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A sales manager is only as good as the team he or she is managing. One of the most fatal errors a manager can make is taking on the entire responsibility of your team. With so much riding on you and your business, it may be tempting to take on all the difficult tasks for your sales representatives. However, this good deed is only preventing your team from growing and making independent decisions on their own. Meanwhile, you’re being distracted from your actual priorities.
This salty pickle of a problem is what often gets the best of sales managers. It also leads to sales managers failing to implement a system that could regulate sales growth for your business. However, businesses are starting to wise up and address this Achilles’s heel head on.
Take Pyramid Analytics, for example, which uses the Sales Performance Manager to help sales managers get a handle on management issues and close more business deals.
David Brierley, VP EMEA and APJ at Pyramid and one of the panelists in our upcoming webinar “The Secret to Maximizing Sales Performance”, shared his thoughts on the role of sales manger and how he deals with the challenges.
“Typically when you scan an organization, it’s filled with danger,” Brierley says. “You’re bringing new people on — new people that don’t understand the culture of the organization or your value proposition. You have numbers to hit, but at the same time you need to onboard carefully.” He explains that the challenge of looking for efficiencies with staffing changes and a range of tools that may not be up to the task.
“The problem is these applications are quite disparate, so you’re relying on lot of people integrating and keeping things updated using manual processes,” says Brierley. “In theory it works, but in actual practice it doesn’t. It breaks down.”
“Then what you find is that these sales managers tend to spend too much time looking at things like Excel. And, of course, that diminishes the value of coaching they could provide to their front line sales organization. So, it’s a vicious circle. We’re not looking for technology, per se. We’re looking at technology that can get out of the way.”
Here’s where the Sales Performance Manager comes in for Pyramid. Studies have shown that most business deals won’t close on the expected date, or even at all. So, if you’re pinning everything you have on a certain deal and it fails to go through, then it could seriously ruin your business plan for the future. It’s best to identify early where things may be going off the rails rather than come to the realization too late.
“SPM serves as an early warning system for us. It’s a tool that helps us minimize risk, manage exceptions, display warning signs, and provide complete accuracy through and through,” Brierley says. “You want to manage exceptions rather than all opportunities — and you want to drive forecast accuracy. SPM can help me gain insights into my pipeline, essentially functioning as an ‘early warning system to identify deals that are behaving unusually or posing a risk to my revenue goals, jumping on it early, all in a transparent way.”
Brierley discussed other benefits to SPM, such as removing subjectivity from the sales pipeline and replacing it with objectivity. However, one valuable asset was freeing sales managers from being the “middlemen” with their representatives.
“By delivering best practices to improve salesperson execution, managers are freed to focus on meeting quotas and other areas of importance,” Brierley says. “This, in turn, allows a manager to take on larger teams, driving efficiencies and saving valuable headcount.”
All of which will allow your business to naturally expand, without worrying over an ill-prepared staff to take on the task.
Join this webinar and get more valuable advice about how to better manage your teams of sales reps and make more informed decisions that will drive up sales to meet and exceed company goals.
Don’t miss out!
In this webinar, you’ll:
- Learn the secrets of unlocking sales insights to make better decisions
- Spend more time providing leadership & accountability
- Drive increased productivity & performance
Mike Weinberg, Consultant, The New Business Sales Coach
Nancy Nardin, President, Smart Selling Tools
David Brierley, VP EMEA & APJ, Pyramid Analytics
Donal Daly, CEO, The TAS Group
Wendy Schuchart, Analyst, VentureBeat
This webinar is sponsored by The TAS Group.