My “post production” was a little off last week-my apologies. I was asked to speak at a company function in Costa Rica on the 14th. The meeting was held for the company’s top salespeople. All in all it was a great experience! My thanks to the company for inviting me.
One of the top producers for this company is a man named Sal. Sal was asked to address the group on why he has been so successful in the insurance business. What he explained should be included in every sales manager’s handbook, if one even existed. Get this. Sal spends approximately 80% of each day in front of prospects! That is not a typo. 80%!!! And yes, his closing ratio is very high, which is the reason why this gentleman makes over $300K annually. I love this guy!
Sal explained that he has a very regimented “sales behavior plan”, which includes specific marketing activities, appointment setting and face-to-face sales calls. Sal tracks every sales related activity that he does. His ability to manage his time evolves from his sales activities. There is no “fat” or time lost in his day. None! Obviously there is more to Sal’s success than just sales activities. He has a great product that a great number of people need and he has great company support. In other words he has the Right Product at the Right Time in the Right Market. And Sal is the 4th part of this formula-the Right Person selling.
Regardless of whether you are a new or experienced sales manager one of your responsibilties is to ensure that your salespeople have a sales behavior plan. I have talked about this before so you’re probably rolling your eyes a bit. Somewhere on my tombstone will be etched the words SALES BEHAVIOR PLAN! These plans are at the core of what makes salespeople successful. Of course, you need good products, good support and other elements but without a SBP your salespepople will at best be average. These are some of things that go into a SBP:
Number of prospecting calls
Number of face-to-face sales calls
Amount of time in front of prospects
The ratio of phone calls (or other marketing activities) to appointments
The return on marketing activities in terms of responses from prospects
I know what you’re thinking. Our business is different than insurance. I realize that but you, as the sales manager, can take the above 6 items and others and plug them into your company and industry. This is no different than the “funnel’ that people rant about incessantly, except this is an easier approach. You owe it to your salespeople to make them accountable for having a SBP and you need to stay with this skill set as the year progresses.
By the way, Sal made more money than any other salesperson in the room. Yes, he has been around awhile so he made mistakes before he figured all this out. Age has nothing to do with this though. Build a plan and
GO SELL SOMETHING!
The Final Thought: It pays to plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark. Unknown