requires that a responsible operating system is built on some timeless virtues.
Moderation is key to management and in sales management, such as collect dataDataData is a set of quantitative and qualitative facts that can be used as reference or inputs for computations, analyses, descriptions, predictions, reasoning and planning. wisely – don’t overload your team with data requirements.
Fairness is characterized by being impartial and just – Treat all team members equally, be fair in how you reward, and model fairness.
Charity is about kindness and tolerance. It means setting your team members up for success or giving someone who is struggling, the chance to excel at a job better suited to them.
You must trust in those you lead so that they will trust you. You must make yourself worthy of their trust so that when times are hard they will come through for you.
Wisdom is intelligence used with judgment, such as who to hire, how to manage them both collectively and individually.
Fortitude is the mental or emotional strength that enables courage in the face of adversity, such as how to manage the expectations of senior management.
Hope creates belief such as coaching and working closely with each member of the sales team to show them how they can reach their quotas creates belief in themselves.
Keep your sales compensationCompensationCompensation is the total payment and benefits an employee receives for rendering work — covering basic salary, allowances, commissions, bonuses, health insurance, pension plans, paid leaves, stock options, and other benefits. and commissionCommissionCommission is the amount of money a sales professional earns for reaching a specific sales volume or for executing one or more business transactions. plans simple and easy to calculate. Incentivize overperformance by not capping commissions — this drives salespeople to redouble their efforts in the latter part of the year instead of taking their foot off the pedal.
Sales is really not a team sport. It’s not like soccer, hockey or football—it isn’t a group of people all cooperating to move to a single goal. People have tried to operate sales teams this way, but it never works. You’re never going to get a group of salespeople to agree to be paid a “team commission” or some such if the team reaches a goal.
But even so, a sales manager has to create a team spirit. And because a sales team is composed of such vastly different individuals, all self-motivated, it’s definitely a tricky business
In today’s sales environment, perception is everything. Your sales reps have reputations that rapidly spread online–good or bad. Guess what? As a sales manager, so do you! If you are perceived as a manager that helps, that reps can rely on, then you’ll be able to rely on your reps, too.
And they’ll be able to recommend you, as one of their customers would recommend them.
If you have salespeople who are great at opening doors and creating opportunities but not great at closing, then rather than try to improve their closing skills keep them focused on filling the early stages of the pipeline. Focus those salespeople who are good at developing and closing opportunities on the later stages.
Everyone will be happier and more successful as a result.
Sales is about effective results. So you need to measure those results.
How many (outbound) leads does a rep bring in? Of what quality?
How many inboundInboundInbound refers to interest (could be sales or marketing driven) that comes in – e.g. cold emails to you, submitted forms on your website, press inquiries, etc. leads does a rep convert?
What is the average length of time for a rep’s lead conversion?
What percentage of leads does a rep “heat up” and make ready for primetime sales?
What percentage of leads does a rep convert to opportunities?
What is the average length of time it takes a rep to bring an opportunity to a successful close?
What is a rep’s closing ratio—the percentage of opportunities closed?
How good is a rep at upsellingUpsellingUpselling is a selling technique where a seller introduces a more expensive, an upgrade, or add-on to a buyer to increase the average order value.? At cross-sellingCross-sellingCross-selling B2B is when a customer purchases a product and they are offered a second product at a discount or as a reward.?
Tom Landry, the legendary football coach, once remarked, “The secret to winning is constant, consistent management,” which is a perfect summation of what it takes not only to win Super Bowls but also to manage a winning sales team. The key for sales leaders lies in constantly focusing on those activities where they can provide clarity for salespeople, coach and improve their sales techniques, and add value to their opportunities and accounts, and doing all of this consistently within a predictable framework. To achieve this there are five fundamental management activities that effective sales leaders leverage to build and maintain successful, winning sales teams.
Focusing on the five fundamentals of effective sales management places control firmly back in the hands of the sales leader.
John Golden, CMSO Pipelinersales Inc.
Selecting the right sales technology & sales management tools will be a critical part of your success. There are many considerations so here is an ebook that will make this process so much easier.
What are the benefits for both salesperson & sales manager
How easy is it to learn & use?
Is it flexible enough to adapt to your business?
How fast can it be implemented?
Can you automate key processes?
For any company, selecting a CRM solutionSolutionSolution is a combination of ideas, strategies, processes, technologies and services that effectively helps an organization achieve its goals or hurdle its challenges. and sales management software for a company is a major undertaking. Gartner has just provided an in-depth guide for doing so entitled “Select the Best-Suited CRM Solution with Gartner’s Evaluation Model”.
Gartner’s guide is meant as a highly technical guide for an analyst, and we’ll be using it as a reference for this ebook. But a point I made recently is that many times the wrong people—often a combination of executive and IT personnel—make decisions for which CRM system a company should adopt.