'Personalities' Disguised as Business Sales Professionals
As a small business owner or sales manager, you’ve no doubt interviewed those outgoing, larger-than-life “personalities” disguised as business sales professionals. The ones with great smiles; who crack funny jokes, while promising an “amazing” return on your investment, in them!
Many of these “personalities” tend to move from one company to the next, ever-looking for that perfect situation. You know, a situation where they can go unnoticed in the company’s chaos. Truth is, these types are looking for “easy street,” with great benefits normally reserved for top sales professionals.
Disguised Business Sales Professionals Exposed
After the honeymoon is over, however, management starts looking for answers as to why the “personality” is not living up to expectations. At that point, with little in the way of sales, the jokes become less funny. Fact is, when management finally realizes their “sales personality” has totally failed to deliver sales goals, it may be a year down the road.
As a result, hurt feelings abound, finger pointing ensues, and management sends the “personality” packing with little fanfare. All those big smiles and expectations, gone!
No worry, as a result of being “let-go” the “personality” simply put on their best suit of clothes, paints on another big smile and searches out the next disorganized (e.g. loosey-goosey) company.
Unfortunately, it’s not hard to find another company with poor sales systems for holding “personalities” and other business sales professionals accountable.
Real Business Sales Professionals Embrace Systems
Top Business Sales Professionals understand and embrace good sales systems; therefore, they don’t fear accountability. On the other hand, mere “personalities” avoid systems at all costs. Fact is, they fear strong sales-tracking systems because they know these type systems will expose their poor sales habits within a few weeks of their hiring.
Note: Real Sales Professionals will tell you, a company that embraces and demands quality through a Quality and Service Control system, makes them look good. More importantly, it makes their job easier!
What Are Control Systems for Salespeople?
Salesperson Daily Routine Checklist System
A Daily Routine Checklist allows management to view sales activities of salespeople, from opening to closing, onsite or off. As a result, management can view daily, the number of cold calls, prospect calls, client follow-ups and the number of quotes given, etc. With this type of system in place, management sees the at-a-glance, performance of good or bad habits. Therefore, management can intervene quickly, if needed.
Moreover, management can stop the bleeding of the company’s investment in “personalities,” long before a whole year goes by!
Consistent Sales Reports
When management demonstrates consistency with their systems, salespeople respond in kind.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software
In today's world, most business sales professionals use CRM (Customer Relationship Management) to track their prospects and clients activity. However, a major fear for business owners is — when a salesperson separates from the company — will the ownership of the departing salesperson’s clients and prospects information remain with the company?
Owner & Controller of Client’s & Prospect’s Information
By paying a salesperson’s salary or commission, the company has indeed paid good money to acquire client and prospect information. Therefore, I contend that the company owns all Client Accounts and all Prospect information.
Note: Unless salespeople have a book-of-business when hired, they should never take client accounts or prospect lists when leaving. That’s when systems walk out the door!
Sadly, many small businesses with poor sales systems, not only lose clients but all prospect information when a salesperson leaves for greener pastures. The simple fact is ownership and control of the CRM software is in the control of the salesperson. Bad policy!
For this reason, the company should own and administrate control of a CRM via permissions. Whereas, when a salesperson leaves the company, his or her access permission to the company-owned CRM is terminated.
Therefore, when a replacement salesperson is hired, they will hit the ground running with a current list of clients and prospects. And all contact information is ready to go in the company-owned CRM.
Folks, if it’s true that sales are the most important topic and priority to most business owners, shouldn’t all small businesses embrace good sales systems?
Note: A signed policy statement, negotiated upon hiring, concerning the use of a CRM. Stating upfront who owns the accounts and prospects information is a smart system!
Did I mention? Great systems work!
Philip Beyer, founder/president of Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.