Enterprise sales leaders face significant challenges that make it difficult to exceed revenue growth objectives year after year. If you are on the expectations treadmill, you may need to modify your sales strategy.
Review the top five challenges to making your number in 2017.
1. Poorly defined sales process: 82 percent of CEOs said they have a broken sales process.
- Video Resource – The Seven Most Important Sales Process Questions: Watch Dan Perry and Eric Estrella discuss the seven questions that stand between you and the development of a sales process that holds strategic alignment with your buyer’s behavior.
2. Forecasting accuracy: 60 percent of companies will miss earnings expectations at least one quarter.
- Case Study Resource – Avoid Going from Hero to Goat Overnight Due to Poor Forecasting: Fine-tune your forecasting accuracy skills by learning how to correctly evaluate deals and effectively run quarterly business reviews while leveraging Sales Ops to hit revenue objectives. Mark Turner, the Senior Vice President EMEA at Genesys, shares his best-in-class forecast and pipeline management processes.
3. Available selling time: 35 percent of a field rep’s time is not spent selling.
- Case Study Resource – Increasing the Available Selling Time of the Sales Team: Stuart Kerst, Vice President of Sales Operations at HP, shares his expertise in how to streamline selling processes and outlines how to increase the available selling time, what data to target and how to leverage it.
4. High cost of sales: 32 percent are above the average selling, general, and administrative (SG&A) cost across all verticals.
- Article Resource – Closing the Strategic Gap in Your Spend Analysis: Does your company lump sales and marketing spend into SG&A expense? A deeper analysis correlates investments in customer-facing business functions with revenue growth and profits.
5. Turnover: 28 percent showed a decrease in sales head count over the past three years.
- Article Resource – The Most Effective Way to Predict and Reduce Sales Rep Turnover: While you can’t predict everything, you can identify an employee lifecycle. Then you can develop a proactive system for managing it.
Enterprise Sales Challenges – Footnotes:
- Lambert, Brian. “The Top 5 Issues Facing VP’s of Sales.” Ezine Articles, April 14, 2005.
- Based on an SBI review of SBI 100 findings in which a company did not make or exceed one quarter of earnings expectations.
- Based on SBI best practices.
- SG&A Benchmarks. “2015 SG&A Expense as a Percentage of Sales by Industry Sector.”
- Based on the Excel COUNTIF function run on the SBI 100 list to determine if employee head count decreased over the past three years.