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Stuck in the Gap? Lead Your Sales Team to Greatness!

Posted by on April 11, 2012

Sales TeamAre you stuck in the gap between truly great sales and the reality that your sales and leadership team is struggling?

Most of the data on sales success and sales best practices in the field inevitably leads to the conclusion that your sales force is only as strong as the sales leadership they get. Any lasting change has to start with the Vice President and roll like a wave all the way through the often-overlooked Regional/District Managers.

Not sure your team needs outside help? Some indicators that your sales leadership may need some intensive work on alignment and performance enhancement are:

  1. You have a high number of Region Managers that are recent field promotions, i.e. very successful sales reps that you have promoted to Region Manager positions.
  2. You have a high level of turnover at the Region/District Manager level.
  3. You get very good results on a certain set of products from one region and completely different results from another region (inconsistent execution on your product portfolio).
  4. You have too many Territory Managers/Sales Reps that underperform to their sales plan and are not engaged in an aggressive developmental plan to correct the issue.

You need a proven process for sales leadership development that will help your organization achieve better numbers on the following metrics:

  1. Percent achievement of sales plan
  2. Full product portfolio sales execution
  3. Number of conversions during product launches
  4. Reduced undesired sales rep turnover

At CGWA, the journey from mediocre to great looks something like this:

  • We do a very careful analysis of the current state of your sales leadership performance
  • We ask you to define your vision for what great would look like for your business
  • We customize a solution and get it to the sales leadership team as quickly as possible, up to the standard of performance and execution that you would like to see

Our research indicates that a lot of our potential clients are spending literally hundreds of thousands of dollars training their sales force as a whole, but spending very little to train their Region Managers, which is a sadly misdirected allocation of funds. Repeated studies into how organizations invest in sales execution lead us to this conclusion: The most important investment you can make is to ensure that your sales leadership is aligned, motivated, and focused on the right best practices and disciplines to drive successful sales to your business.

Greg Wright founded CGWA in 1977 on the principle that customized, skill-based training provides the best learning experience for employees, as it incorporates a company’s culture, business trends, and “real life” situations into the structure of the training.

Grow your sales garden: 7 expert tips from SPROUT!

Posted by on July 11, 2011

SPROUTSales has always been a high burnout profession. These days, intense pressure on the shoulders of sales professionals leaves them exhausted, frustrated, and wondering why they ever got into sales in the first place! It also leaves sales organizations with a serious turnover problem.

Using a metaphor they call the Sales Garden, Greg Wright and longtime friend and colleague Alan Vengel collaborated on the critically-acclaimed book, SPROUT! Everything I Need to Know about Sales I Learned from My Garden.

SPROUT! addresses the “big picture” of sales. It is packed with useful tips and practical advice that can be applied immediately to any sales situation.

Now we are sharing 7 expert tips pulled straight from the pages of SPROUT!:

  1. Envision your sales career as a garden—tend it, water it, and enjoy it, and you will reap the fruits of your labor.
  2. Get to know your customers on a deeper level. Be observant. Pay attention. Every customer, like every plant, will need a different approach and way of nurturing.
  3. When you’re with your customer, listen and ask questions 75 percent of the time—that’s a best practice.
  4. Persistance is a constant—you’re seeding and following up, and you’re persistently connecting to build relationships.
  5. Know your customers better than the competition does. Ask for feedback: what’s working, what’s not, what’s next.
  6. Build a reputation as a problem-solver and your customer will value you all the more.
  7. Sales opportunities, like plants, mature at different times. Harvest accordingly. Harvest with the future in mind—after your first sale, always prepare for the next one.