What football managers know and we don’t

Written by Mike O'Riordan

Continued from page 1

This is notrepparttar way to plan for success and it is certainly notrepparttar 127211 way you would run a football team!

We call this ‘management by hope’.

So why isrepparttar 127212 sales function not producingrepparttar 127213 return onrepparttar 127214 investment required?

We couldn’t attempt to address allrepparttar 127215 reasons but listed below are some snapshots of what we have seen over recent years.

·The detail ofrepparttar 127216 sales function is seldom understood at board level. The belief that if you simply ‘do more’ you’ll getrepparttar 127217 result is frighteningly common. No attention is paid torepparttar 127218 ‘doing more’ of ‘what’, or to ‘whom’. ·The direct sales plan is not integrated intorepparttar 127219 marketing and business plan andrepparttar 127220 disconnect is apparent. ·The sales management team is usually rewarded for achieving short-term revenue and profit goals with little measurement ofrepparttar 127221 qualitative and quantitive parts ofrepparttar 127222 job. ·Structured up-skilling and ‘leader & coaching’ programmes seldom exist. ·Apathy and low work rate withinrepparttar 127223 sales organisation. (The drumbeat is too slow.) “If Bill hits his targets and only works 4 days per week, why do I care if he plays golf every Friday?” No thought is given to how much more Bill could achieve, how this would effect his motivation and indeed, how his targets were set! ·Lack of a ‘sales culture’ and excitement ·Lack of recognition of true professional selling ·The introduction ofrepparttar 127224 internet and e-mail has given salespeople another excuse not to make contact with customers and cultivate their network

We are in danger of seeing standards of sales performance reduce year by year unless we take action now.

So what are our choices?

It’s very simple really……………Organisations can continue inrepparttar 127225 same vein and leave sales results to chance, just hoping things improve……. or they can take action.

How to change?

It is not possible to coverrepparttar 127226 whole spectrum of sales issues regularly facing Managing Directors but here are a few checklist items that you could take action on now.

·Ensure your sales propositions are articulated and clearly understood byrepparttar 127227 salespeople and your customers. Your customers must really understandrepparttar 127228 business deliverables of your products and services andrepparttar 127229 implications of choosing an alternative. ·Ensure you have a leader of sales who really understandsrepparttar 127230 sales function and allocates time to managing it properly. Forbid them to be inrepparttar 127231 office for more than a small portion ofrepparttar 127232 working week. ·Prepare open questions that establishrepparttar 127233 needs and wants of your customer and then relate their needs and wants back to your products and services. ·Prepare a ‘person specification’ template to ensurerepparttar 127234 standards for existing and new people are met. ·Be sure you know how you wantrepparttar 127235 salespeople to spend their time. ·Introduce a professional selection and retention programme for all new and existing salespeople. ·Use outside expert resources where appropriate to plugrepparttar 127236 skill, knowledge and experience gaps within your own organisation. ·Plan, manage and measurerepparttar 127237 quality and quantity of sales effort taking place and compare this withrepparttar 127238 pre-agreed required activity to achieverepparttar 127239 result. ·Immediately introduce ‘bottom up / top down’ planning to checkrepparttar 127240 credibility of your revenue plan ·Link forecasting systems torepparttar 127241 quantity, direction and quality of activity required rather than just to historical sales results ·Know and understand how your sales team stacks up againstrepparttar 127242 competition

So where do you start?

·Start with a thorough review of your sales organisation. The people, procedures, processes and current performance and highlightrepparttar 127243 areas for immediate, medium and long-term improvement. This can be done very quickly and at quite low cost ·Build a programme to manage change and improvement by introducing standards and key performance indicators and ensure salespeople and management ‘walkrepparttar 127244 talk’ ·Where necessary, for fast, expert advice, appoint an external organisation that has a proven track record of implementing change and improving sales performance.

Do not think you can fix these issues by sending your people on a training course. You’d be better off taking your team for a ‘fun day’ and you’ll change no more. Rememberrepparttar 127245 football manager who works with his team, shares his experience and improves their skills atrepparttar 127246 coaching ground? While training might be helpful inrepparttar 127247 short term, there is no substitute for getting ‘onrepparttar 127248 pitch’ to play and being observed in real live situations.

It takes a brave executive, especially a Sales Director to admit they need outside help -- but all sportspeople have a coach who is continually improving performance so why should it be different for your sales professionals?


A 10% improvement in sales performance will make a vast improvement torepparttar 127249 profitability of a company and in most companies this is very achievable. However, it does require an investment of time, and some money. It requires people to stop some ofrepparttar 127250 unproductive things they are doing now, and, instead, spend their time focused on what is truly effective and productive.

“The definition of insanity is doingrepparttar 127251 same thing over and over and expecting different results”. Benjamin Franklin

At some point, whether you’re ready or not - things must change.

A Certified Accountant with 26 years experience of selling and marketing achievement in the IT industry. Having been on the board of many companies in the U.K. including Sperry, Unisys and Acorn Computers, the last three years sees Mike running O’RIORDAN LAWES, a business consultancy working with executives to address the issues of improving business performance. Mike is a Non Executive of Quantum a leading company of sales practitioners specialising in improving sales performance.

Effective e-Sales Copy

Written by Pavel Lenshin

Continued from page 1


Guide your visitor torepparttar sole and obvious conclusion that your market offer is a worthy purchase. If your product doesn't have competitive advantages, then your research and planning onrepparttar 127210 stage of product development has failed and I would advice to stop promoting that product. It has little or no future at all. The analysis part of your sales letter is important. The buyer should not be "pitched" with your promotional advertising or selling advices, s/he must be presented with objective facts that would help her/him to seerepparttar 127211 obvious benefits of your offer. While almost all yelling about stressingrepparttar 127212 benefits not features, product/service benefits are not enough in today's world of marketing. 99.9% of businesses would tell that their market offer isrepparttar 127213 best inrepparttar 127214 whole Universe, saves thousands of dollars and months of time. You should prove that it is true withrepparttar 127215 facts and clear arguments, no marketing fluff. In this way you will much easier gain people's trust in your product.


Ask or even demand for taking an action. The action you want is a closing a sale itself or having autoresponder course, visitor's sign up may be second satisfactory action. Popular way to do this is to create a limited tme offer, stressingrepparttar 127216 importance of making a purchase right now! Guiderepparttar 127217 reader to click onrepparttar 127218 order link by remindingrepparttar 127219 product biggest strengths, mentioning an unconditional iron-clad money back guarantee that should waiverepparttar 127220 remaining doubts and then point torepparttar 127221 shortage of time for decision making process. Explain, if needed,repparttar 127222 ordering process in details, as it may be disappointing to lose sales due torepparttar 127223 buyer confusing caused by your complicated ordering process.


Use it as a summary of your sub-headlines. "PostScript" is also very often scanned for "relevancy". Describe with its helprepparttar 127224 main benefits of your offer; repeatrepparttar 127225 guarantee terms and/or other.

Sales copywriting advices

* Identify yourself with your potential buyer. Write your copy fromrepparttar 127226 customer's point of view. What does s/he want, feel and think? Your copy should be addressed to personality inrepparttar 127227 clear to your target market way. * Try to be cheerful, positive and optimistic. People are attracted by joy and positive mood. They also want to feel like you, so they associate your positive attitude with your product. Atrepparttar 127228 best your writing style should contain an intrigue, provoke curiosity and excitement. * Don't forget to address to people's emotions. Textbooks are boring to read because they don't have a bit of author's emotions. Your task is to make your prospect feelrepparttar 127229 way you do. * Provoke curiosity to read further. Visitors should be kept excited while they read your sales copy. Excitement may playrepparttar 127230 role of final buying or non-buying verdict. * Refer to losses reader will suffer if s/he turns your offer down. It is proved that people are afraid of losingrepparttar 127231 opportunity. Everyone wants to be with winners, not losers. You can take advantage of it. * Try to avoid any assumptions about visitors' origin, religious identity etc. Your claim or joke may be faulty interpreted and you will convert "almost a client" to "an irritated visitor". Even if you deliberately want to select some particular group of people, it is better to clearly state fromrepparttar 127232 very beginning. * The final advice is to be honest, even atrepparttar 127233 sacrifice ofrepparttar 127234 correct marketing strategy. My own viewpoint is that it is better to have 7 sales than 10, but enjoy clear conscious.

Pavel Lenshin is a publisher of NET Business Magazine, professional web-developer and CEO of: - http://ASBONE.com/ - informational portal and provider of discounted internet services for entrepreneurs, including internet access, web-design and hosting; - http://InfoAlchemist.com/ - a must-have business library.

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