Practicing Consistent Selling is More Important Post-COVID
In normal times, consistency is among the most critical traits of sales teams. However, in the new post-COVID-19 environment, being consistent has grown from being important to imperative.
What does it mean to be Consistent?
Consistency means measurability, ease of learning, and forming good habits. It’s creating repeatability, which leads to growth and success for the seller. Best practices cannot be created without consistency—so it’s essential to use this as the underlying foundation when building a successful sales team.
Best practices cannot be created without consistency. For example, think about a piston engine. It runs in cycles and always takes the same route. The oil lubricates on a piston engine allow it to repeat movements. When put together, the engine propels your car forward, thus, being consistent. Consistency does the same thing for your selling efforts as it does for a piston engine.
Consistency is a key contributor to a scalable selling machine. By being scalable, your sales team can acquire more customers to increase revenue consistently over time.
Growth Looks Different for Everyone but is Equally Important
Public companies must adapt to a “grow or die” mindset. This is because stock prices are based in large part on expectations of growth. With revenue growth and stock price increases, other companies can be acquired. However, when stock prices decrease, your company can be the one to get acquired and disappear into another entity.
For mid-to-large private companies, growth is the key to success for leading markets.
When companies are in leading markets, sales are easier and so is acquiring new customers–because they want to be affiliated with a company that wins.
Early-stage companies and start-up businesses are dependent on access to capital to expect growth and revenue. This means that staying relevant and not allowing the company to get run over by competitors is crucial. Growth leads to exit, whether by acquisition, merger, or IPO.
When teamed with a well-formulated selling machine, consistency is the key to success at all levels–every size company, all industries, and every executive leader.
Getting All Three: Selling Consistency, Repeatability, and Growth
How do companies adapt the big three: consistency, repeatability, and growth? The answer comes down to sales leadership. Companies who succeed understand the importance of steering their sales team in the right direction–providing guidance and mentorship to each team member and making sure they are equipped with the tools and techniques needed to be successful in meeting all sales targets.
According to Vantage Point, top-performing sales managers achieve 39% more of their targets than low-performing managers. This extra achievement means that the company can better execute its goals, and the employees themselves are more likely to reach their objectives. Often, the entire team, including leadership, becomes better compensated as a result.
Local Eleven, a research company, tells us that the top 25% of sales managers drive more consistent performance within their sales teams. They do this by implementing practices that drive revenue. However, they can’t do it if all if they rely solely on themselves and not on others. A successful leader understands the importance of investing in themselves and each member of their team to ensure that they are staying on top of best practices as a whole.
Companies that allocate more than 50% of overall sales training budget toward management training outperform their goal by 15%, according to Vantage Point and the Sales Management Association. CEOs who achieve high growth in customer base and revenue typically make sure their sales leaders have ample opportunities and budget to strengthen their own abilities, implement selling machines, and have an easier time passing down their knowledge where appropriate to their team members.
Focusing on a Complete Selling Machine
MMasters Corporation, in collaboration with their clients and partners, identified the essential parts of a selling machine that are likely to help sales teams reach goals consistently and be able to scale in terms of customers, revenue, and even in team size.
Referred to as a 360-degree selling machine, this concept provides a model that can be used across several industries to provide the framework to propel sales teams to the next level.
As you can see, consistency is a vital part of each component of the selling machine.
Parts of the Selling Machine
Strategy – this is the roadmap used to lead the sales team and, thus the company in the right direction. With a viable strategy, the company survives. With a superior strategy, the company thrives in competitive marketplaces, changing environments, and challenging surroundings. But a good plan is not enough. Think of it as the chassis of your vehicle or the essence of your being.
Process – puts bones on the skeleton that is the strategy. By defining how things work, you will be given the roadmap that you need to execute your strategy.
Operations – creates a methodology and infrastructure to execute the process and thus the strategy. It’s the engine in the vehicle or the muscles on the skeleton.
Skills – knowing what to do is important. But knowing when to do it creates a lasting impact. This requires breaking through some obstacles along the way. Skills are one of the most important, yet most neglected parts of the sales machine. It’s the operator’s brain, and the sharper it is, both in terms of operations and soft skills, the farther you will go.
Tools – you can start a fire without a match or a lighter, but it’s certainly not easy. The better the tools at your disposal and the better the fit for the job, the easier the job will be.
In an optimal selling organization, all five parts will be at maximum capacity and working efficiently. If any part is missing or less than optimal, the selling machine will suffer, consistency will disappear, and revenue will be challenging to attain.
The Solution for High Sales Team Achievement
Putting your sales team in a position of high achievement and consistency period-to-period can be achieved by ensuring that your selling machine is functioning well in all five areas. Your sales leaders should have the most up-to-date skills and tools to lead the team.
In the post-COVID economy, the rules are changing, and so are the ways customers behave. Some of these changes will last forever. If your selling machine is fully functional and your selling leaders are equipped with the latest tools, techniques, and concepts, you can react more quickly and effectively to those changes, and navigate your team to success, no matter what the changes bring.
About the Selling Machine Masterclass: Building a Scalable Selling Machine
If you’re ready to start building a scalable selling machine, consider joining us for the Selling Machine Masterclass. Created for executives responsible for growing sales and grooming for similar roles, attendees can expect to walk away with a custom sales blueprint effective immediately. Four key elements will be covered throughout separate modules of the masterclass. They include gap analysis, assessing the processes and skills of your team, tools, and sustainment.
What to Expect from Each Module
Building Your Sales Process
- Gap Analysis
- Selling Machine Foundations – creating a right-sized selling eco-system
- Sales Funnel stratification and management
Leading Your Sales Team to Ensure Team Adoption and Focus
- Skills Assessment & Skills Gap Analysis
- Periodic Meetings – how often, with whom, what they should include
Implementing & Customizing Tools to Enhance Sales Productivity
- The Tech Stack – Tools and how they go together efficiently
- Building and Implementing Prospecting Cadences
Sustainment and Fine-tuning
- Compensation strategies to keep incentives aligned, dealing with underperformers, keeping your talent pipeline full
- Miscellaneous topics in sustainment
MMasters created the Selling Machine Masterclass in conjunction with Catalyst Connection, Innovation Works, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse, and Founders Institute. The 2020 cohorts are presented by MMasters in partnership with Catalyst Connection in a fully digital format to allow participation worldwide.
Since 1990, MMasters has worked with organizations to help them create and effectively run their sales teams to enter new markets, launch new products, and fill the gaps that allow consistent, repeatable sales growth. www.MMasters.com
About Catalyst Connection
Catalyst Connection is southwestern Pennsylvania’s only economic development organization providing services, partnerships, and opportunities to everyone manufacturing touches across southwestern Pennsylvania. For more than 30 years, Catalyst Connection has powered manufacturing potential across all areas of life through collaborative expertise and long-standing strategic partnerships.
About the Authors
David Radin is President of MMasters Corporation and principal consultant. With over three decades running sales teams and growing companies, he has worked with large companies, including Verizon, Motorola, and Apple, as well as small companies in various stages. He helps companies achieve success with existing and new markets, products, and teams.
Shannon Gregg, PhD ABD is President of Cloud Adoption Solutions and principle consultant at MMasters Corporation. She has created and implemented sales operations in various companies and is frequently called upon by executives to help them in their sales tech stack and operations.
Take the Plunge into Successful Sales
Interested in signing up or learning more about the Mastersclass? Learn more here.
If a webinar is more your speed, we encourage you to register for Pinpointing & Bridging Your Gaps to Gain Revenue Traction in the New Normal. In this session, you’ll discover key areas, some hidden, that need to be re-analyzed to assess the actual gaps that exist between what you’re doing and what you must do next to survive.
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We welcome any and all questions and feedback. Get in touch with the Catalyst Connection team.