Ten of Spades: Addressing Salesperson Underperformance: Identifying Training Needs: Recognize areas for skill development to boost performance

Ten of Spades: Addressing Salesperson Underperformance: Identifying Training Needs: Recognize areas for skill development to boost performance

Elevating Sales Performance: Why Targeted Training is Non-Negotiable

Visualize your sales team as a high-performance sports car: every part is intricately designed to maximize output and speed. When one part fails or underperforms, the entire machine is impacted. An underperforming salesperson isn’t just a localized problem; their performance deficit has a cascading effect on the entire team and, by extension, the organization.

It’s critical to realize that top-performing salespeople—let’s call them the eagles of the sales world—are keenly aware of this dynamic. Eagles prefer flying with eagles. They don’t want to share the sky with pigeons. When they sense a lack of commitment or skill in their peers, it doesn’t just frustrate them; it can often drive them to look for new skies, affecting talent retention. Therefore, addressing underperformance isn’t just about the laggards; it’s also about keeping your top talent engaged and committed.

Mapping the Landscape: A Diagnostic Strategy

Before you can course correct, you must know where the course diverges. The diagnostic phase in identifying underperformance is analogous to a medical diagnosis: specific, nuanced, and multi-layered.

Skill Gap Analysis: The cornerstone of any diagnostic approach is identifying the skills essential for success in a sales role and comparing them to each salesperson’s current skill set. The resulting gap becomes the focal point for development.

Quantitative Metrics: Data like sales numbers and conversion rates are early indicators of performance issues. They provide an objective basis for determining which team members are falling short of expectations.

Qualitative Insights: Beyond numbers, insights can also come from the team’s ecosystem. Peers, managers, and clients often provide invaluable feedback that fills the gaps left by quantitative metrics.

Fine-Tuning Performance: The Role of Tailored Training

Once you’ve diagnosed the problem, the next step is targeted intervention through specialized training. This isn’t about generic, off-the-shelf programs but bespoke training modules designed to address specific deficits.

Specialized Training Modules: For instance, if a lack of product knowledge is the issue, a training program emphasizing product specifications and unique selling points becomes the go-to solution. Similarly, modules focusing on persuasive techniques are warranted if communication skills are lacking.

The Power of Mentorship: One of the most effective interventions is to pair underperforming salespeople with your eagles. This provides real-world insights into effective sales strategies, boosts morale, and fosters a culture of excellence.

Post-Training Evaluation: Following training, it’s imperative to reassess performance to ensure that the skill gap has indeed been bridged. This cycle of assessment and re-assessment keeps the training programs dynamic and relevant.

Beyond Training: Adopting a Holistic View

While skill-focused training is invaluable, it’s crucial to remember that not all performance issues are rooted in a lack of skill. Emotional well-being, company values alignment, or personal issues can impact performance. A truly practical remedial approach is comprehensive, addressing skills and the underlying emotional and psychological factors.

To encapsulate, each salesperson in your organization is a crucial gear in the well-oiled machine of your sales operation. Top performers, the eagles, don’t want to fly with pigeons; they want to soar with other eagles. By effectively diagnosing performance issues and deploying tailored training, you’re not just elevating the struggling individuals but also creating an environment where your best talent will want to stay. The result is a resilient, high-performing sales team better equipped to meet and exceed the complex challenges of today’s market.

Unlocking Sales Potential with MEDDPICCC: A Comprehensive Guide

Unlocking Sales Potential with MEDDPICCC: A Comprehensive Guide

Elite sellers are the linchpin of any successful sales organization. These high-performing individuals are often the highest-paid employees within a company—and for a good reason. Their skills in identifying, qualifying, and closing opportunities bring in significant revenue and provide a competitive edge in the marketplace. So, how can you groom an average salesperson into an elite seller? Enter MEDDPICCC, an advanced sales qualification methodology that serves as a roadmap for understanding every component of a purchasing decision process and, therefore, the sales process.

If you’re serious about elevating your sales game, you cannot afford to miss our in-depth video tutorial on MEDDPICCC. This comprehensive guide explores the nuances of transforming your business by adopting this powerful tool. By the end of the video, you’ll be better equipped to forecast sales accurately and close more deals efficiently.

This blog post will offer a sneak peek into what MEDDPICCC entails, why it’s crucial for your sales strategy, and how to get started.

Understanding the MEDDPICCC Methodology

What is MEDDPICCC?

The acronym MEDDPICCC stands for Metrics, Economic Buyer, Decision Criteria, Decision Process, Paper Process, Identify Goals, Coach, Champion, and Competition. Each component provides critical insights into a prospective customer’s buying experience, helping sales reps tailor their approach accordingly.

The core benefit of MEDDPICCC is that it assists you in qualification. Knowing whom to target and how to approach them is essential for any sales professional. When you focus on quality over quantity, you save time, effort, and resources—allocating them where they’ll make the most impact.

One of the most frustrating challenges in sales is forecasting. Without a structured approach, your predictions are little more than educated guesses. MEDDPICCC gives you a robust framework for assessing opportunities, enabling you to forecast with a greater degree of accuracy. What is the decision process within the prospect? If you don’t know, how can you forecast a date or even the size of the deal? How does the prospect issue orders to new vendors? If you don’t know, the timing of the order after you have “won” is probably just a guess, and it is likely incorrect.

How to Get Started with MEDDPICCC

Acquainting Your Team: The Crucial First Step

The inception point of any change within an organization lies in awareness and education. You can’t implement what you don’t understand. This tenet holds especially true for MEDDPICCC, a methodology that demands a nuanced understanding of multiple components. Comprehensive training isn’t just for your sales professionals; it extends to sales managers and even C-suite executives. Why? Because MEDDPICCC isn’t just a sales tool; it’s an organizational strategy.

Think of your company as a well-oiled machine. For the machine to work efficiently, each big or small cog must perform its function seamlessly. Sales managers will use MEDDPICCC for strategizing and forecasting. Executives will use it for decision-making and setting organizational objectives. Hence, the methodology must permeate through your corporate hierarchy.

Actionable Steps:

Building a Repository of Cases: The Power of Real-World Examples

Once you have an understanding, the next logical step is application. Here, a repository of case studies can be invaluable. These aren’t merely stories but instructional narratives that bring the MEDDPICCC components to life. They serve a dual purpose: validating the methodology and offering a blueprint for its practical application.

Consider the power of a case study in explaining, for instance, the importance of ‘Identify Pain’ in the sales process. A well-documented case could vividly demonstrate how understanding a client’s ‘pain points’ led to a tailored solution, leading to a successful deal closure. Such concrete examples are invaluable for training, reiteration, and continuous learning.

Actionable Steps:

  • Collect past sales data and identify cases where MEDDPICCC components were effectively employed.
  • Engage with your sales team to document their successful sales narratives.
  • Regularly update this repository as new cases emerge and ensure it is easily accessible to the entire team.

Continuous Monitoring and Fine-Tuning: The Never-Ending Cycle

Implementing MEDDPICCC isn’t a one-off event; it’s an ongoing process. Your marketplace isn’t static; it’s dynamic and ever-changing. Likewise, your MEDDPICCC strategy should be flexible and capable of adapting to new challenges and opportunities.

Continuous monitoring allows for a feedback loop that helps you assess how well your strategy works. Are you qualifying leads more effectively? Is your forecasting becoming more accurate? Use key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge these factors. But don’t just stop at assessment; make the necessary adjustments to ensure the methodology aligns with your evolving business goals.

Actionable Steps:

  • Establish a set of KPIs specifically for evaluating the effectiveness of MEDDPICCC.
  • Conduct quarterly reviews to assess how well the methodology is aiding your sales process.
  • Make data-driven adjustments to your MEDDPICCC strategy, and inform your team about these changes.

The Roadmap to MEDDPICCC Mastery and the evolution to elite selling

  • Begin by watching our comprehensive video guide on MEDDPICCC. This long-form content is designed to give you a complete understanding and is packed with actionable insights.
  • Conduct a workshop on MEDDPICCC with your sales team. Options for half-day, full-day, or two-day workshops are available. Interested parties should contact Sean@NewSales.Expert or use our calendar to make an appointment with Sean.
  • Introspect: How well does your existing sales process align with the MEDDPICCC methodology? Where do gaps exist, and what steps can you take to close them?

For those who want to make the transition from average sellers to elite sellers, understanding and implementing MEDDPICCC is not optional—it’s imperative. Armed with this methodology, you’ll be better positioned to qualify your opportunities, allowing you to focus your time and resources where they’ll deliver the most value. In addition, it empowers you to forecast sales with unprecedented accuracy.

Don’t miss the opportunity to dive deeper into MEDDPICCC by watching our detailed video tutorial. If you are serious about achieving bigger and more profitable sales opportunities, this video is your first step on the path to mastery. For those interested in more personalized guidance, I offer specialized workshops tailored to your business needs. Feel free to reach out and start your journey towards sales excellence.

Now, ask yourself this: Are you ready to elevate your sales strategy with MEDDPICCC? If so, your first action should be to watch the video. Because remember, knowledge isn’t just power; it’s profit.

Nine of Spades: Addressing Salesperson Underperformance: Setting Performance Benchmarks: Define standards for success to measure against.

Nine of Spades: Addressing Salesperson Underperformance: Setting Performance Benchmarks: Define standards for success to measure against.

Understanding the Nature of Sales Benchmarks

Let’s start by grounding ourselves in the foundational premise: Sales benchmarks are not merely numerical goals but the defining coordinates of success. If you will, consider them as your organization’s North Star, guiding your sales team through the complexities of quotas, customer relationships, and revenue targets. Benchmarks transcend the limitations of raw numbers and extend into the realm of qualitative assessment—whether it’s the ability to understand customer needs or to align solutions accordingly.

To further clarify, think of benchmarks as akin to a financial portfolio’s balance of risk and return. They offer a comprehensive view of performance, much like a diversified portfolio that offers an integrated financial health assessment. Each component—be it customer retention rates, average deal sizes, or response times—contributes to this multifaceted view. Benchmarks thereby act as a composite score that tells you where you are, where you should be, and, most importantly, how to get there.

The Nuances of Crafting Benchmarks: It’s About Alignment

Creating effective benchmarks requires alignment with broader organizational goals, current market realities, and the sales team’s inherent capabilities. Striking this balance is akin to setting the interest rate in an economy. Set it too high, and you risk stalling growth; set it too low and invite complacency.

Thus, the process of setting benchmarks demands an understanding of averages and outliers. If a high percentage of your sales team consistently meets the benchmarks, they may not be challenging enough. Conversely, if only a small fraction achieves them, it could demoralize the rest and raise questions about the benchmarks’ attainability. The idea is to challenge your team just enough to stretch their capabilities while ensuring the goals are rooted in reality.

Diagnosing and Addressing Underperformance: A Structured Approach

The objective of performance benchmarks isn’t to point fingers at underperformers but to provide a structured mechanism for evaluation and growth. Having established benchmarks, the onus shifts from mere identification to a deep-rooted understanding of ‘why’ the underperformance occurred.

Is it a lack of training? Is it a mismatch between talents and tasks? Or perhaps it’s a more systemic issue related to product-market fit? Each diagnosis demands its unique course of action, requiring leaders to blend empathy with decisiveness. As you identify these pain points, you’re not merely putting a spotlight on them; you’re transforming them into actionable insights. Provide the necessary tools, training, or environmental changes, and monitor the impact on performance against the set benchmarks. In this way, underperformance becomes not a point of failure but an opportunity for both personal and organizational growth.

Benchmarks: Your Compass in the World of Sales

To CEOs, Sales Managers, and leaders in the trenches, understand that performance benchmarks are not just numbers on a performance review sheet but the milestones on your roadmap to success. They offer a dynamic, multi-dimensional gauge by which to measure, evaluate, and, most crucially, enhance performance.

Just as a ship’s captain would be rudderless without a compass, your sales team would navigate in the dark without well-defined benchmarks. These are not mere numbers but signposts in your journey toward sales excellence. They offer a vision of what could be and a measurement of what is. Establishing and adhering to these benchmarks provides direction, clarity, and a lens through which to transform challenges into growth opportunities.

Ace of Spades: Understanding your client’s business: Researching Industry Trends: Stay updated on shifts in the market to provide relevant solutions.

Ace of Spades: Understanding your client’s business: Researching Industry Trends: Stay updated on shifts in the market to provide relevant solutions.

Sailing Through the Business Sea: The Imperative of Understanding Client Industries

In the intricate dance of sales management, salespeople often become profoundly attuned to their own products, services, and performance metrics. However, they sometimes lose sight of an elemental cornerstone: genuinely understanding the client’s business. This omission is akin to a sailor venturing into the sea without comprehending its currents and tides. A lack of this depth of knowledge can lead one astray, making the voyage uncertain and potentially perilous.

Let’s start with an underlying principle: triumph isn’t simply about the merit of your product or service in the sales ecosystem. It’s intricately tied to the bigger picture of your client’s sector, their unique requirements, and inherent challenges. For instance, a physician would never recommend a new drug without an exhaustive assessment. Similarly, a sales maven should not provide solutions without a comprehensive grasp of the client’s operational goals and challenges.

Picture the world of commerce as a sprawling symphony with its distinct sections – finance, technology, health, entertainment, and more. Introducing a novel element into this setting without recognizing its intended cadence and synchronization is like striking a discordant note amidst a harmonious performance.

Moreover, the essence of industries is not static. They’re akin to living entities, evolving and reshaping, influenced by many external dynamics. Remember the challenges of supply chains a few years ago during the global pandemic crisis, which was disruptive to nearly every industry. Reflect on the tech sphere, where an innovation leap of merely 10% can redefine market paradigms. Or ponder the fashion industry, where trends can instantly pivot demand dynamics. This underlines the paramount significance of monitoring industry currents. It’s about envisioning not just the present but anticipating the future trajectory. And this foresight isn’t just academic—it’s a tangible asset sculpting sales tactics, product innovations, and client dialogues.

With each industry wave comes a plethora of challenges and windows of opportunity. A sales expert attuned to these modulations can craft proactive strategies. For instance, if insights indicate a surging trend of telecommuting in a domain, a firm dealing in office essentials might transition towards catering to home office needs. The fulcrum here lies in actionable strategies. Recognizing a shift is the starting line. The finish line? Crafting aligned strategies saying, “We recognize your industry’s transition, and our solution is primed to cater to it.”

To the CEOs, sales leaders, and organizational vanguards heeding this narrative, the takeaway is obvious: arm your sales brigades with the arsenal to perpetually decode industry waves. Foster a culture of perennial learning through seminars, journals, or deep-dive analytical sessions.

The commercial realm doesn’t exist in isolation. A ripple in one segment can cascade through others. By ensuring your salespeople are enlightened about their relative industry and the overarching market landscape, you elevate them, and consequently, your enterprise, to a pedestal of relevance, cognizance, and adaptability.

Truly grasping your client’s domain transcends the immediate deal. It crafts enduring alliances, painting you as an ally, not merely a supplier. Demonstrating to a client your intrinsic understanding of their industry’s intricacies, evolutions, and potential paths carves an indelible impression. It resonates with the ethos, “As your domain transitions, we remain with you, presenting apt solutions at every juncture.”

In the fluctuating oceans of commerce, let profound insight and cognition be your navigating star, directing you toward triumph, pertinence, and perennial collaborations.


August Newsletter

August Newsletter

I hope you enjoy my August Newsletter

I hope you enjoy my August Newsletter

Published: Tue, 08/15/23


Sean O’Shaughnessey
CEO and President
New Sales Expert LLC
[email protected]
513.348.8700

6561 Bluegrass Way
Mason OH 45040
US


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Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Mastering Mid-Year Reviews: The Sales Perspective – Episode 35

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Mastering Mid-Year Reviews: The Sales Perspective – Episode 35

In this enlightening episode of “Two Tall Guys Talking Sales,” Sean O’Shaughnessey and Kevin Lawson delve into the fundamental aspect of setting clear expectations in sales, mirroring the way parents do with their children. With mid-year reviews around the corner, it’s time to reflect, analyze, and readjust your sales strategies.

Kevin starts with a compelling anecdote about his childhood bedtime routine to explain the critical importance of clear communication and setting expectations. The duo emphasizes that salespeople and leaders must carry the same burden to ensure success. They then transition into discussing data, people, and customers, shedding light on how they interplay in the sales ecosystem.

Sean broadens the conversation to the art of adaptation and how market changes could necessitate mid-year modifications to sales processes. This aspect is brought into sharp focus with the unprecedented disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Both hosts agree on the necessity of data-informed decision-making, underlining the importance of balancing past performance with future potential. They delve into the aspects contributing to understanding a customer’s potential, including market changes and various environmental factors.

Kevin and Sean also touch upon the essentiality of upskilling the sales team, the significance of coaching, and the benefit of taking a hard look at individual performance. The conversation concludes with a detailed discussion on data analysis, with both hosts advocating for leveraging your CRM system for a thorough assessment of your sales process, the documentation, and the distribution of deals.

So, whether you’re a seasoned salesperson or new to the game, this episode is filled with vital insights that you can incorporate into your sales strategy, setting you up for success in the latter half of the year.

May Newsletter Featuring Information About Fractional Executives

May Newsletter Featuring Information About Fractional Executives

March Madness Teaches Us Great Coaching Techniques

March Madness Teaches Us Great Coaching Techniques

March Madness teaches us great coaching techniques

March Madness teaches us great coaching techniques

Published: Tue, 03/14/23


Sean O’Shaughnessey
CEO and President
New Sales Expert LLC
[email protected]
513.348.8700

6561 Bluegrass Way
Mason OH 45040
US


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Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast: Why Should a Company Assess Its Practices in Sales?

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast: Why Should a Company Assess Its Practices in Sales?

In this podcast, Kevin and Sean discuss why it is important for companies to assess their sales plans and processes. They explain that having a sales plan is about more than just setting quotas and involves figuring out how to bring value to the customer. It is also important for smaller businesses that are transitioning from founder-led sales organizations to have an assessment to build the right infrastructure. The conversation also touches on how CEOs should still be involved in customer conversations regardless of company size and that competition, complacency, and consistency should all be considered when assessing one’s own organization. Lastly, they invite listeners to reach out with any questions they may have about creating a great sales organization.

You can subscribe to our podcast by searching in your favorite podcast player for “Two Tall Guys Talking Sales,” or you can listen to the embedded version here.

The following is a transcript of the podcast above. It has been sparsely edited to increase its readability, but many of the idioms and poor spoken grammar have been left in place. Fireflies.ai automatically generated the transcription, and, as capable as that product is, there are times when words are missed or the sentence structure is incorrectly interpreted. We have tried to catch all of these software misses, but we are confident that some still remain. The below text is provided for those that would rather read than listen to a podcast.

 00:00

Kevin Lawson

Hello, and welcome to Two Guys Talking Sales. I’m Kevin. 

 00:06

Sean O’Shaughnessey

And I’m Sean. 

 00:08

Kevin Lawson

We’re glad you’re here. In this podcast, we’ll tackle real sales issues big and small for salespeople selling situations and sales leadership. We’ve collectively built successful careers around the problems and solutions used in B2B selling, from software to services, manufacturing, and distribution. We have sold to and for many of the world’s most recognized brands as well as some you’ve never heard of. For roughly the next 15 minutes, we invite you into our world of experience, where we’ll take one issue and dig into it so you might have a solution for when you encounter a similar situation in your career. Let’s dive in. Sean, what are we talking about tonight? 

 00:48

Sean O’Shaughnessey

Kevin, we should discuss why a company should assess its sales plan, process, and methodologies. How about that? 

 00:57

Kevin Lawson

Sounds Good. Maybe we should start by asking, “What are a sales plan, system, and methodology.”

 01:03

Sean O’Shaughnessey

That makes sense to me. Do you want to start? Go Ahead.

(more…)