people generally hate planning. Let’s be honest, many
of us do. Still most sales people are driven by action. And
the time they perceive it will take to plan their prospecting
and account management activities is time they perceive they
simply don’t have! In fact our last survey shows that
the biggest obstacle sales people feel they have in achieving
their goals is that “they just don’t have enough
time in the day to do all the things they need to do.”
largely true. Sales teams are very busy people and the pressure
is always on for them to show immediate results. However,
one of the components to solving this “time problem”
is the act of focusing the time you do have in the right places.
That can really only be achieved by…yes you guessed
we highly recommend that as a team you create a 12-month sales
plan. For your sales team, you will need to identify your
overall goals, your sales model (do you have the right people
in the right place to meet your goals?), your sales compensation
structure (do you have the right incentives to meet your goals?),
and the needed support systems (do you have the right process,
tools, and training to meet your goals?).
we also recommend EACH SALES REP have their own plan. It is
critical to gaining the focus needed at the individual level.
Otherwise it is too easy to get distracted with the every
day chaos that is too often the life of a salesperson. The
steps to creating a Sales Plan for prospecting and account
your individual goals. Some territories require more
new business development than others and some territories
have a small number of large accounts. Still others require
an equal balance. This is the reason individual sales plans
are necessary and understanding the landscape for each territory
along with how that ties in with your individual goals is
the first step to creating a successful sales plan.
Evaluate your historical successes and failures.
This applies to both prospecting and account management and
requires a good understanding of the lead source for each
of last year’s customers, their sales history, why they
bought from you, and what their profile is (i.e. industry,
company size, need, etc.). Start your planning by doing a
comprehensive evaluation of last year’s customers and
identify “success trends” you can emulate in next
year’s plan, while throwing out the activities that
proved to be duds.
Develop a sales plan that balances its focus
and provides a clear roadmap for that sales rep—based
on the goals of that territory, the historical customer analysis,
and some new “out-of-the-box,” proactive, strategic
thinking! This plan is a living document, meant to be reviewed
weekly, or at worst monthly, and can be modified as more is