Call Us: +44 (0)1748 473000

Call Us Facebook Twitter Pinterest Linked in Instagram Youtube GooglePlus

Sweet Talking your Sales Team

10 November 2016 Written by 

Anyone who knows me knows that I wholeheartedly believe that sales people can be the most difficult people in the world to manage.

And I should know, I am one.

As a group, they are boisterous and smooth talking. They don’t really do detail and most seem to enjoy flying close to the edge.

But those are the traits that make them good at selling. A good sales person can connect with you and get you to sign on the dotted line. But without the detail and record keeping, they’ll never be a great sales person.

Training up a new member of a sales team to keep the kinds of records we want is always tricky, but the reward is huge and well worth the perseverance.

So how do you get them to take down the detail and keep up to date records on their deals?

I’ve got three words for you: Listen, Document, and Incentivise.

Listen

Sales people love to talk, so ask them what kinds of information they would find the most useful to record. If you’ve got a big team, get them to brainstorm the top five things they need to know about an ongoing sales opportunity. Yes I know you will have your own thoughts but getting this 'buy in', with some ownership from the sales person will just make everyones life easier.

Hopefully these 5 items line up with the five things you, as their manager, need to see.

But even if you don’t, you now have ten pieces of information that need to be recorded.

Document

Now that you know the vital information, add it to your CRM. Create any custom fields you need and take some time to organise the page in a sensible manner. By making field population easy for them, you stand a better chance of getting your team to fill in the necessary information.

Tip: Making fields mandatory is a great way to get people to fill in the absolutely vital information, but if you make too many fields mandatory, the records become a pain to populate. So be sensible. The trick is be to be sure that the information you are requesting is available at this time, don't make your sales people guess - you know they will and it devalues what you are trying to achieve.

Incentivise

Now you need to give them some kind of incentive to start filling in these records. You might start basing sales commission off the Opportunities or you could make one of their KPIs relate to fully populated records—no records, no bonus.

It may sound harsh, but in my experience, the actual adjustment period is quite short. Once your sales team start seeing the benefits of good record keeping reflected in the opportunities they’re winning, they’ll turn it into a normal part of their process. 

Lets be honest, if they follow the rules and record the data required in an intelligent way everyone will be happy - the sales team win more deals and you both reap the financial rewards, not to mention the streamlined approach to pipeline management that you as a manager get - as they say "Its all good" !

Rate this item
(2 votes)
Graham Anderson

Before I got my start in the tech industry as part of Apple's UK Mac launch team, I was a professional drummer (notice I didn’t say musician). But once I got in, I was hooked and I’ve been involved in the tech industry, primarily software development, for over 20 years. I founded this company and I now have the enviable title of System Architect (as well as Managing Director) here at OpenCRM.

#WeAreOpenCRM

Twitter Feed

OpenCRM Enjoy the bank holiday everyone! #bankholiday #FridayFeeling #Friyay
OpenCRM Want to know more about the team here at OpenCRM? There's all kinds of great info on our blog.… https://t.co/s8fH03tBaE

Address

HQ:
Software Add-ons Ltd
(OpenCRM)
1 Battalion Court
Colburn Business Park
Richmond
North Yorkshire
DL9 4QN
United Kingdom
Tel:
+44 (0)1748 473000
Fax:
+44 (0)1748 348003
Skype:
OPENCRM_UK
Reg #:
England & Wales 05387424

marker Find on Google Maps

News

It's Not Easy Being G…

In the words of the world famous Kermit the Frog – ‘It’s not easy being Green’! We at OpenCRM are Green! so imagine my delight when I attended the recent North East Expo and the guys stood next to me were also green. They took the applause, however, as they also has a 6 foot frog with them. Talk about making yourself stand out! But why a 6 foot frog? As I walked amongst the various stalls and exhibitors I regularly heard ‘have you...

Always Record your Ac…

We have a long running (kinda sad) joke in the office. Whenever someone says that they forgot to do a particular job, someone will inevitably reply that they should get “some kind of system for that…maybe a CRM.” There’s always a bit of a sigh and a chuckle…I told you it was a sad joke. But the root of our vague amusement comes from the idea that, when we forget to do something, it probably is because we didn’t make a note...

Learning From Your Hi…

Humanity seems to thrive on failure. The news pages are filled daily with stories of defeat, misadventure and mishap. Business launches that flop spectacularly or a tech invention that goes wrong - for whatever reason we love to read about that kind of thing. In fact, at certain levels we have come to expect failure. Sporting fixtures for our national team or the Eurovision Song Contest are occasions where we almost relish the prospect of not winning. But lack of success...

System Config Never E…

We’re always looking for ways we can improve the service we provide to our customers. Sometimes this is a little tweak to our product and other times it is a little adjustment to our process. Sometimes these process modifications mean that we need a new way of capturing information in our own OpenCRM system. Let me give you an example: a small number of years ago, we were finding that information about new customers wasn’t always being passed across to the project...

Countdown to Xero

5….4….3….2….1….Xero Keeping on top of your current balance sheet is an essential part of anyone’s business, it answers the simple questions like... 1. Who owes us money? 2. How much do they owe? As many of you know, we have been integrating with Sage 50 Accounts package for several years now. The exciting news is that we now integrate with the Xero accounting package also. This integration is currently in beta testing, meaning that a small number of our existing customers are testing it out...

Direct Marketing With…

OpenCRM is designed to cater for a wide range of business challenges. Different clients tend to use the system for as diverse a range of problem solving as you could imagine – some will use the out-of-the-box system for general contact management whereas others like to focus on a specific function and carry out extensive custom work, designing this to meet their exact requirements. Working in the Projects team, I get to help these customers in reaching their goals for their...