You’re feeling proud of your strategy, but you’re not sure it’s completely foolproof. And you know the risk of missing your number next year is enormous. In other words, it’s not a risk you can afford to take.
Don’t take the risk. Increase the probability of making your number with the latest , How to Make Your Number in 2018. Rely on the Sales Strategy section on pages 342 – 422. If you haven’t reviewed it yet, it’s a must have resource.
Thankfully, there is a way to ensure your 2018 plan gets off on the right foot. Start by evaluating, whether your sales strategy is a problem. If you can consistently exceed your revenue objectives each month, quarter, and year, the answer is no. But if you are on the expectations treadmill, you may need to modify your sales strategy. Here are some signs to look out for that might indicate it is time to take a fresh look at your sales strategy:
- Your industry, and competitors, are growing revenues faster than you are.
- You recently missed a quarter, or year.
- The revenue growth expectations may not be realistic.
- You recently received a sizeable increase in your revenue goal.
- You do not have enough sales reps to meet the revenue expectations.
- Your channel partners are not selling enough.
- Sales is not acquiring enough new customers.
- Sales is not growing the revenue stream from the existing customers.
- The monthly, or quarterly, revenue pressure prevents you from being strategic.
- You do not have any discretionary budget to invest in sales productivity.
- The company is pursuing the dual goals of revenue growth and cost of sales reductions.
- There are not enough A player reps and sales managers in the organization.
- The board, and the CEO, may not understand the level of difficulty of your role.
- The product team is not providing the sales team with differentiated products and solutions to sell.
- The marketing team is not providing the sales team with enough leads to meet the sales objective.
- Your buyers have changed the way they make buying decisions.
- Your win rates are too low.
- Your average selling price is too low.
- The sales cycle is too long.
- The revenue performance varies greatly from rep to rep and from region to region.
If the above accurately describes your business, in part or in total, your sales strategy might need to be modified.
What is the solution to a sales strategy problem? Let’s start with how to approach the problem.
First, it is important to frame the problem correctly. It is important to distinguish between the need for a strategy modification and the need for better execution of the current sales strategy. The sales strategy framework in the following pages will help you make that distinction.
Second, it is important to challenge your current assumptions. The top growth executives never assume they have all the answers. Meanwhile the average growth executives say, “We are already doing that,” a lot. The exercise questions in this section will force you to challenge everything.
Third, don’t rely on your past experiences. The business world is changing too quickly, rendering past experience less and less valuable. This workbook is based on the practices used by the top growth executives in the world. Comparing yourself to what they are doing will be enlightening.
Fourth, break down the big problem of sales strategy into smaller problems. The approach used by sales leaders who never miss their numbers is to separate strategy from execution. Ask yourself, “Am I doing the right things?” Your answer will tell you if you need a strategy modification. Then ask yourself, “Am I doing things right?” This answer will tell you if you need to improve execution. Sales strategy is too big to look at in total. This is why we broke it down into multiple steps, phases, and questions.
Fifth, get an outsider’s perspective, particularly someone from outside your industry. You are too close to the sales strategy to analyze it objectively. This is why we recommend doing this with one of our consultants.
Lastly, when working, use a common language. This will make complex concepts more simple.
Proceed through this sales strategy section of the Revenue Growth Methodology.
Complete the exercises and determine if your revenue growth would increase with a modification to your sales strategy.
So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or unsure of your 2018 sales strategy, set your planning in motion with a proven guide. Here is an interactive tool that will help you understand if you have a chance at success. Take the Revenue Growth Diagnostic test and rate your Sales Strategy against SBI’s emerging best practices to find out if:
- Your revenue goal is realistic
- You will earn your bonus
- You will keep your job