Businesses measure success in multiple ways, usually involving a combination of revenue, profitability, growth and customer satisfaction. Businesses are comprised of fundamental functions, generally including product, operations, services, as well as corporate functions such as HR and Finance. When it comes to measuring performance and results, the Sales function often operates with the most visibility and clarity–did the company hit the number, or not? In fact, the fate of the leadership of the sales organization often rests with this simple conclusion. Hit (or exceed) the number, and survive another year to do it again. Miss it, and be subjected to increased scrutiny and eventual replacement.
Experienced sales leaders recognize both the importance, and the limitations, of this overly crude metric. Yes, meeting or exceeding “Plan” is essential, but at what cost? And what else must good leaders take into consideration to reach this end? What levels of investment are required? What degree of support is necessary from marketing and services? Do front line sellers have the necessary tools and resources to achieve their goals?
Looking beyond the simple metric of hitting or missing Plan, nearly every company suffers from underutilization–wasted time, resources and money. Measuring sales utilization and ROI is not the same as one would measure factory production, inventory turnover and waste. But there are similarities; asking the right questions and tracking the right information can lead to considerable improvements for return on sales investment. Consider the following questions by general role type. How many of these questions would apply to your company?
Contact the Alexander Group and schedule a briefing where we will share benchmarks, insights and proven frameworks to help you evaluate and improve sales productivity and sales ROI this year.
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Original author: Paul Vinogradov