Posts Tagged ‘Sales Management’

The CRM Debate Goes On: Do We Really Need It?

Written by on . Posted in CRM, Sales & Technology

Over the years, we’ve worked with literally thousands of companies considering a CRM system. Big companies, small companies, in-between companies. Some bought ours, some bought someone else’s, and some did nothing. It is this last group that this paper addresses.

I recently polled an industry group of manufacturers who sold capital equipment and services to a narrow, B2B market segment. Their sales cycles are long, complex, and varied, the competition is stiff, and the repeat business substantial. A dream market for CRM. Over half of them have no CRM system, and no active plans to implement one.

One part of me says “great, more sales opportunities for me.” Another part says, “why not?”

The reasons I hear (and interpret):

  • “We don’t need it.”

This is usually accompanied by “Excel/ Outlook/ Quickbooks/ Other works just fine.” But you do need it. You think you don’t because business is going along as it always has, so why rock the boat? The answer is because your customers and competitors are already rocking the boat, and you’re gonna get swamped sooner or later.

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20 Reasons to Share Your Sales Process With Your ComputerReason No. 3 – Singing from the same page.

Written by on . Posted in Sales Methodology, Sales Process No Comments

The common way for sales teams to get automated is through a CRM system. Early adopters of CRM have managed to iron out the flaws and have settled down to life with CRM doing a pretty good job of assisting with customer experience—making it as good as you can.

Salespeople and sales managers use the CRM system. If the CRM is implemented correctly, they have to. Sales, however, is the last bastion to get into the CRM fold and sometimes only with kicking and screaming. There are reasons for that which are a fairly common topic in my posts. Let’s think a bit about what the sales manager wants out of computer involvement with his team and his processes.

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How to be Highly Effective in Sales Management

Written by on . Posted in General Sales Topics, Sales Management No Comments

Presentation

This article is dedicated to sales managers. We have discussed a lot about methods and tools that assist salespeople in their work, but how can we help managers? What is the important information they need to work effectively with the team?

Contrary to the conventional wisdom found in many companies, when it comes to sales productivity indicators, less is more. That is, just a few indicators are sufficient to evaluate the team’s performance. To manage sales requires focus, alertness and speed in decision making. There is not much time for extensive analysis.

All of us who work in sales know that, at the end of the day, what matters is whether or not we achieve our sales goals. This is the main indicator of sales performance.

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Sales Effectiveness and Sales Efficiency: A Thought Experiment

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When I write about selling I wince every time I have to use one of the two E words — ­Efficiency and Effectiveness. These occur so much in sales language that we’ve become complacent about their impact and meaning. All salespeople want to sell more — and they can creating more opportunities (Efficiency) or by winning more opportunities (Effectiveness).

I go overboard with the E words in my book, Sales Automation Done Right, (hey, that was written ten years ago, so no apologies). Then I used the simple example of the compounding effect of the building efficiency over effectiveness (E squared, if you are at all scientific.) You can find that discussion in the free e-book in our library. (Scroll down to the five SADR Extractions.)  I finished up that discussion with the proposition that “Effectiveness on top of efficiency produces dramatic increases in sales. It’s the same as compound interest in the bank account.” But something tells me that that discussion is just a little too abstract.

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Your CRM Solution – Great Dashboard and Poor Results

Written by on . Posted in General Sales Topics, Organization No Comments

Imagine someone is buying a car simply based on the quality of the dashboard instrumentation. The speedometer is more accurate than an average car, there is a wonderful navigation system that provides the driver with details of their journey, and a number of additional instruments displaying the engine condition. All of this is nicely presented with an attractive design and interface. Now this person takes out the new car for their first ride and it turns out that the car performs poorly. The acceleration is too low to keep up with the traffic. The fuel economy, combined with a small fuel tank, forces the driver to make frequent stops costing valuable time. The exclusive focus on the dashboard led to the purchase of a car with low performance superbly displayed on a fancy dashboard.

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The Business Apps That Shaped Our Organizations

Written by on . Posted in Sales & Technology, Software No Comments

Salespeople are the most avid users of business apps, and I think the “Holy Trinity” of business apps would be for Word Processing, Spreadsheets, and Presentations. I might just as well say, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint. Microsoft still dominates the market for Windows-based business applications software. It wasn’t always like that though. I’ve written about Microsoft stifling innovation in a previous article, and I was reminded about how widespread this has been when I did some research on cameras in phones.

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8 Sales Pain Points – Do You Have Sales Pain?

Written by on . Posted in ASPEC, In Practice No Comments

Any enterprise considering an opportunity management solution has, by definition, an opportunity management problem. Just as in medicine, triage is the first step in selecting an opportunity management app – where does it hurt?

It is a fair assumption that most companies today will have an established CRM program. For many sales organizations, the opportunity management capability of that program is inadequate, or even counter-productive, the victim of trying to do everything for everyone instead of focusing on doing the important thing for sales success. Here is a list of some of the customer pains caused by poor opportunity management modules, and the solution that ASPEC provides.

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The Real Reason Salespeople Fail To Sell

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Everyone has heard about meritocracy, a professional evaluation and compensation model based on achieved results, usually revenues. It has been successful model for years and it is used all over the world, moving companies and industries up in business. In most cases, meritocracy produces effective and positive results, however, in extreme cases, it has also caused negative side effects across sales teams.

In terms of managing people, I’ve read an article where experts say that in extreme cases of meritocracy, employees can experience increased stress. This stress will actually have the opposite effect of success, and will lower their drive to produce results, which will result in the failure to reach sales targets and goals. As business gets more competitive, maybe it’s time to think about the evolution of the means by which we obtain results through people. In particular – salespeople.

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Why CRM Fails: Inflation!

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The introduction of a customer relationship management system has the potential to highly improve the productivity of the sales and marketing teams through better access to information and streamlined processes. Nevertheless, according to various studies, between 50% and 70% of CRM system introductions fail to fulfill these expectations. This may partially be attributed to the systems themselves, but to a greater extent, the problem lies in the implementation process.

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Opportunity Management: Why We Built An App For Salesforce

Written by on . Posted in ASPEC, Product No Comments

This week we will be co-presenting at two sessions at Salesforce’s annual Dreamforce event in San Francisco. We’ve built a sales app on the AppExchange called ASPEC for Salesforce. Our development team has used the latest Canvas technology from Salesforce to integrate ASPEC’s graphic and gamification design features, to make sales automation fun and easy to use.

Our vision, here at SalesWays, is to make our ASPEC technology as widely available to as many salespeople as possible, whether solo users, small teams, or large enterprises. To make this happen we had to consider the different technology platforms that are currently used. As I write this today, ASPEC itself by our own definitions at SalesWays is not CRM—we prefer to call it sales automation (SFA). 

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