Sales Quotas Feed

When to Fire a Low-Performing Sales Rep

Businessman--Fresh-Breath-000020279415_LargeWhen 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."

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Unfortunately, this forestalls the inevitable and the rep who limps along costs the company more (by being on staff) than they

are selling.  I had a situation once where the rep cost us $6K a month all in, but was only selling $5K.  Management continued to say, “But we wouldn’t even have that $5K if she were gone.”  My response was that we’d lower our sales expense and still make the sale without her.   We finally fired her and used the money on promotions to strengthen lead generating efforts for the remaining reps.  The remaining reps took over her pipeline, which as it often turns out, was worthless.  

In the end there were more leads to go around and the remaining sales representatives appear to work more diligently.  As Samuel Johnson said, “Depend upon it, Sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.”

Solution:

When you confirm that a sales rep draws down on your precious resources, thereby not giving you a return on your investment in them, you have to give them an opportunity in another company.  Sales reps must know they are held to productivity standards. As their productivity fails, they must be coached and warned and helped and then let go.  Delaying the inevitable, 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.  

Related

This subject appeared in the ebook: "How to Tell if Your Pipeline is Failing You: A CEO's Guide"   Click here for access to the complete guide at the Sales Lead Management Association.     In this guide for CEO’s that are trying to understand the conflicting stories from their salespeople and the one document that indicates the health of their company, the author takes the reader on a journey of what is really happening when sales are dropping and the forecast from the pipeline appears unreliable. 

 


Top 5 Treatments for Sales Fungus

Women Hand EyeSales Fungus, identified as a disease state in March of 2019[i], affects salespeople and sales managers.  It hampers sales performance (quota failure), leading to job losses and hundreds of millions of dollars in lost sales opportunities.

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When Presidents Set Unrealistic Quotas

IStock-527444717Truth be known, most quotas are set by the company president, CFO or sales manager sitting in a room, deciding on what revenue growth they want and backing into the numbers. 

It seldom has anything to do with what's possible, how marketing can help, a sales or marketing plan or whether they should hire new sales reps to bring in the increased volume.   It's pure wishful thinking based on nothing more than they want it to happen. 

The consequences are devastating.

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January: the Most Important Month of the Year

IStock-188078193If you start the year slow and sloppy, you’ll be chasing your forecast all year. 

Failure to make the first month of a new year (whether that’s January or your fiscal year starting month) means the first quarter is at high risk.  Fail to make Q1 and Q2 is at a greater risk.  Fail to make the half and you may as well start looking for a job because you’re on track to lose the year. 

Making the January forecast gives you a better-than-even chance for making the Q1 forecast because momentum is in your favor. No, January isn’t the time to rest, have a national sales meeting, or take a long-deserved vacation. It’s the time to make your numbers and have some chance of making the year.  

With momentum from a successful Q1 in your favor, Q2 becomes easier and doubly as important before the summer slump takes hold.   

Why it Matters

“January isn’t the time to rest, have a national sales meeting, or take a long-deserved vacation. It’s the time to make your numbers and have some chance of making the year. “

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Funnel Radio Line-up Nov 1

Tweet-todays-funnelradio-lineup-20181101

Starting at 9am Pacific: Partick Morriessy welcomes John Kresia, VP Marketing at Hortonworks to talk about innovation and owning your category. Darryl Praill joins Rhoan Morgan on Revenue Rebels to cover the 4 steps to accelerating company growth. On Sales Enablement Radio, host, Ralph Grimse and his guest, Chris Day discuss crushing yoru quota using situational awareness. Matt Heinz topic is:Sales Objection Handling from the Master: Insights from Best Seller Jeb Blount. John Asher's guest is Brian Beveridge - Aligning Sales and Marketing Strategy and Execution to Optimize Growth. Amy Franko launched her book 10/30 - The Modern Seller. It opened to the Number 1 spot on Amazon for new books in the business category. She and Susan Finch cover what it means to be a Modern Seller on Rooted in Revenue.


20181101-tweet-altify-kreisa9am Pacific: Predictable Revenue Radio with host, Patrick Morrisey by Altify @PatMorrissey

Guest: John Kreisa, VP Marketing at Hortonworks @marked_man
Topic: Going from Technology Innovation to Owning a Category

 https://goo.gl/FmND48

Live Nov 1 from Dublin, Ireland and San Jose, CA: How do you go from innovative new technology to building and owning a category? That’s the question will dig into with John Kreisa, VP Marketing at Hortonworks – one of the fastest growing tech companies in history. We’re going to talk about the ins and out, challenges and difficulties of creating and scaling a category


20181101-tweet-rr-morgan-praill10:30 am - Revenue Rebels by DemandLab with host, Rhoan Morgan @demandlab

Guest: Darryl Praill, VP Marketing, VanillaSoft @ohpinion8ed @vanillasoft
Topic: 4 Steps to Accelerating Company Growth

https://goo.gl/RC68pA

Revenue Rebels spotlights rule-breaking marketing and sales leaders who are accelerating business growth with a fanatically customer-centric approach and this month we’re featuring Darryl Praill, Chief Marketing Officer at VanillaSoft.

Since joining the VanillaSoft team a year ago, Darryl has transformed the sales and marketing process and increased lead flow by launching an inbound marketing strategy and an aggressive digital marketing program supported by a strong sales and marketing stack. If you’re a marketing leader ready to elevate your company, tune in to this episode to hear Darryl’s 4-step approach to accomplish this and more.


 

Brevet-tweet-grimse-day11:00 am - Sales Enablement Radio by the Brevet Group with host, Ralph Grimse @thebrevetgroup

Guest: Chris Day @christopherlday
Topic: Crushing Your Quota Using Situational Awareness

https://goo.gl/sjTcmo

Our conversation is with Chris Day, inside sales leader at Bazaarvoice. We explore how to using situational awareness and pattern matching helps ramp new sellers faster and improves sales coaching and enablement. His team is crushing it, check it out!


Tweets-instream-images-800x600-blount11:30 am - Sales Pipeline Radio with host, Matt Heinz @heinzmarketing

Guest: Jeb Blout @SalesGravy
Topic: Sales Objection Handling from the Master: Insights from Best Seller Jeb Blount

 https://salesleadmgmtassn.com/adClick.cfm?id=542


20181101-asher-Brian-Beveridge12:00 pm - Asher Sales Sense by Asher Sales Strategy with host, John Asher @asherstrategies

Guest: Brian Beveridge
Topic: Aligning Sales and Marketing Strategy and Execution to Optimize Growth


https://goo.gl/rN6UkR

 One of the most difficult and enduring challenges business leaders face is misalignment of sales and marketing. And Brian Beveridge knows how to fix this. Even if you have winning talent and winning solutions, if you can’t get your sales and marketing strategy and execution working seamlessly you’re missing out on money.  While these challenges vary some between Enterprise and SMB markets, there are key steps business leaders can take to make substantial impact toward revenue growth. With decades of experience in this arena, Brian has key recommendations for how you can have immediate results to boost sales and crush your competition. Tune in to “Asher Sales Sense” November 1 at 3PM Eastern on asherstrategiesradio.com to hear John Asher talk with Brian Beveridge of Beveridge Consulting about “Aligning Sales and Marketing Strategy and Execution to Optimize Growth.


Tweet-rooted-modern-seller12:30 pm - Rooted in Revenue with host, Susan Finch @susanfinchweb

Guest: Amy Franko, Author, Speaker
Topic: The Modern Seller and Why You Need to Become One. 

https://goo.gl/jSsJ3b

Today's guest is Amy Franko, author of The Modern Seller. (available on Kindle or hardcopy). Some of the points we cover in this interview include big points taken directly from her book. 


Save the Quarter (and maybe the year) with this Proven Tactic

Sales UpswingCompanies entering their fourth quarter in a sales crisis mode can solve revenue and profit shortfalls by mining sales inquiries generated in the previous 12 months. If there is no database of these prospects, the company gets what it deserves.

Fortunately, most companies have a list of inquirers and leads, regardless of their qualification level. And most companies can sort their lead list into a group worth calling.

First Decision: whom to call?

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From the Sales Grunt: Unrealistic Quotas are a Performance Killer

IStock-471423505The first sign of unrealistic quotas occurs when top salespeople who made past quotas struggle.  Within a few months, these reps’ quota performance starts to dip below 70%, and heads south.  When questioned, the salespeople say the quotas are too high, among other things, but management dismisses this as typical sales grunt grumbling.

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