When to Fire a Low-Performing Sales Rep
When sales are slowing down, the "ghost-pipeline" starts to build as sales reps stop closing out prospects that in ordinary times would be labeled dead. At this point the pressure is growing on the sales manager to get rid of non-performing salespeople.
The sales manager will often draw a line and say “Make the numbers this month or you will be fired.” Most often senior management will step in and say, “But Bob, we only have six reps. If you fire two of them we are in real trouble. We’d rather have a poor-performing rep over no rep.” Hence the ‘bad breath’ versus ‘no breath’ reference.
Why it Matters:
"...trying to keep a sales representative who is weak, unproductive and misleading delays your recovery. It takes 4-6 months for a new rep to be productive; you may as well face reality and pull the trigger and get on with it. Find a producer."
Unfortunately, this forestalls the inevitable and the rep who limps along costs the company more (by being on staff) than they