Enhancing Sales Performance Through Effective One-on-One Coaching Meetings

Enhancing Sales Performance Through Effective One-on-One Coaching Meetings

The effectiveness of sales management is paramount, particularly in how sales managers support their team members to enhance performance. The nuanced relationship between a salesperson and their manager can significantly influence their success, a topic that is gaining traction among CEOs and sales leaders seeking to maximize their team’s capabilities.

One-on-one meetings between sales managers and salespeople are not just routine check-ins but pivotal moments that can define a sales team’s success trajectory. These interactions are opportunities for sales managers to transition from merely overseeing to actively fostering the growth of future sales leaders. The effectiveness of these meetings hinges on the preparation and the approach both parties bring to the table.

A key aspect of these meetings is the focus on the sales pipeline. These are not annual reviews but regular, detailed discussions that provide immediate, actionable feedback. The format of these meetings should allow salespeople to lead the conversation, highlighting challenges and insights into their deals. By doing so, they take ownership of their responsibilities and develop critical analytical skills. It’s crucial for salespeople to come prepared, not with just a superficial overview but with a deep dive into their accounts, ready to discuss specifics such as potential roadblocks in deal closures and strategies for advancing stages in the sales pipeline.

Micromanagement can be a pitfall in these scenarios. While it may be tempting for managers to steer conversations, especially with less experienced salespeople, it’s essential to restrain this impulse. The goal is to guide salespeople to independently spot issues and develop solutions, fostering a more robust and self-reliant sales force.

Integrating technology, such as CRM systems, plays a crucial role. The sales leader and salesperson must thoroughly review all relevant data before meetings. This preparation prevents redundancy during discussions and ensures that the focus is on strategizing rather than information regurgitation. Such meticulousness shows respect for each other’s time and reinforces the value of each meeting.

Training salespeople to identify potential issues streamlines the sales process and prepares them to handle complexities in future deals. This approach enhances their problem-solving skills and aligns with broader business objectives, contributing to the company’s overall health and success.

The transformation of routine management into strategic mentorship can significantly impact a sales team’s effectiveness. Sales leaders must foster an environment where salespeople are empowered to analyze and lead discussions about their work, making these one-on-one meetings a cornerstone of a thriving sales culture. By doing so, they not only improve the immediate outcomes of their deals but also build a resilient and forward-thinking sales team.

Immediate Steps for Sales Leaders to Elevate Their Team’s Performance

  1. Schedule Regular One-on-One Meetings: Set a consistent schedule for one-on-one pipeline review meetings with each salesperson. These should be frequent enough to provide real-time feedback and support, ideally weekly or bi-weekly.
  2. Prepare Thoroughly for Each Meeting: Review the salesperson’s current pipeline and deal statuses in the CRM before each meeting. This preparation allows you to provide targeted advice and focus on strategic discussions rather than information recap.
  3. Empower Salespeople to Lead Discussions: Encourage sales representatives to prepare and lead the meetings. Provide a structure for these sessions but allow them to fill in the details and drive the agenda. This approach helps develop their analytical and leadership skills.
  4. Focus on Professional Development Goals: Be prepared to discuss sales targets and strategies during these meetings. You should identify and plan for each salesperson’s professional development and tailor coaching and feedback to help them grow into future sales leaders.
Proactive Coaching: The Key to Unlocking Exceptional Sales Performance

Proactive Coaching: The Key to Unlocking Exceptional Sales Performance

A shift is occurring away from simply correcting problems after they’ve happened toward a more proactive and developmental approach to coaching sales teams. This evolution in strategy empowers sales leaders, CEOs, and managers to not only meet but also exceed their targets through effective team management and personal development.

The concept of continuous improvement in sales begins with a focus on coaching. Unlike traditional reactive methods, modern sales leadership emphasizes coaching as a tool for ongoing development rather than merely correcting errors. This proactive coaching involves setting strategic goals with sales teams and using performance reviews—not as a critique but as a platform for growth and future planning. This method mirrors practices from top professionals in various fields who, regardless of their success, regularly receive coaching to enhance their performance.

Applying a coaching mindset to sales involves recognizing each team member’s individual needs and strengths. This personalized approach ensures that all team members, from the highest performers to those who might be struggling, receive the guidance they need to improve. The dialogue between a sales leader and their team shifts from what went wrong to what can be optimized, fostering a culture of continuous learning and adaptation.

An important part of this coaching process is the practical application of strategic planning, such as using quarterly business reviews (QBRs) to assess past performance and set proactive goals for future achievements. These sessions provide a structured framework for both leaders and salespeople to reflect on successes, learn from challenges, and plan actionable steps for ongoing improvement.

Leadership in sales also extends beyond internal team dynamics to personal development. Sales leaders are encouraged to invest in their own skills and capabilities to better serve their teams. This commitment to personal growth is crucial as it models the importance of lifelong learning to their teams, thereby instilling a similar mindset in their salespeople.

Effective sales leadership thus requires a dual focus: enhancing the team’s capabilities while simultaneously improving one’s own leadership skills. This approach not only achieves better sales outcomes but also builds a more resilient and adaptive sales organization, where both leaders and team members are committed to continuous improvement and excellence in their craft.

The role of a sales leader today is not just about managing a team but about actively participating in and fostering an environment of growth and excellence. By adopting a coaching mentality and focusing on both team and personal development, sales leaders can create dynamic teams that meet their current sales targets and are equipped to handle future challenges, ensuring sustained success and growth in the competitive market.

Here are a few actionable suggestions that a sales leader can do today!

  1. Schedule a Strategic Coaching Session: Identify a sales team member who could benefit from targeted coaching. Set up a one-to-one meeting for this week, focusing not on past shortcomings but on potential growth areas and setting actionable goals.
  2. Review and Refine Sales Metrics: Take a closer look at the metrics currently used to evaluate your team’s performance. Consider whether these truly capture the critical drivers of success or if they need adjustment to better reflect and promote your sales organization’s strategic goals.
  3. Initiate a Personal Development Plan: Reflect on your own leadership skills and identify areas for personal growth. Commit to a specific action, such as enrolling in a leadership workshop, starting a new book on advanced sales strategies, or scheduling regular check-ins with a mentor to enhance your leadership effectiveness.
Building High-Performing Sales Teams: Accountability, Strategy, and Success

Building High-Performing Sales Teams: Accountability, Strategy, and Success

Navigating the complexities and ensuring a robust and productive team are pivotal to achieving sustained success in sales. Accountability within a sales team requires pinpointing underperformance and creating an environment where feedback is constructive and growth is nurtured. The notion that no team member should be surprised by a change in their employment status underscores the importance of transparent communication. Setting realistic expectations and having regular discussions ensures that salespeople know where they stand and what is expected of them.

Underperformance can stem from various factors, but a common issue highlighted is the lack of skills. Identifying this gap is the first step toward rectification, paving the way for targeted coaching and development. Coaching isn’t just about improving skills; it’s about instilling the right behaviors that drive success. This is particularly crucial in small businesses where the owners might juggle multiple roles, potentially overlooking critical aspects of their operations, including sales.

The dialogue also touches upon the importance of diversifying strategies beyond a single mode of customer engagement. For instance, relying solely on email without integrating calls can limit a salesperson’s effectiveness. Similarly, focusing too intensely on a single key account to the detriment of prospecting new clients can jeopardize overall sales performance.

Sales managers play a crucial role in facilitating the development of their team members, not only by setting expectations but also by actively participating in joint sales calls and understanding the challenges their salespeople face. Unfortunately, many sales managers haven’t engaged in such activities with their team members in years, highlighting a gap in leadership engagement that can contribute to underperformance.

Peer accountability, celebrating small wins, and fostering a culture where successes are recognized and rewarded contribute significantly to a healthy sales environment. These practices motivate salespeople and help to identify those struggling, offering them the support needed to improve. It’s a collective effort, emphasizing that sales is not just about individual achievements but about lifting the entire team, reflecting the adage that a rising tide lifts all boats.

Therefore, Addressing underperformance is not just about identifying weaknesses but creating an ecosystem where salespeople are supported, skilled, and motivated to excel. It involves a comprehensive approach, from ensuring adequate training and development to fostering a culture of accountability and support.

For sales managers and CEOs, the key takeaway is the importance of being actively involved in their team’s development, understanding their challenges, and providing the resources and support necessary for success. Sales is a complex and demanding field, but with the right strategies and a supportive environment, outstanding results are possible.

Actionable items that you can use today!

  1. Evaluate Communication and Expectations: Initiate a comprehensive review of your current communication practices and the clarity of expectations within your sales team. Ensure that every member clearly understands their goals, the metrics by which they are evaluated, and the consequences of underperformance. This could involve revising job descriptions, performance metrics, or the regularity and format of feedback sessions.
  2. Implement a Peer Accountability System: Start the process of establishing a peer accountability system by organizing a team meeting to discuss its benefits. Encourage your sales team to share their successes and challenges openly, and pair team members to serve as accountability partners. This system should aim to foster a supportive environment where salespeople can learn from each other and motivate one another toward achieving their sales targets.
  3. Develop a Mini-Coaching Plan: Identify at least one salesperson on your team who may be struggling or showing signs of underperformance. Design a short, targeted coaching plan to address their specific challenges, whether they be skill-based or motivational. This plan could include shadowing a high-performing team member, attending a specific training session, or setting up regular coaching meetings to work on identified areas of improvement.
Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Transforming Opportunities: Chris Cocca’s Insights on Perfecting the Discovery Meeting – E85

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Transforming Opportunities: Chris Cocca’s Insights on Perfecting the Discovery Meeting – E85

In this invigorating episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales, hosts Kevin Lawson and Sean O’Shaughnessey delve into the crucial nuances of discovery meetings with the seasoned sales leader, Chris Cocca. They explore why many deals falter at this stage and how refining the process can dramatically enhance sales outcomes. Tune in to gain deep insights on optimizing discovery meetings to ensure you’re not just participating but capitalizing on these opportunities.

Key Topics Discussed:

  1. Understanding Discovery Meetings: A primer on what constitutes a discovery meeting and its pivotal role in sales.
  2. Common Pitfalls in Discovery: Chris Cocca discusses the frequent missteps that lead to lost deals post-discovery, emphasizing the need for thorough preparation and engagement.
  3. Refining the Process: Strategies for new and seasoned sales professionals to craft effective discovery processes within their organizations.
  4. Probing Beyond Surface-Level: Techniques for digging deeper during these meetings to uncover clients’ real needs and pain points.
  5. Impact Questions: How to frame questions that reveal the true impact of solutions on a client’s business, which are essential for closing deals.
  6. Managing Multiple Discovery Meetings: This section discusses the feasibility and strategic approach to conducting more than one discovery meeting, depending on the deal size.

Key Quotes:

  • Kevin Lawson: “9 out of 10 losses are a result of a miss during the discovery stage. This implies a critical look at our processes and the necessity for thorough post-mortems on losses.”
  • Sean O’Shaughnessey: “It’s hard to pre-write the third and fourth questions because they are unique to each opportunity. How do you coach your salespeople to dig deeper?”
  • Chris Cocca: “The first answer is never the full answer. You’ve got to probe deeper. It’s about asking the right impact questions to truly understand the client’s pain and needs.”

Summary:

Don’t miss this compelling episode where Kevin, Sean, and Chris dissect the art of the discovery meeting—a stage where many promising deals are lost. Discover actionable strategies to refine your approach, ask the right questions, and ultimately secure a successful outcome. Whether you’re a rookie in sales or a seasoned veteran, this discussion will equip you with the insights to transform your discovery process and better align with client needs. Tune in now to ensure your next discovery meeting paves the way to a closed deal, not a missed opportunity!

Remember to download this episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales to hear the full conversation and improve your sales strategies today!

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales – Selling Repeat Products: A Guide to Thriving in Consumable Product Sales – E69

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales – Selling Repeat Products: A Guide to Thriving in Consumable Product Sales – E69

Welcome to another insightful episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales, hosted by Kevin Lawson and Sean O’Shaughnessey. In this episode, the duo delves into the often overlooked but crucial sales aspect – selling consumable products. They explore strategies and insights for salespeople who deal with regularly consumed and repurchased products, such as manufacturing supplies, paper products, and even everyday items like toilet paper.

Key Topics Discussed

  1. The Unique Challenges of Selling Consumable Products: Understanding the dynamics of selling products that are regularly used up and repurchased.
  2. Strategic Sales Approaches: How to effectively sell consumable products in competitive markets.
  3. The Importance of Value Proposition: Emphasizing the significance of a unique selling proposition (USP) in consumable product sales.
  4. Salesperson’s Role in Consumable Sales: The critical impact of the salesperson’s understanding of the customer’s business and needs.
  5. Territory Management and Growth Strategies: Effective methods for expanding sales territories and managing customer accounts.
  6. Cross-Selling and Team Collaboration: Leveraging the strengths of a sales team through cross-pollination of skills and coaching.

Key Quotes

  • Sean: “In the environment we’re talking about here, where it’s a consumable product… the quality of the salesperson comes to play in a big way.”
  • Kevin: “You need to know where and how you compete. It’s as simple as that. Who do I call on? How do I compete? Is it price? Is it value?”

Additional Resources

  • Sean O’Shaughnessey’s book “Eliminate Your Competition” for more in-depth sales strategies – https://amzn.to/2K37ugx

Summary

In this episode, Kevin and Sean provide valuable insights into the world of selling consumable products. They emphasize the importance of understanding the unique challenges of this market, including the need for a strong value proposition and the crucial role of the salesperson in understanding and meeting customer needs. The discussion also covers effective territory management and the benefits of leveraging team strengths for cross-selling. This episode is a must-listen for sales professionals looking to excel in the consumable products market and for those seeking to enhance their sales strategies in competitive environments.

Listen to this episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales to gain valuable insights and strategies for excelling in the consumable products market, and to learn how to effectively grow your sales territory and manage customer relationships

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.

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Driving Sales Success: Why KPIs Are More Than Just Numbers – Episode 45

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Driving Sales Success: Why KPIs Are More Than Just Numbers – Episode 45

Get ready to unlock the secrets of mastering the sales game with Two Tall Guys Talking Sales! This episode delves into the nuances of key performance indicators (KPIs), their significance in measuring sales efficiency, and the art of mentorship among salespeople. Listen as our hosts Sean and Kevin uncover the analogy of KPIs and share insights about setting the right measures for salespeople at various career stages.

Key Topics Discussed:

  1. Understanding Leading vs. Lagging Indicators: Foreseeing future trends and not just measuring past achievements is important.
  2. KPIs and the Marriage Analogy: Setting the right measures to cultivate relationships, just as one nurtures a romantic relationship.
  3. Differentiating KPIs for New vs. Veteran Salespeople: Tailoring strategies for those new to the profession, the company, or the industry.
  4. The Power of Mentorship: Leveraging the experiences of veteran salespeople and fostering growth among younger salespeople.
  5. Sales Training and Coaching: How combining formal sales training with hands-on coaching can amplify results.

Key Quotes:

  • Kevin: “KPIs are not about only the number of deals you sold. It’s about, ‘Am I doing the right behaviors over time?'”
  • Sean: “Those KPIs can’t be a hundred percent looking backward. We need to look ahead and say, what are we doing to generate business?”
  • Kevin: “Activity measures for new salespeople are different. I’m talking about doing the well-researched, planned prospecting call.”
  • Sean: “The real advantage of The RAIN Group is its training combined with my coaching.”

Additional Resources:

With a blend of engaging analogies, actionable insights, and personal experiences, Sean and Kevin illuminate the complex world of sales KPIs. Whether you’re a seasoned salesperson or just beginning your journey, this episode is packed with nuggets of wisdom that can transform your approach to sales. Dive deep into the essence of mentorship, discover the right measures for tracking success, and unearth the significance of forward-looking indicators. Don’t miss out on this chance to elevate your sales strategies and metrics. Listen now and redefine your sales mastery with Two Tall Guys Talking Sales!

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 – Sales Leadership Mastery: How to Coach, Not Micromanage, Your Team – Episode 44

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Sales Leadership Mastery: How to Coach, Not Micromanage, Your Team – Episode 44

Welcome to another riveting episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales with your dynamic hosts, Sean O’Shaughnessey and Kevin Lawson. In this episode, our duo takes on a subject that stirs strong emotions in the sales world: micromanagement. With a combined experience of several decades in sales, Sean and Kevin delve into their philosophies, personal experiences, and provide actionable insights on transitioning from micromanagement to effective leadership. Whether you’re a salesperson, a manager, or a business leader, you’re going to find value in their candid conversation.

Key Topics Discussed:

  1. Micromanagement in Sales: Sean’s personal aversion to micromanagement, his challenges, and how he navigated them during his 38-year career.
  2. Transitioning from Micromanaging to Leadership: Kevin’s insights into the delicate balance between engaging the team and inadvertently falling into micromanagement.
  3. Differentiating Between Green and Seasoned Salespeople: How to manage new salespeople who need structure versus seasoned reps who require trust.
  4. The Importance of Trust in a Sales Team: Bad examples of trust violations and the cultivation of a culture of trust within the sales organization.
  5. Becoming a Leader: Strategies and practical advice for transitioning from a micromanager to a leader, and the value it brings to the sales culture.

Key Quotes:

  • Sean: “I despised anybody who was going to drive me day to day, ask me every single thing, question every single deal just didn’t fit well with my personality.”
  • Kevin: “How can I help? That’s how the shift comes in my mind from a micromanager to an effective leader. Instead of asking detail, detail, detail, they’re asking about resource, resource, strategy, that’s the big shift for me.”

In this engaging episode of Two Tall Guys Talking Sales, Sean and Kevin don’t just identify the problems associated with micromanagement but provide actionable insights and solutions for how to evolve into an effective leader. Whether you’re just beginning in sales or leading a team, their candid conversation will offer you strategies to avoid micromanagement, build trust within your team, and create a culture of success. Don’t miss this chance to learn from two seasoned sales veterans – tune in to this episode and take your sales leadership skills to the next level!

The Kaivac Impact: Harnessing Faith, Innovation, and Sales Excellence in the Cleaning Industry

The Kaivac Impact: Harnessing Faith, Innovation, and Sales Excellence in the Cleaning Industry

Bob Robinson, Jr., and his mechanical-engineer father, Bob Robinson, Sr., came up with the idea for a product the world truly needed 25 years ago: a “no-touch” restroom cleaning machine. Their company, Kaivac, is a Hamilton, OH-based manufacturer of cleaning machines. Hamilton is a suburb of Cincinnati, OH.

Bob Robinson, Jr.

“We were on our hands and knees, crawling around the bathroom,” recalls Bob, Jr. “It was disgusting. We said, ‘There’s got to be a better way.'” 

Through hard work and dedication, the Robinsons created the KaiVac to help solve that initial problem in public restrooms. Over the years, they grew the idea to create dedicated machines to clean kitchen floors, hallway floors, and grocery displays. Beyond its bathroom cleaning technology, it has expanded into floor cleaning and spill response machines and has 18 patents with 16 pending.

Along with growing their manufacturing capabilities, they also grew their sales capabilities. They adopted a hybrid strategy of selling through distribution and selling directly to key customers. Their direct team, under the leadership of Bob Robinson, Jr., who had taken on the role of VP of Sales, closed many enviable customers with massive deals, including Walmart, Kroger, and Target.

They realized that they needed to step up their sales professionalism after having a down year during COVID after having a record-breaking year the year before. They wanted to grow to $75 million in annual revenue within three years and a Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) of $1 billion in annual revenue within 20 years. 

Bob Jr. says Kaivac is just getting started. “At 20 to 25 years in business, you’re at an inflection point where you’ve got resources, tenure, and history and have been through ‘adolescence,'” he says. “Now is the chance to build a professionalized organization.”

They contacted New Sales Expert LLC as the nation was coming out of the global pandemic, but before all the supply chain problems had paused. New Sales Expert LLC is a fractional vice president of sales consultancy. Sean O’Shaughnessey, the CEO of New Sales Expert, is aligned with SalesXceleration and has 38 years of experience in sales and sales management.

According to Sean, “Kaivac is a joy to work with. They are the shining star of Hamilton, OH, and Butler County. They had so much raw potential when I walked in the door; all I had to do was to focus their energy and enthusiasm on working smarter and just a little harder.”

Building an organization with a heart

Bob Robinson, Sr.

Kaivac had a great culture to build on to make a great sales culture. Before Sean showed up, the company leadership had already developed their One-Page Strategic Plan and their “Why?” statement that reflects the owners’ Christian faith: “To glorify God by using KAIVAC as an instrument for Good.” 

In addition to the “Why?” statement, they had drafted an acronym called FIGS that conveys the “heart” of the company. FIGS—which appears on signs that hang on the factory floor and in break rooms—stands for 

  • F: “First shall be last, last shall be first.”
  • I: Integrity—as in “The truth shall set you free.”
  • G: Golden Rule—meaning “treat others how you want to be treated.”
  • S: Servant’s Heart, as in “We are in a race to help people.”

The company uses the first three letters of its name–KAI–to inspire the team’s thinking and actions. These letters stand for inspiring phrases such as: “Keep At It,” “Keep Always Improving,” “Keep Attempting the Impossible,” and “(creates) Kick-Ass Inventions.” 

Prioritizing net income and growth

Sean’s first change was to make a compensation plan that motivated the sales team to sell bigger deals and to sell them quickly. Kaivac implemented a 50/50 plan in concert with defined territories to keep the Key Account salespeople focused on the goal of more significant and profitable orders.

After the motivation component was in place, it was time to help the team learn how to sell big deals more repeatedly. The big deals of the past had been challenging to work on and, while very profitable, had been disruptive to close. Sean encouraged the company to read John McMahon’s book, “The Qualified Sales Leader,” and with that tome as inspiration, quickly deployed MEDDPICCC to help them qualify deals. 

MEDDPICCC by itself is not enough. The company had already licensed Salesforce, one of the highest-rated CRMs on the market, but Sean put MEDDPICCC into the various stages of the sales process to ensure that the salespeople knew all the required information about a big deal. Sean also created dashboards within Salesforce to track deal progress at the management level. The company implemented Sales Plans for Key Accounts and the Power Matrix to document the most influential people in the customer’s decision-making process.

The very first big deals that the company found after Sean started to help them also benefited from the Decision Timeline. The Decision Timeline is a tool to allow the sales team to walk through the entire decision-making process of the customer to understand all of the steps required to make a significant investment decision. It allowed frank and honest conversations to take place with the prospect as the team worked to close the largest deal in the company’s history to date.

Time to run on their own

Mike Perazzo, Allen Randolph, Bob Robinson, Jr., and Nick Wehby after passing their Certified Sales Leader exams.

As with most of the assignments with New Sales Expert, LLC, the goal is to allow the company to run independently. Bob Robinson Jr. was the company’s VP of Sales. Still, he needed to shed those responsibilities to help run the entire company. To finish the transition, Bob and three of his leaders took SalesXceleration‘s Certified Sales Leadership course delivered by Sean O’Shaughnessey. 

The Certified Sales Leader (CSL) designation is the country’s most comprehensive sales leadership certification program offered. CSL leadership training and certification will prepare you with the analytical, tactical, and strategic sales management skills needed to drive revenue growth now…and into the future. CSL training expands the skill set of a Sales Manager by providing coaching, techniques, and tools to lead a successful sales team. 

All four Kaivac leaders passed the CSL test. One of them, Mike Perazzo, was tagged to take over as Executive Vice President of Sales. According to Mike, “Sean is a master coach for helping shape sales process and methodology. Following his methods will help grow sales faster, transactionally, and strategically. Often a couple of pieces of the puzzle are missing, and Sean helps quickly identify them.

You have everything to gain by having Sean look at your current approach. He is a change agent and disruptive to the status quo. Pushing the pace and flow of deals is his sweet spot. I am a better sales leader because of my time with him.”

Bob Robinson, Sr., and Jr. with their sales team celebrating a recent patent award

Sean O’Shaughnessey of New Sales Expert, LLC states, “Kaivac is a wonderful company. They have created a line of machines that gives pride to the workers in one of the toughest jobs in America – keeping things clean. They are focused on the success of their customers and their employees. They had all of the raw skills within their sales team to be a great sales organization; they only needed me to focus them on activities and techniques that allowed them to close bigger deals faster and at a higher profit level.”

“If anyone works in a clean building with clean restrooms and hard surface floors, they are either cleaning it with Kaivac technology or paying too much for that cleanliness,” Sean explains.

Revenue and profitability have grown since Sean helped Kaivac develop a higher level of sales professionalism. Recent results have shown a dramatic increase in revenue and profitability. The sales and revenue growth have allowed the entire family of Kaivac to prosper. The Robinsons have always considered their employees an extension of their family. The company’s prosperity is passed along to team members through a bonus structure for the whole company. It all fits into the spirit of Kaivac. Bob Jr. says, “Our organization was built to have heart.”

If you want to learn more about Kaivac, you can head to their website at www.Kaivac.com. You should also check out this video: The Story of Kaivac. Kaivac is on its way to outer space on revenue growth, and everyone should check out their entertaining Q3 kickoff video about the growth of Kaivac.

To learn more about Fractional Sales Management and how it can help your company, go to www.NewSales.Expert.

The Story of Kaivac