High sales team turnover is a fact of life for many organizations. These companies are hemorrhaging top talent, and it’s costing them dearly. They’re watching their competitive advantage slip away.
The HR leaders we work with understand what’s at stake. They know high turnover isn’t a minor concern. It’s an urgent problem. Their question for us is simple: “How do I stop the bleeding?”
Solving the problem—not just temporarily, but for good—starts with understanding the challenges sales teams face.
What’s Behind the Revolving Door?
At high-turnover organizations, sales reps are overworked and overwhelmed. They spend more time managing relationships than they do selling. They aren’t getting quality leads; they aren’t tuned into their buyers. They’re underperforming, and their morale is low. Here’s what they struggle with daily:
No defined sales strategy or methodology.
Marketing and sales aren’t in sync. Quality leads are few and far between. Account segmentation is lacking, and buyer segmentation is nonexistent. The buying process isn’t clearly mapped, or it doesn’t factor at all.
Too many responsibilities.
We refer to this as “role corruption.” Salespeople are expected to do it all: hunt new business, care for current customers, and act as the “repo man.” Since their compensation is based on performance, they’re looking to go where they can maximize their earnings. (Competitors tend to be first on their list.)
Enablement is sorely lacking. Sales managers aren’t coaching their reps or assisting them with current prospects. If a CRM system is in place, it’s hard to use, and no training is available.
Bottom line: These teams have no compass, no cohesion, and no culture. Therefore, reps have no reason to stay. A high-turnover “death spiral” is all but guaranteed.
Why Low-Turnover Organizations Outperform the Rest.
Their teams are empowered by real-time knowledge and a fine-tuned methodology.
Sales reps know who their ideal customer is and where to hunt for new business. They understand how buyers make decisions. They know when and how to close the sale.
Reps aren’t juggling multiple roles.
They spend at least 65% of their time selling. They are free to focus on maximizing their compensation and improving their effectiveness.
Coaching is a high priority.
Sales managers make time to develop and support their talent and strengthen their teams.
There are no obstacles to success. Sales reps stay, and they continue to grow. The result is a robust, high-energy sales force that performs at its peak.
Begin Reducing Turnover Today
At SBI, we use a sequenced methodology to help transform high-turnover sales teams. You can initiate the process in your organization in three steps:
- First, determine how your sales managers and reps spend their days. Use surveys and observations to track their activities. SBI’s Time Study Template can help you define your categories.
- Second, learn who your ideal customer is. Buyer segmentation and account segmentation are critical to optimizing sales.
- Third, eliminate role corruption. Identify the biggest “time sink” in your organization (typically, configure price quote). Reduce the amount of time your sales team spends on it.
Our methodology works because it helps eliminate “thrashing” (a lot of work with no results). It also ensures you’ll build upon previous successes.
Long-term success requires a balanced focus. That’s why we focus 50% on talent and 50% on improving the sales environment. This should be your goal as well.
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