11.11.11 The 11 Keys to Sales Strategy Success
Today marks an interesting date on our calendar. 11/11/11 has drawn interest because it is the second to last time a series of consecutive numbers will appear on the calendar during this century. Seeing as 01/01/2101 is still quite a ways off, next year’s occurrence of 12/12/12 will probably be the last time we see this during our lifetime.
Believe it or not, while everyone is dwelling on the number 11 today, it also has significance in terms of sales strategy. More namely, in the Sales Force Assessment Framework.
The Sales Force Assessment Framework
4 steps + 7 Drivers= 11= Sales Force Assessment Framework
What does this have to do with Sales Strategy? The month of November will have many VP of Sales working on their 2012 Sales Strategy, Budget and Plan. This Framework should be used as a tool to help create a sound strategy for your company moving forward.
The Sales Force Framework was created through the direct observation, learning’s, best practices, and successes of hundreds of high performing organizations. The strategy of seeing 11:11 on the clock on 11/11/11 and making a wish won’t get it done, I’m afraid. Instead, use the Framework to measure, calibrate, and create a winning plan for 2012.
It’s a 3 step process:
1. Take a look at each of the respective 7 Drivers in the Assessment Framework. Ask yourself these questions about each:
- Do I have an adequate depth of knowledge?
- Are there documented processes and systems?
- Does this Driver align and connect to the other Drivers within the overall framework?
- Circle the Drivers where you have a need, or found a hole
2. After completing Section 1 of the Assessment, you now know which Drivers are incomplete or missing. Step 2 is determining the appropriate sequencing. The biggest problem and most consistent mistake leaders make, is failing to identify the proper sequence. If you’ve got holes or misalignment at the top, it's hard to tie all the other pieces together below. Each piece is dependent and built upon the one above.
This example shows us that we first need to ”Develop Sales Strategy (Step 1) before we can "Build Infrastructure" (Step 4). It would be a mistake to focus on "Build Infrastructure" when you have not clearly defined the "Ideal Customer Profile", which occurs in the "Account Segmentation" portion of Step 1. Section 2 of this Assessment will be determinative as to the Step you need to begin with, depending on which Drivers are yet to be aligned:
- Develop Sales Strategy
- Develop Go to Market Plan
- Design Sales Force
- Build Infrastructure
3. You now have identified which Step requires your focus. Next is to make sure that your 2012 strategy is building towards filling the gaps that are present. Each Driver has a direct tie and impact to the surrounding Drivers, and subsequent Steps. Let’s go back to our previous example wherein the gap exists in "Account Segmentation". Once the "Ideal Customer Profile" is determined it will be critical to make sure that the "Lead Management" Driver is evaluated. Why? "Lead Management" is responsible for taking the "Ideal Customer Profile" and generating Demand. If you’ve moved the customer target, the "Lead Management" team needs to adjust accordingly.
Leveraging the 4 Step process and each of the corresponding 7 Drivers allows the correct sequencing to be built. If you haphazardly jump around the Framework, randomly picking Steps and Drivers, you’ll only guarantee ineffectiveness, inefficiency, and thrashing. Share how you’ve leveraged the Sales Force Assessment to create a winning 2012 plan. Are you having trouble assessing your own Sales Force Framework? Reach out to SBI for a free Assessment and create a world class Sales Strategy for your company.
Join us on Thursday, December 9, 1:00 P.M. Central for a Webinar: "Instant Improvements for Segmenting Your Accounts"- How to Determine the Real Potential of Your Territory.
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