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StrategyApr 29, 2011

Are You Ready to Make a Science of Sales?

Matt Allen

Salespeople often feel threatened by process standardization; many are concerned they will lose a competitive advantage over their fellow team members. Most feel that their personal style is their key to winning deals, that generating sales is an art form unique to each individual.

Are You Ready to Make a Science of Sales?

Generating sales is more of a science than an art. Granted, there is some interpersonal skill involved in learning to read someone or in the ability to strike up a conversation. A consistent, measurable process will drive significant sales within a sales organization. Maverick rainmakers will always be maverick rainmakers. Our job is to make sure the average sales person can become an excellent sales person by giving them a process that supports their success. The process gives managers the ability to allocate resources as required. It provides a way to develop training for new employees or employees requiring skill development. In addition, processes enable organizations to retain organizational knowledge so that a lost employee does not lead to lost customers. Finally, a defined process allows for consistent assignment of leads and accounts, creating ownership within the organization of those customers and prospects. Ownership establishes a structure in which there is a single person or group accountable for increase in revenue from a particular customer. The owner can then effectively manage the customer and ensure he or she is not “overharvested.” It avoids a “tragedy of the commons” problem within the organization.