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The sales manager has the toughest job in the room. You have to take heat from both sides – caught in the middle, between the sales team you run and the upper level management you have to report to. You have to keep your sales team on track and keep them hitting their goals, but you’re also tasked with executing the company’s larger strategy and synthesizing data for the president. What if that data’s not good enough? What if you can’t get your sales team firing on all cylinders, no matter what you try?

Can your team get prospects to stop “thinking it over” and close a deal?

Do your salespeople let deals sit in the pipeline, rather than moving them from stage to stage? Do they accept it when prospects say that they want to shop around or think it over? Or do they press forward and close?

Are you building the right team?

Do you have trouble identifying the right pieces for your team’s puzzle? Do you have trouble telling the difference between good and bad hires until they sink or swim on the job? Do new hires take too long to get up to speed? Are you losing too many good people to your competitors?

Are your sales are going up but margins are flat, or dropping?

Are your salespeople bleeding profits even as they grow sales? Do they make too many concessions just to bring in a sale? Are they dealing with too many bad prospects? Is your sales focus on quantity of sales – or quality?

Is turnover on your sales team too high?

Do you hire salespeople only to end up cutting them loose after they flop? Do you routinely lose your best sellers to other opportunities? Are you constantly hiring, or looking for better options than you have available?

Is your team just slow?

Do opportunities end up stuck in the pipeline far longer than they should? Do your salespeople fail to push to close sales, preferring to wait for prospects to decide on their own? Do they fail to prospect altogether? Are their behaviors to the level they need to be?

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