The truth is that once a Managing Director decides to hire an external sales consultant to review their sales team or sales department they have often left it too long.
The company has been in sales growth decline for at least 6 months, some sales team members have been behind their sales targets for 12 months or more and never got a sales forecast correct. This has demotivated other members of the team and has created a culture of “it’s okay to under-perform”.
The truth is that it is okay to have a bad quarter but two in a row or more and questions need to be asked. But where does the fault lie if you’ve created the culture where this is acceptable?
For many companies they are in decline, their product or service used to be competitive and lead the market but they stopped innovating and lost their agility and flexibility. They stopped listening to the market-place and went into their shells. Some sales team members became lazy and complacent and there is little new blood coming in to shake up the hierarchy.
As their competitors adopted sales tools and improved their sales processes and moved from transactional to consultative and value-based selling they were able to steal a march. Using CRM and business intelligence from their marketing departments and deeper understanding of client needs they were able to build better relationships and predict future needs. They were also able to innovate their products and services to better align with these needs and structure their sales teams better around these customers.
The market for your products or services is constantly changing and your sales structure and team need to be able to adapt to these changes. The old way of selling won’t work any more and if you are the Managing Director you need to act sooner rather than later before it becomes harder to implement change.
Getting an external perspective or performing an independent sales and marketing audit of your department might be one good approach.
Jefferson Sales provides independent sales management consultancy and interim sales services to Managing Directors and can be contacted on:
T: +44 (0)20 7096 2005