Have you ever experienced a sales slump?Or just not achieved the results that you thought you should have? If you have been selling for at least 4-5 years, I guarantee you have had some tough months, or even a difficult sales year.
Success in selling requires many skills, attitudes, abilities and personal values.
When a salesperson experiences a down cycle in his success, it is impossible to look at just one single area in order to determine where the problem is.
For example, if you are having trouble closing sales, is it because you are poor at closing skills, or could it be that you may be trying to close poor prospects? Determining where the problem is, in a sliding sales career or poor month, requires information.
Information about sales ratios, actual numbers, trends, and comparisons.
It is difficult to take corrective action if you are not aware of what is the cause of the problem or what actions to take.
Just working harder or longer hours calling on poor prospects is not going to have a significant positive impact on your overall results.
It will be just more of the same.
One of the common denominators (there are many) among top salespeople is their ruthless evaluation of: activities, behaviors, results and progress toward goals.
Most poor salespeople don't take/have the time to keep accurate records.
Many sales organizations require call reports, but those reports are just, in many cases, busywork.
They provide little, if any, value for the salesperson or the sales manager on where current or potential sales problems are, or their causes.
They just tend to require whom did you see and what did you sell.
This is not enough information - if you are going to reach the stars as a salesperson.
In my best selling book, Soft Sell, the last chapter is devoted to which records to keep, how to evaluate them, and how to forecast the future based on previous and current activity types and amounts.
I cannot summarize that chapter in this week's tip.
All I can hope to do is convince you - if you are failing or doing poorly - you don't really know why.
And if you are consistently beating your goals, I will bet you have formed the habit of keeping good numbers and evaluating them on a regular basis to determine where changes in behavior are needed or new skills are required.
If you have not read Soft Sell, I suggest you order it today (unless the $10 will break your bank) - if only for the tips and techniques in chapter 12 on Keeping Good Sales Records.