“How can I do my end of month sales forecast for The Exec, when you guys don’t input or update your % probabilities of conversion into your pipeline tracker!”… laments the frustrated Head of Sales to his brow-beaten Sales Execs at the monthly sales meeting. Sadly… a common lament. Yet so many imploring Heads of […]

Thought I would share the bones of a coffee chat I enjoyed with a beloved client a while ago, because the theme of one particular topic seems to crop up on a semi regular basis currently. I reckon that both the consumer and the B2B worlds are going app crazy these days. I am continually […]

Notice lately that the word “optimisation” seems to be creeping into Corporate jargon more and more?  I have – or at least I think I have.  Bit hard for me to tell, because I am heavily biased toward the word.  I am hearing it being used across multiple functions…optimise the collections process; optimising plant resources; […]

So, you have run your annual StO analytics. Thereby, amongst a range of productivity driving outputs, you will have refreshed which customers belong in your top class for targeting, your mid class and your lower class. Putting aside the granularity of the math around your methodology, you should also have essentially produced 3 sub-classes within […]

This post is the final in a 3-part series: “Making the emotional connection during the sales process …..more important than ever” To review part 1 CLICK HERE To review part 2 CLICK HERE Part 3 of 3: Let’s apply the same principle now to the B2B scenario where the emotional connection with the buyer is […]

This Bulletin is the second in a three part series. To review part 1 click here Making the emotional connection during the sales process ……….. more important than ever (part 2 of 3)   In this climate of negative buyer/consumer sentiment and talk of a new recession, making the emotional connection with the buyer is […]

  In this climate of negative buyer/consumer sentiment and talk of a new recession, making the emotional connection with the buyer is even more critical than ever for the aspirational sales professional.  The concept of making the emotional connection in the buyer conversation is certainly not new, but there seems to be an irony at […]

It’s tough…bloody tough out there these days…especially when you are a professional services provider selling to corporate Australia.  Double especially,  when your value proposition is not necessarily readily tangible to the target audience, and if it is, the target immediately considers the investment required as “discretionary”. The degree of difficulty in capturing the imagination in […]

A while ago, I found myself caught up in a meaty coffee conversation with some key sales leaders of a beloved client of ours … the Australian arm of a global healthcare giant.  We were discussing their recent history regarding sales team structure evolution … a few years back, the territories were based on geographic […]

In a B2B landscape, where many sales teams continue to come under RoI scrutiny ( a common scenario since the GFC , 10 years ago), an old outdated paradigm seems to be hanging on longer and better than it deserves.  Single point or single face Account Management.  The notion that the sales exec is the […]

Selling features-advantages-benefits has been around since Noah came off The Ark. There can’t be a B2B sales exec around who has not been exposed to some sort of FAB training. But couching the benefit in a way that truly and uniquely connects to the customer’s emotional reality is a skill that few have mastered. One […]

“Sell the benefits not the features!”…..but are you REALLY making the emotional connection? Selling features-advantages-benefits has been around since Noah came off The Ark. There can’t be a B2B sales exec around who has not been exposed to some sort of FAB training. But couching the benefit in a way that truly and uniquely connects […]

  Follow along with the accompanying power point presentation and video clips as Glenn and the specialist panel discuss the topic : Sales team size and structure …Is it better to have specialist hunters vs farmers – or hybrids?    

Many of us have found ourselves in the position , selling a technical service , where the successful sales exec (hunter) needs a prerequisite level of technical and industry knowledge that does not come with a crash induction course.  When and how do you justify the addition of another such BDM, with the cost and […]

Many of us have found ourselves in the position , selling a technical service , where the successful sales exec (hunter) needs a prerequisite level of technical and industry knowledge that does not come with a crash induction course.  When and how do you justify the addition of another such BDM, with the cost and […]

I stopped counting and running ratios a few years back now, but at last count at least 50% of the B2B sales organisations I asked failed the value chain question. I find myself in workshops with heads of Sales, Marketing, Customer Service, Finance, Operations seeking clarity from the group in terms of identifying their customers […]

How do we compare on sales team RoI? Run a very simple litmus test: Take the total revenue budget that you hold the sales team responsible for delivering Apply a cost-of-goods gross margin conversion ($GM) Take your total cost to company to fully mobilise the sales team (fully loaded including– wages, super, car, travel disbursements, […]

How do we compare on sales team RoI? Run a very simple litmus test. Take the total revenue budget that you hold the sales team responsible for delivering Apply a cost-of-goods gross margin conversion ($GM) Take your total cost to company to fully mobilise the sales team – fully loaded – wages, super, car, travel […]

Four meaty conversations with Heads of Sales last week provoked me to lament that many such sales leaders continue to struggle to reinvent the function of their sales teams to address the permanent change in their customer relationship  world, at this time, now approaching 10 years since the GFC effected that change.  The four chats […]

Four meaty conversations with Heads of Sales last week provoked me to lament that many such sales leaders continue to struggle to reinvent the function of their sales teams to address the permanent change in their customer relationship world, at this time, now approaching 10 years since the GFC effected that change.  The four chats […]

Ask just about any Head of Sales in B2B corporate Australia about the nature of the relationship between the Sales Execs and their respective customers and you will hear rhetoric about business partnerships and the training, leadership and expenditure invested to move beyond transactionally based sales relationships. Too often, though, once the first layer or […]

Ever pondered how much your company invests to pay, incent, equip and fully mobilise the sales force to deliver the revenue budget they are set?  Ever wondered what impact reducing the investment by 10% would have on the ability to deliver the revenue budget?  What if the revenue budget was increased by 10%….what increase if […]

Hire for sales attitude and aptitude – not technical knowledge?  Are we witnessing the commencement of the turnaround? When I started my career in sales in the good old days of the mid 80’s, the world for B2B sales organisations and professionals was so, so different to now.  We would not have believed it possible […]

Hire for sales attitude and aptitude – not technical knowledge?  Are we witnessing the commencement of the turnaround? When I started my career in sales in the good old days of the mid 80’s, the world for B2B sales organisations and professionals was so, so different to now.  We would not have believed it possible […]

A long standing client of ours asked us about this recently.  Three things were bothering him in terms of productivity and cost-to-mobilise of his own sales team … Are there ways to rebalance our traditional reliance on the face to face visit and the phone, in order to rise above all the noise and clutter […]

A long standing client of ours asked us about this recently.  Three things were bothering him in terms of productivity and cost-to-mobilise of his own sales team … Are there ways to rebalance our traditional reliance on the face to face visit and the phone, in order to rise above all the noise and clutter […]

Sherlock Tomes, back on the case with tomes of writings for your glossary of sales team optimisation definitions.  After last month’s installment, one punter asked me the difference between sales team optimisation and sales optimisation.  Good question.   Well not all sales organisations possess a sales team to execute their sales function and process.  Think about […]

As a disciple of the church of sales science…………I have to confess that I am as guilty as that other one over there for using jargon when communicating on my topic of great passion……….. sales team productivity and return on investment (see…….I told you so!).  I would like to boast that I created all the […]

Last post, we lingered on the two broad types  of tier 1 +/- tier 2 customer visits/contacts.  Proactive and responsive visits/contacts.  First focusing on responsive…when the customer initiates contact of a welcome nature, eg a business opportunity.  Here is the rule of thumb.  If the request is a one-off and ad hoc nature, and cannot […]

Fairly benign question, huh?   As players in the space occupied by Heads of Sales throughout corporate B2B Australia, we would have all been taught a similar principle. And this principle would usually go something like this… An opportunity should be sourced for possible entry into the pipeline, by: applying standard company profile criteria of attractiveness […]

In the previous two instalments of this post, I prosecuted the importance of visit:drive time ratio for the on-the-road B2B sales team (sales team productivity)…with initial specific focus on the drive time denominator (click here to read the first post in this series), then turning focus to the numerator … visit time (click here to […]

Last week we prosecuted the importance of visit:drive time ratio for the on-the-road B2B sales team…with specific focus on the drive time denominator.  In fact I put out there for your consideration, 8 quick steps to calculate your sales rep/territory managers drive time between customers/prospects (sales team productivity).  Now to the numerator … visit time. […]

For territory based sales reps, visit : drive time ratio SHOULD be a critical kpi and sales team productivity focus.  Sadly, very few B2B sale organisations measure it.  As our cities get bigger and bigger, and our roads get more and more clogged, this metric should be closely monitored for territory mapping and itinerary journey […]

Last post I argued that optimum B2B sales management system development includes setting visit activity rates as a benchmark, not a target. In other words, a level modest enough to be meaningful, but sets a minimum standard that must be achieved…not an upper end target.  I then argued that in the same sense, the visit […]

The B2B sales organisation world is still roughly equally divided…those that measure their reps against a visit activity rate target…those that don’t. The pro’s… Focusses rep activity onto visiting to a specific numeric level “what gets measured gets done” culture Facilitates cross-team competitiveness , driving up this vital activity The con’s … A form of […]

Been thinking about your internal meaty sales process discussions around the setting of contact frequency for customers when you  annually classify them using new CV – pv <current value; potential value> data?  Our standard starting point  for players within the mature B2B supplier type industry would be… Tier 1 = F2F monthly Tier 2= F2F […]

Last month we considered the common plight of the B2B sales organisation around getting the sales staff down the retail outlet end of the value chain to recommend their products preferentially against cheaper/inferior alternatives?  I put it to you that the more the technical application knowledge and customer education aspect of the product in question, […]

The catch cry of many an upstream manufacturer, with a large and expensive mobile sales team, plying a retail focussed channel to market.  A retail channel that will not provide exclusivity, leaving supplying manufacturers to slug out the share-of-wallet war at the retail coalface. The common answer and strategy of this scenario?  Train the reps […]