We’re all salespeople, at least to some extent. Every negotiation we enter into, both personally and professionally, requires us to convince other people and convert them to our side of thinking. Some are better at selling than others. While we often hear that good salespeople are born, not made, it’s just not true. Selling is mostly a science, not an art. A solid sales process provides the science for anyone to become a top performer.
Successful sales organizations live by their sales process. A best in class sales process is:
- Well defined
- Clearly communicated
- Broadly adopted
- Reinforced through specific activities & tools
- Measureable & trainable
- Constantly improved upon
- Aligned with the customer’s buying process
- Reinforced through coaching by 1st line sales managers
A well thought-out sales process will help you implement a common sales methodology that leverages the processes used by high performers. You’ll be able to prepare your salespeople for different situations that they may encounter and your team will be able to leverage those best practices in real-time. Your process will make it easier for new salespeople to get on board.
A Process That Reps Prefer
Sales reps appreciate a standardized process because it helps them be more efficient, develop stronger skills through repetition, and spares them from having to reinvent the wheel with every prospect or opportunity. When they come to a roadblock, the process provides them guidance with suggested next steps. Sales reps also gain a sense of company commitment, support, and dedication toward the sales department and their efforts.
Managers Benefit Too
Sales managers and business owners appreciate the sales process concept. Once the process is defined, it is easier to manage the sales funnel and the expectations surrounding sales activities. Managers can determine where in the sales process the sales reps are getting stuck so they can address these issues sooner rather than later. Sales issues are often due to lack of effort or the ineffectiveness of sales methodology. A sales process takes the guesswork out of this, and allows a manager to manage the sales reps behavior and activities accordingly.
The greatest satisfaction, for both the company and its sales reps, comes when they see the true outcomes of being able to handle different selling situations successfully, positioning themselves stronger against competition, communicating their value proposition more effectively and closing more accounts faster. With an effective sales process, goals will be met consistently and achieved without wasting time, energy and money.