Are you serious about killing your sales performance? Well, if you’ve been Googling for books on how to kill your sales model, don’t bother. I conducted a quick online search to find out if a sales murder mystery has ever been written before. As you can imagine — it hasn’t.
However, what I did find was countless books written on how to improve sales performance. It seems like just about everybody knows how to do that. So I decided to take a less obvious path to help small business owners learn sure-fire ways to kill their sales team’s performance … mistakes that will cost time and money.
So, if you want to kill company sales, make sure to follow these ten tips:
Don’t make the deadly mistake of setting sales goals.
Never set specific measurable sales goals for anyone on your sales team. And if you’ve committed that crime, here’s the cover up. Don’t communicate it, or get buy in or put it down in writing! If your sales people insist, pull out a number out of thin air that sounds incredulous and tell them it’s a stretch goal, so you can keep them on their toes.
Always pretend you have the upper hand and know more.
You don’t need to get real and show your sales team how to win new business, strategize or give them cutting-edge tools. That’s just “book talk” from the millions of sales gurus out there. Your team will do way better and thank you if you just let them just sweat it out and reinvent the wheel. Set firm deadlines so no one can escape and let them know you’re in control.
Never get in the trenches with your sales team.
They’re grown-ups and can do without your supervision and pep talks. They’re looking for 3 specific things from you at weekly sales meetings: (a) an excruciating minute by minute account of sales activity; (b) the math on their conversion numbers; and (c) the number of no’s it’s going to take for them to master the art of accepting rejection.
Convince your sales team to harness the power of the human brain.
The best scientists in the world have proven that even the fastest computer cannot measure up to the immense potential of the human brain (and to think that we only use 10% of our brain’s hard drive). Let them keep all of the sales data in their head … that is plenty of space to keep track of pipelines, prospects, and clients for crying out loud! Why bog your team down with online CRM tools for that? For those salespeople who just can’t deal with instant data retrieval, ask them to create multiple spreadsheets and a paper piling system on their desks.
Keep the sales process a complete mystery.
Let your salespeople figure it out. After all, they have to earn their sales commission. You want a survivor on your team, someone who can jump through the hoops, read your mind, and stay on task. If the sales process were that simple, everybody would be doing it.
Ignore all that ‘hocus pocus’ sales teaching and technique.
Product training, sales training, checklists etc. to increase average dollar sale, seriously? It’s simply a trap; a setup to get your sales team to sell more? Who want’s to do that? Stay away from making that blunder.
Free your sales team from the shackles of estimates.
Let the creative juices flow. Let your salespeople figure out what it will take to get a customer to say, “Yes.” Let them go the extra mile: discounting, price wars, fee waiving, 360 day credit terms — whatever it takes!
Make sure your team has no clue that you’re thankful.
When your sales rep lands a new customer be sure to never acknowledge it — specially in a team meeting. Keep it simple; pretend it’s no big deal at all. Instead, constantly remind them of that stretch goal. They need to be thinking of the next big prospect; when and what it will take to land a new account.
Tell your team to play hard to get with customers.
Get your team on board with the idea of playing hard to get with customers. Discourage them from contacting customers they haven’t talked to in years or thanking repeat customers for their business. It’s a complete waste of time. You’ve already got them! Customers know who you are and will come back. Get the team in pursuit of brand new, shiny, hot sales leads.
So, what do I do next?
Congratulations, if you’re already implementing these you are silently killing your sales performance. If you haven’t done any of the above, pick two and apply them relentlessly in the coming weeks. Nothing happens without action, right?!
Yamini Virani is the founder Celebrus Business Strategies, a management consulting firm that helps small business owners build great businesses. To find out how well your business is positioned for growth and expansion, download her free ebook “The 10 Essential Pillars In Your Business Structure” at celebrusstrategies.com.
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