Your sales numbers--do you know them? Let's start with that. Many small business owners I speak with don't have a revenue target at all, and so have no idea how they'd get there.
In larger companies we usually have a more "hired gun" sales management style. They are focused on sales quotas. Meeting the quota every quarter is the focus.
Having a target is good. But, as Partners In EXCELLENCE president David Brock points out, focusing entirely on monthly, quarterly and annual quotas alone is a bad idea.
Why Quotas Alone Bad for Managing Your Sales Numbers
Why? Because quotas are a lagging measure. They're driving by looking in your rear view mirror.
If, as Brock shares, you have a 90 day sales cycle, it is going to take a very long time to:
- find what the problem in your sales process is
- make adjustments
- see the results of those adjustments.
What we want instead is a leading measure. Leading metrics allow you to make changes in time to see results in your major lagging measures.
What Are Some Leading Measures to Track Your Sales Numbers?
What are we doing today, this week, this month? And how do those activities tie in to our larger business measures? Dials and customer meetings, for instance, are leading measures. We can make changes to them today.
However, as David Brock tells us, we can't just increase the number of dials and expect good results if our techniques are lousy. Having more bad conversations with prospects is not going to help.
Brock suggests we can track strategic initiatives and organizational performance numbers.
Strategic initiatives include customer retention, new customer acquisition, product mix, win/loss, and channel performance.
Organizational performance numbers include Reps making Quota, Cost Per Order Dollar (CPOD), and expenses.
Start with individual performance tracking, and then build up to your organization-wide numbers. You don't need a supercomputer to figure these out: Excel will do just fine. Then you'll understand your sales numbers, and be able to do something about them.
Read David Brock's article. It's well worth your time. And I highly recommend subscribing to his blog. He's put out three really great entries in the past couple weeks.
>> Jason Kanigan is a sales force developer. Did you find this info helpful? Please Like, Share or Comment to let others know! <<