December 22, 2016

Sales Performance Optimization: It’s All in the Data

A CSO Insight report, “Sales Performance Optimization – 2015 Key Trends Analysis,” revealed some alarming data around sales ineffectiveness. It showed a global sales failure rate of a staggering 41.9%. That number is terrible and if you’re a sales manager, it’s unacceptable.

While that 41.9% is shocking, what really stands out are the reasons the report cites for this failure:
Sales People Don’t Master the Fundamentals
Sales Managers Don’t Hold Salespeople Accountable
Executive Leadership Has No Visibility to Clearly Understand Why Their Teams are Failing

I agree with these points, and they all have one thing in common—they are a result of poor management. Here at Gryphon, we preach the importance of sales training and on-boarding, both of which are critical to sales effectiveness. We also focus heavily that in order to optimize sales performance, managers need visibility into activity data to truly understand the “why”. This is in direct reference to the third bullet above.

Executive leadership relies on sales pipelines to determine how their teams are performing, and to properly anticipate and forecast. But what happens when forecasted deals don’t pan out? And if sales is consistently missing the forecasted pipeline, how can executives find the reasons why?

Sales leaders can bridge this visibility gap by managing sales based on activity and accurate data. Whether you work at a large call center or a company with dispersed offices, sales intelligence and analytics helps leaders gain visibility into reps’ activity to better manage sales performance and accurately forecast. If sales reps make calls remotely or from a centralized location, new sales technology is empowering organizations to capture and analyze sales activity data, regardless of agent/rep phone or device, and eliminate manual documentation processes to create reliable, actionable sales data—data both sales leaders and the executive suite can refer to and rely on for accurate forecasting.

It’s all in the data. The more managers have access to and visibility into the activity data of reps, the better they can manage and ultimately improve the effectiveness of their teams. And hopefully, as data continues to become the key to sales success, that 41.9% will plummet in no time.