If you surveyed companies today and asked them if they follow an established and formal sales process, what do you think their answer would be? Those who can answer yes are well in the minority.
The Objective Management Group (OMG), a sales development company, compiled statistics that show 91% of the more than 500,000 salespeople assessed by them did not have or follow a structured sales process.
Now! The million-dollar question. Do you have one?
A sales process is basically a customized procedure including the sequence of steps, to-do’s, milestones and goals that must be achieved during your sales cycle, leading to the acquisition of a new client. And, your sales cycle is one of four – and only four – cycles in your business that impacts cash flow. The other cycles are 1) making or preparing to deliver your product/service, 2) delivering your product or service, and 3) billing and collections.
Your sales cycle can be improved, and therefore produce greater cash flow, with one or all of these strategies:
- Shorten your cycle (such as reducing steps and becoming more efficient)
- Eliminate mistakes (such as insuring everyone follows your sales process)
- Change your business model – (such as revising your sales process to be more effective)
My Core Message: The key to a cash-producing sales cycle is your sales process itself. Here are some questions created by Dave Kurlan, founder of OMG, for you to answer in order to evaluate your sales force and your sales process. Use them to determine which strategies you can use for improvement in your company.
- Is there a sales process?
- Has it been customized (to your company and market)?
- Has it been formalized and structured?
- Has it been optimized?
- Is it legacy?
- Does everyone follow it?
- Does everyone speak the language of your process?
- Is it referenced as a context for coaching sessions?
- Can your salespeople identify where they are by simply naming a step?
- Is it integrated into your CRM software?
- Is it integrated with your pipeline?
- Is the pipeline routinely reviewed and restaged according to the criteria for each step of the process?
If you can answer yes to these questions, you are in a position to shorten your sales cycle and significantly increase cash flow.
Contact me to discuss how to apply these questions and strategies to your sales process.
Copyright 2016-2018 David Paul Carter. All rights reserved. 12 Questions sourced from a blog posting by Dave Kurlan. He is founder of OMG, a top-rated speaker, best-selling author, sales thought leader and highly regarded sales development expert.