As a sales manager, you know that it takes all kinds, from hard workers, to relationship builders to lone wolfs. Having different personalities on your team with various strengths ensures that you can connect with anyone and close any deal.
But then there are those reps who consistently book the most meetings, develop the deepest prospect relationships and close deals the fastest. And of course, there are those reps who, try as they might, just can’t seem to drive conversion at one stage or another and struggle to convince potential customers to sign on the dotted line.
While your top performing reps may seem to have “the magic touch,” the reality is that they are using certain strategies and taking specific actions that can in fact be replicated or built upon by other reps. This concept is at the heart of sales science: that sales can and should be quantifiable, repeatable and scalable.
Here are a couple tips to help you close the performance gap in your team by amplifying your top sales performers.
Measure and Compare Performance Segments
What are top performing reps doing that can be emulated by underperforming team members and reinforced in the training process? One key way to uncover these insights it to segment deals managed by under versus top performing reps, and run these respective segments through your Sales Formula.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Sales Formula, it is an adaptable equation that enables businesses to consistently and accurately measure their processes and pipelines across the key conversion points needed to turn a lead into a closed deal. The baseline equation and the definitions of each of its variables can be seen below.
Running these two segments through your Sales Formula will reveal the pipeline stages where the largest variabilities between these two groups lie. By effectively identifying where underperformers are struggling the most, you can then start digging into specific process steps or communication strategies where top performers are leading the pack, and work on helping the rest of the team adopt these practices.
For help creating your own personal Sales Formula so that you can complete this exercise, download this free template from our up-and-coming Sales Operations eCourse.
Pinpoint Key Strengths and Weaknesses
This same process can be used to dig deeper into the specific strengths and weaknesses among your sales team. While your top performers obviously have great strength in key areas, you may be surprised to find that your underperformers actually excel at undervalued or underutilized aspects of your sales funnel.
To find out what these might be, it’s time to segment your deals by various dimensions, and then run these segments through the Sales Formula. Dimensions refer to all of the variables that make up a sale, like company vertical, time to first action, rep experience, lead source, price and so much more. Taking the time to examine your deals by dimension will unveil which of these levers you can pull to impact performance. And the more dimensions you factor into your analysis, the more granular your insights will be.
To pinpoint certain strengths and weaknesses in your team, try first segmenting your deals by the dimension of industry. Then, further segment these deals by the dimension of sales rep. In doing so, you may discover that certain reps have a penchant for closing deals from particular verticals.
While top performers may rock at closing deals from your company’s key verticals, maybe you discover that an “underperformer” is actually skilled at developing relationships with customers from less popular verticals. In this case, you can start routing all deals from this vertical to this rep, and ask her to explore how your business might expand or enhance its presence and value offering in this industry.
This same approach can be followed for deals from particular lead sources, with particular contact titles and more. The ability to identify and leverage the strengths of each rep on your team is the mark of a great sales manager.
You Can’t Amplify Art
The art of sales can’t be amplified. The ability to learn from your top sales performers requires a scientific sales perspective. To learn more, check out this free eBook: From Art to Science: 5 Steps to Predictable Sales Growth.