9 Results You Can Expect From Sales Onboarding

Lee B. SalzThere’s a lot of buzz today around sales onboarding and sales enablement. You may be wondering if sales onboarding should be on your executive team’s priority list of corporate initiatives. Here are nine reasons why it belongs high on your list.

1. Investment protection. When companies hire salespeople, they are making a significant revenue investment. Onboarding, not only protects the investment, but also helps to ensure a high rate of return on it.

2. Reduced ramp-up time. One of the biggest executive complaints about new salespeople is the amount of time it takes for them to produce meaningful revenue for the company. By having a structured onboarding experience, this production timeline is reduced, meaning that the dollars invested before seeing a return are also lessened.

3. Increased revenue performance. Executives also complain that their salespeople cannot sell the value of their products which means they sell at a less than desirable price point. Onboarding provides you with the opportunity to teach salespeople how to properly position its products with prospects.

4. Improved client experience. We’ve all been on the other side of the desk dealing with inept salespeople. Because of our frustration, we were open to discussions with the competition. Onboarding ensures your salespeople are equipped with the knowledge your clients expect to glean from them while delivering a fantastic experience.

5. Brand protection. When salespeople cannot speak knowledgeably about the products, the industry, etc., it creates a negative reflection on the corporate brand. Onboarding protects your brand by teaching your salespeople what the marketplace expects them to know.

6. Turnover reduction. In the first year of employment, the most common reason for turnover on a sales team is that expectations are not met. Either the salespeople quit or you let them go. In both cases, it is bad news for the revenue investment. Onboarding helps to minimize those instances, which impacts both the top and bottom line of the company.

7. Increased candidate pool. How does onboarding increase your candidate pool? Many companies limit their hiring scope to just those salespeople with industry experience. Yet, there are only so many people in your industry and only a small subset you would want on your team or who would want to be on your team. Onboarding empowers you to broaden your candidate scope to include strong sellers from other industries as well.

8. Recruitment tool. As you look across the desk at a candidate during an interview and wonder how this individual will get up to speed selling for your company, guess what? The candidate is wondering the same thing! Onboarding becomes a selling point in the interview as a way to attract top talent. It demonstrates corporate commitment to their success.

9. Hiring mistakes found. Sometimes, you can get bamboozled during the interview process. After all, salespeople know how to sell themselves. Onboarding gives you the opportunity to identify concerns early on with new salespeople and take action. This is true investment protection.

These 9 sales onboarding results hit both the top and bottom line of your company. What other corporate initiative on your list has the potential to make this level of impact in the company?

Lee B. Salz is a leading sales management strategist specializing in helping companies build world-class sales forces through hiring the right salespeople, effectively onboarding them, and aligning their sales activities with business objectives through process, metrics and compensation. He is the Founder and CEO of Sales Architects, Business Expert Webinars and The Revenue Accelerator. Lee has authored several books including the best-seller “Hire Right, Higher Profits.”  He is a results-driven sales management consultant and a passionate, dynamic speaker. Lee can be reached at lsalz@SalesArchitects.net or 763.416.4321.

Hire Right, Higher ProfitsMy endorsement of Lee’s book, Hire Right, Higher Profits: ” Too many companies operate on the “churn method” when it comes to hiring salespeople. They bring a lot of people in and churn out the bad. They figure that eventually some good ones will rise to the top. This is not only exhausting but costly. Pay attention to Lee Salz’ advice in “Hire Right, Higher Profits.” By hiring right in the first place and properly onboarding salespeople into their roles, you’ll stop wasting time and money.”

Learn more about hiring and onboarding a world-class sales force in “Hire Right, Higher Profits.” It is the #1 rated sales/sales management book on Amazon.

Motivating a Sales Team

Management TrainingMotivating A Sales Team With Self Expression
by Guest Blogger, Julie Bryce

Every sales team goes through periods when they seem to be less motivated. This is sometimes down to market conditions, sometimes because of the competition and sometimes for team spirit reasons. For the manager, it is how you deal with sales team motivation that will set you apart. One thing to bear in mind at all times is each member of your sales force is an individual. There are plenty of motivational techniques that you can learn, but not all of them garner results in all cases. Be flexible and find the right motivational approach for each team member. For some, selling is a lifestyle choice, who is creating their ideal life. For others, professional sales work is a choice, but they may be equally suited to other sorts of work. [Read more…]

How to Motivate Salespeople

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How to Motivate Salespeople
Excerpt from Tom Hopkins on Management mp3 series.

Other topics on this program include:

  • Solving the Management Puzzle
  • Effective Recruiting Strategies
  • Powerful Training Techniques
  • Sales Management – The Interview
  • Salespeople — Knowing and Understanding Them
  • Motivation and Counseling
  • Handling Terminations

Questions? Contact Customer Service: info@tomhopkins.com or 800-528–0446 (Continental U.S. & Canada)

The Essential Ingredient in Every Sales Meeting by Ron Marks

Ron Marks

In the past twenty-five years I have seen thousands of sales meetings conducted by managers throughout the world. I can tell within a few moments whether a sales manager is a professional or an amateur by how they begin a sales meeting. I would bet you can too. Of all the things you do as a sales manager, this is the most public thing you do in your business. Holding an excellent sales meeting is a great chance to motivate the team and disseminate information and it is also a chance to lose momentum in a hurry!

Sales managers who have decided to run a sales meeting because they have something important to convey have passed the first test for a successful meeting. They have a purpose! I realize this test seems obvious, but think back to all of the meetings you have been to that had no value or agenda whatsoever.

[Read more…]

Finding Solutions to Your Small Business Sales Challenges by Dave Kahle

Years of economic muddle!

That was the title on a seminar brochure I received recently. As I survey some of the forces flowing through our economy, and witness the way in which they impact my clients, I have to agree. 

Unfortunately, these forces have brought a cloud of confusion to CEOs and sales executives trying to grow their businesses.

One common response to this confusion is what I call “Popcorn.” Imagine kernels of popcorn simmering in hot oil in the bottom of an old-fashioned popcorn popper. As the heat rises, one of the kernels explodes rocketing against the side of the popper. Moments later, another kernel explodes and shoots off in another direction. Before long, the canister is full of careening kernels bouncing in every direction.

That’s how many businesses attempt to increase sales when they start feeling economic pressure. As the heat of the situation rises, they know they have to do something. Along comes a good idea and, pop, like a kernel of exploding popcorn, they lunge at the idea.

The idea can be anything. Maybe a media representative suggests a new advertisement. So, “pop” off they go with new advertising. Or a salesperson suggests that a computer program will solve their problems. That sounds good, so off they go after that idea. Then an advertising agency suggests a new brochure and off they go again.

Desperately hoping that one of these ideas can solve their problems, they frantically chase each one.  Unfortunately, these ideas rarely have any relationship to one another. Worse, they often present only superficial solutions to deeper problems and divert time and energy away from real solutions. The result is often more pressure, more confusion, and more energy expended in the wrong areas.

A far more effective response is to create a sales and marketing system that provides an interconnected, measurable set of processes and tools that ultimately result in increased sales. Where would McDonald’s be today without a system to consistently produce hot hamburgers? Where would Toyota be if they had no system to design and build new automobiles? The key to success for these businesses has been their ability to create and manage effective systems to accomplish their goals.

Sales and marketing can be treated in exactly the same way. The process of acquiring customers and then expanding the business with them can be systematized.  As a system is created, so are the means to produce predictable, regular sales results.

Any system should start with a thorough understanding of prospect’s needs and interests. Add to that an honest assessment of the unique value the company brings to the market. Focus on the highest potential market segments, and develop segment-specific processes and tools to help you reach the market in the most cost-effective way

A well-designed system also provides a set of criteria that can be used to assess the potential in new ideas thereby eliminating the desperate reactive “Popcorn” effect. The system is the solution.         

Dave Kahle has trained tens of thousands of B2B salespeople, sales managers and business owners to be more effective in the 21st Century economy. He’s authored eight books, and presented in 47 states and seven countries. You will receive over $500 in bonus gifts from business growth leaders when you buy Dave’s new book, How to Sell Anything to Anyone Anytime. To access Dave’s training, insights and tools online, visit The Sales Resource Center.

Praise in Public, Criticize in Private by Ron Marks

Ron Marks

As modern day sales leaders, we should always praise our sales teams in public and give them critical feedback in private. I recently experienced one of the worst cases of a leader abusing the position of manager by calling out one of his sales people in front of the entire team. Yet he did not do this in the way that most people think of when they think of “public criticism.”

A member of the sales team was being asked to account for their activity in their sales territory. Almost to the point of “double secret probation” (Animal House fans will recognize the term) the leader was constantly asking for detail on sales calls, appointments and this person’s general whereabouts. By the end of the week this particular sales person was fed up with the big brother approach and finally decided enough was enough and threw up the white flag and resigned. The leaders’ response was a simple “Good Riddance” as if that was the objective all along. [Read more…]

Sales Management Characteristics of a Great Sales Manager

Being a good manager is like putting a jigsaw puzzle together.  The first time you try to fit the pieces together it takes awhile to get everything to fit smoothly.  The next time you attempt to make the pieces fit you are a little more familiar with the pattern and each time after that it becomes more and more natural to easily match everything together and have it all turn out right.  The pieces of the puzzle a manager has to put together are comprised of advertising, recruiting, holding productive meetings, motivating a person who is in an emotional or financial slump, handling types of personalities you don’t relate to and recruiting people that are happy on other jobs, but are ready for change if you follow-up with them properly among other things.  All of these techniques combined together make a great manager.  Review a sample audio session at Tom Hopkins Sales Management [Read more…]

When You Must Terminate a Salesperson

Being a firm believer in the importance of choosing the right words in all situations, I often find myself studying the impact of things I hear. I think about how the words make me feel. Then, I try to turn the situation around to where I capture an understanding of the person who said them and what they really meant. Not many people do this. Few invest the time and effort into studying words, even though how you use them dictates nearly everything about life, relationships and business.

When you reach the level of manager, executive or business owner, you really have to watch what you say and how you say it. You now have a group of people whose lifestyles depend on your business. They will always be on the alert for any sign of challenge in the business that could negatively impact them. You must learn to be crystal clear in your communications, yet use words that evoke the emotional impact you desire. [Read more…]

When to Train by Ron Marks

Ron Marks

Most sales managers and their companies have terrible timing when it comes to improving the skills of their sales teams. Unfortunately most companies conduct training only when a sales person is new to the company. After they have a few sales under their belts, training stops.

If you were a military leader and had a critical mission in front of you, you would likely train harder and more intensely than ever before. You would want your team’s training to be current in order to be most effective. Yet sales managers send their sales people out into the field each and every day without the slightest bit of current training and skill development. [Read more…]