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The Secret to Scaling Sales Effectiveness

Posted in: Sales and Marketing Management, Sales Enablement Strategy, Sales Training, Coaching, and Onboarding

Research from SiriusDecisions’ 2018 Global Chief Sales Officer Study found that fewer than 50% of sales reps are hitting quota and that at 70% of companies, barely 30% of reps are meeting quota. These statistics illuminate an unsettling fact — the majority of sales teams are ineffective.

With less than half of their sales team hitting quota, it’s easy to understand why sales leaders often focus their time and energy on top performers in the hopes that they inspire the rest of the team to keep up. However, this only exacerbates the issue. Neglecting core performers who, on average, make up 60% of the sales force, is a huge missed opportunity. Core performers, or “B reps,” are actually a company’s most valuable revenue driver.

Why is that?

Research done by the Sales Executive Council found that a 5% increase from the middle 60% of performers yielded 80% more revenue than a 5% increase from just the top 10%. If sales leaders want to increase quota attainment, they have to start by improving the effectiveness of their core sellers.

How to Move the Needle

Quota attainment is a universally high priority for sales and enablement leaders. So why are the majority of sellers struggling to hit their numbers? Better yet, how can scalable and lasting change be achieved to drive quota attainment for the masses? We recently discussed these questions and more with Heather Cole of SiriusDecisions in our webinar, Fire Up Your Sales ROI by Thawing the Frozen Middle.

In the webinar, we explored:

  • How to define and measure sales effectiveness
  • Why reps are failing to meet goals
  • How to drive scalable and lasting change to achieve quota attainment for the masses
  • What role technology plays

To improve the effectiveness of core sellers, sales leaders and enablement teams must first define what sales effectiveness means to the organisation. Once a clear definition is created, sales leaders and enablement teams can use data to identify sales activities that are driving revenue and those that are falling flat. These proven best practices give sellers the roadmap they need to achieve individual and team goals without unnecessary confusion or heroics. Clear success patterns aligned to the sales organisation’s goals are the foundation for more effective execution.

Incorporating the established sales activities into onboarding, coaching, and content guidance helps sellers to put these winning processes and best practices into action. But before they can engage customers, sales reps must be armed with compelling content that is well-aligned to buyers’ needs and therefore encourages the potential customer to act. Relevant and well-timed content enables core sales reps to tackle any buyer conversation confidently.

Sales Enablement Drives Effectiveness

Now that sellers have a clear definition of success, proven best practices, and compelling content, how do sales leaders scale effectiveness across their team? Improving one rep’s effectiveness is good, but how about 20? The best way to accelerate effectiveness across the entire sales organisation is by investing in a sales enablement platform that provides analytics into the sales activities that are most effective.

When sales leaders have visibility into the sales activities that drive revenue, they can discuss which to make best practices with team members. Creating or tweaking best practices by using real-world data improves seller buy-in and potential outcomes. With buy-in from sales reps, enablement teams and sales leaders can then replicate high performing behaviour across the entire sales force.

Clearly defined actions that tie directly into sales goals make successful sales habits easier for sellers to understand and execute – ultimately helping reps guide buyers more effectively through each stage of the sales cycle.

To learn more about how to improve sales effectiveness and drive revenue, download our newest brief, Fire Up Your Sales ROI by Thawing the Frozen Middle.