There are as many sales strategies in the world as there are companies that have sales forces. Even so, it's extremely easy to find out whether a company has a sales strategy that's going to fail, regardless of the details. Just ask the following six questions:
- Is the strategy clearly articulated, measurable and actionable?
- Does it includes a sales compensation plan reinforces the strategy?
- Does it retrain existing or hire new personnel to support the strategy?
- Is marketing producing leads and sales materials that support the strategy?
- Does if have the sales support necessary to execute the strategy?
- Is there a CRM system that measures the right metrics for the strategy?
The most important element is question 1. Let me put it bluntly. If your firm doesn't have a clearly articulated sales strategy, your managers are idiots, and your firm is probably floundering. But even if your firm is successful without such a strategy, it would be far more successful if everyone were working towards the same goals.
The above list is adapted, by the way, from a conversation I had a couple of years ago with Sharon Daniels, CEO of AchieveGlobal, a top sales training firm. In a future post, I'll explain what sales professionals must do to make a sales strategy actually deliver the big bucks (as in revenue and commissions.)