At the heart of it, most effective CEOs understand the value of eliminating waste and implementing lean process improvement. Many, however, do not apply the same thinking to their sales departments.
As Ram Trichur, Maria Valdivieso de Uster, and Jon Vander Ark indicate in their HBR Blog Post CEOs Need to Get Serious About Sales, “many CEOs don’t want to change the way their sales force operates for fear of killing the golden goose.”
But, they argue, “Cutting cost does not mean cutting revenue. In manufacturing, lean both cuts cost and increases effectiveness… The same thinking applies to sales.”
For anyone who doesn’t believe that this thinking applies to sales, it begs the question, “How golden is that goose really?” And, with better systems and processes in place, could it start laying more golden eggs and/or cut costs? Probably. The fact is that “lean,” which at its most basic is the elimination of waste, can be applied to sales in multiple ways – from streamlining individual processes to revamping an entire sales structure.
Often business leaders try to avoid spending on sales systems because they think it is cheaper to go without. In reality, the opposite is true. Not having the proper systems produces more inefficiency which in turn costs the organization more due to the resulting lack of training, lack of focus, lack of accountability, employee churn and more.
Segment Sales Roles for Increased Efficiency
While individual process improvements may vary from one organization to the next, at NuGrowth, we feel very strongly that segmenting sales roles is an important step towards increasing efficiency and reducing waste in a sales operation.
As we stated in our recent article, Managing a Sales Territory: Lessons from Baseball, to maximize efficiency, a growth company – particularly one with a recurring revenue product or service – should have three separate areas of proficiency within their sales department: hunters, closers and farmers.
- Hunters (a.k.a. New Business Development Specialists) - Broad territory management: uncovering opportunities, acting as brand steward, building assets and developing relationships.
- Closers (a.k.a. Opportunity Management Specialists) - Specialize in Pipeline Management – Turning warm leads into closed sales.
- Farmers (a.k.a. Account Management Specialists) - Nurturing and growing the customer base.
Not only do the different roles require different skillsets and different levels of compensation, they also each require a dedicated amount of time and effort to do them properly. Separating these roles will ensure that adequate time is spent in each portion of the sales pipeline, increase customer retention and growth and create a more consistent flow of new business.
For organizations lacking the personnel or the infrastructure necessary to adequately break down and manage these roles, hiring a virtual sales organization like NuGrowth to hunt for you is a viable alternative tobuilding from within or hiring additional sales staff. The systems are already there. The infrastructure is already there. The sales culture is already there. And the price is right. For roughly the same cost as a VP of sales, NuGrowth Solutions can provide a complete package including unparalleled sales leadership, dedicated inside sales representatives, an effective demand generation team and proven territory management systems. Not only that, we’re built to scale quickly.
If you are ready to build a lean sales machine that starts cranking out golden eggs but don’t have the infrastructure and the personnel in place to do so, chances are you could benefit from working with a virtual sales team that has sales systems down to a science.
NuGrowth Solutions is that team. We bring the people, the processes and the systems to take your business to new heights in customer acquisition.Passionate about helping our clients grow, we go into each engagement with the understanding that the success of our partnership is based on trust and mutual respect. While we own the business development processes, our clients own the client relationships. Team unity is critical.
If you are interested in working with a partner you can trust to grow please give us acall at 800-966-3051.