It’s not exactly a news flash to learn that top performing reps spend more time planning and conducting sales calls than low performers. But did you know that the difference is only 20 minutes per week? Based on our research of over 75 sales organizations, top performers, defined as the top 20th percentile, spend on average 20 minutes more per week in engaged selling time compared with core and low performers.
Could this 20 minutes per week (or 1000 minutes per year) be the key differentiator? Maybe. Maybe that extra 5 minutes per meeting is helping them close the deal or get bigger deals.
The research shows that the answer is far more nuanced. Of the 75 sales organizations in this sample, 41% had high performers that averaged LOWER engaged selling time compared to core and low performers. The positive correlation between high performers and higher EST is not exactly overwhelming, and is only true for 59% of the sales forces.
We know that the amount of engaged selling time is only part of the puzzle. Many other factors are at work, including but not limited to:
1) the quality of the customers they call on – how well are they targeting and qualifying each sales call?
2) the quality of their time – how effective are they at listening to the customer, tailoring the value proposition, handling objections, and closing the deal?; and
3) the quality of their support resources – can they turn around pricing decisions quickly, get specialist help when needed, and deliver the goods and services on time?
Quantity of time matters. Not surprisingly, quality matters too … perhaps even more. Increasing sales time is only effective if the time is being well spent.
Original author: Paul Vinogradov