Monday, December 17, 2012
As a sales leader I am often besieged by my direct reports about the number of calls/appointments/activities they are expected to complete on a daily/weekly basis. I have even read sales playbooks that out line exact metrics, as well as lively debate in a group on LinkedIn.
The number is too high, the number is unrealistic, is all I want that “number” or do I want “real” data/activities. The real question sales people are asking is “Do you want quality or do you want quantity?”
My answer has always been the same – “Yes!”
The issue should not be how many, it should be how many done well. I want quality and I want quantity, in fact I require them both. What has always perplexed me is why sales people tend to look at this as an “either/or” problem while I look at is as the perfect “and” situation, since quality and quantity are not mutually exclusive.
Activities do drive results, no one can argue that. For sales to happen, sales people have to do something and calling on clients is one of those things. Better quality activities will drive better results, I think it is equally difficult to argue against this point also.
Think of sales calls as golf strokes (there will have to be a separate blog post on this idea soon), the fewer the number of calls to get the sale the better your score. Why? Because better calls mean that sales people can make more calls with more clients selling more dollars making more commissions. Quality should never replace quantity, it should magnify it!
How many sales calls are needed to close a sale? More than one? Less than five? There are a lot of variables, I’m interested to hear your thoughts so feel free to leave a comment.