Here are a few key areas to review:
- Selling Time: is it World Class >70%?
- Role Clarity: are current roles blended?
- Competencies: do your hunter reps possess the required competencies to be successful?
- Reporting Relationship: do hunter reps report to a leader that is focused on hiring, training, developing and motivating talent?
- Expectations: are they crystal clear and reinforced consistently?
If your reps only spend 40-50% of your time selling, it is going to be difficult to produce World Class results. Reduce the administrative burden and allow your top hunter resources to focus on high value activities.
Do your “hunter” reps spend time selling to current customers? If so, you have a blended job and because it is easier to call on current customers, your reps will naturally gravitate towards these interactions. Improve role clarity by ensuring your best hunter resources focus exclusively on hunter selling activities.
How many times have you heard “I think ____ would be a good at sales because they are a people person”? Likeability is an important attribute of a sale professional, but it alone will not drive new business results. Competencies such as the ability to persuade, financial selling skills, resilience, and energy may be important success indicators. Implement a system to ensure you are acquiring talent that is capable of performing at a high level in a new business role.
Do your sales leaders have the ability to properly train and develop your hunter sales professionals on how to properly sell new business? Are they in the trenches helping reps prospect and manage sales campaigns while also diagnosing development needs. Or do they sit in the office and push paper?
Do your hunter sales professionals know exactly what is expected of them? Get granular. Reps need know what is expected of them on a yearly, quarterly, weekly, and daily basis. They should also fully understand the payoff of executing the game plan.
Most sales organizations are not executing the five steps above at a World Class level. Why not? To become best in class may require substantial reorganization and disruption. If you don’t put the correct talent and structure in place the systems will always appear to be broken. Ask the hunter sales professionals in your sales organization a series of questions related to the sections above to determine where the major gaps are and take action.
Next time we will discuss selling time and three methods for determining the current reality.