Time for Salesperson Evaluations

March 30th, 2015

Time for Salesperson Evaluations

Last week one of my client’s and I were discussing the end of the first quarter, salesperson performance and next steps in their business strategy.  The conversation lead me to suggest the following steps for my client as well as all of my readers.

Step One: Evaluate your team, place each of your team members into one of the following categories:

  • Stars: How do we keep them?
  • Learners: High potentials, do we have a plan to train?
  • Solid Performers: How do we maintain?
  • Followers: Good for now, but what about next year?
  • Deadwood: Can we do better?

Step Two: Once you have classified your team, the next step is to develop a plan to review each person and set a learning path for them.  We recommend that this becomes a formal procedure between the Sales Manager and each salesperson, at least twice a year.    Weuse a Salesperson Development Tool from our Sales Managers Tool Kit.  (The Tool Kit is a library of 40+ robust sales management tools we have developed during our consulting practice.)

The Salesperson Development tool includes a revenue vs quota section, but just as important it includes a section for the Sales Managers evaluation regarding:

  • Skills/Strengths: what needs work, what items are good
  • Development Plan, What actions are to be taken, Target Date/Completion Date
  • Obstacles and plans to reduce obstacles

This session allows both individuals an opportunity to honestly discuss career aspirations, personal goals and skill development.  Using this approach along with the Salesperson’s Business Plan the manager can fully coach the salesperson to the next level.

Now let’s provide you a few examples of possible recommendations based upon the five sales categories from the above list:

Stars: Provide them added responsibility; let them plan/run a few sales training meetings.  Ask them to coach new hire salespeople.

Learners: Schedule them for a sales training: book them into a sales class or assign them sales books to read and report on to the entire sales team or provide a technical resource to coach them on the various product/service solutions you sell.

Solid Performers: Focus them: have them build a 6 month plan with metrics that they would share with the team, this will help the underperformers to see what these salespeople do to achieve their goals.

Followers: Monitor them closely: Schedule a bi-weekly team meeting of the “followers” and discuss activities and assist them in developing sales strategies on new opportunities. Observe who responds, who does not.

Deadwood: Spend very little time with them; many sales managers waste time/brain power on trying to “save” these individuals.  Start recruiting.

Building a regular cadence of “inspecting what you expect” of your team will increase the professionalism of your team and will drive performance.   What are your thoughts on improving the performance of your sales teams?

Building a regular cadence of “inspecting what you expect” of your team will increase the professionalism of your team and will drive performance.   What are your thoughts on improving the performance of your sales teams?

Ken Thoreson “operationalizes” sales management systems and processes that pull revenue out of the doldrums into the fresh zone. During the past 17 years, our consulting, advisory, and platform services have illuminated, motivated, and rejuvenated the sales efforts for organizations throughout the world.

He was recently ranked for the third year in a row by Top Sales World magazine as one of the Top 50 Sales & Marketing Influencers for 2014.

Ken has written 5 books, his latest book is: SLAMMED! for First Time Sales Managers, Ken provides Keynotes, consulting services and products designed to improve business performance.  Need more sales management resources? Check out his Sales Management Tool Kit or the Acumen Project.

Ken@AcumenMgmt.com  www.AcumenManagement.com

Blog:  www.YourSalesManagementGuru.com

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