Sales reps are constantly trying to close more deals and achiever their quota. However, is it fair to define sales performance based on a sales rep’s achieved sales goal?
Let’s take an example of the recent world pandemic which turned our lives upside down. Due to the onset of the pandemic, 40% of companies failed to meet their sales goals in 2020.
Now, this data simply represents how Covid-19 affected everyone’s businesses. So, you can’t say that the sales rep had underperformed just because the sales goal wasn’t achieved. In fact, the company’s sales reps might have put more effort into achieving their sales goals considering how all the companies were affected.
To gain insight into this myth, I reached out to a few experts and asked for their inputs on this myth.
1. Christian Velitchkov
Co-Founder, Twiz LLC
The success of sales depends a lot on the sales goal number achieved, but that is not the sole parameter to judge the success of a sales team. Sales are not just selling the products today and achieving the sales target, it’s about maintaining relations with your customer.
Even after selling the product the process of sales doesn’t end, you have to entertain customer queries and complaints and provide solutions to their problems. Many times you cannot make a sale, but you develop a relationship with the party, which can turn into a sale someday. Ensuring such friendly relations will make the sales team successful.
2. Georgi Todorov
This myth is by those people who believe that they need to make 100 calls in order to get 5 leads and make 1 sale. That’s lousy thinking.
I used to cold call businesses trying to sell them SEO services back in 2013-2014. I failed tremendously despite the fact I was making 30 calls a day.
A couple of years later I am not even trying to sell but I am getting new leads on a daily basis. And I make 0 calls. My performance is much better. Focus on performance, not on numbers.
3. Nick Shackelford
Managing Partner, Structured Agency
A successful sales performance is measured by the outcome of short and long-term goals. The actual technique employed by a sales team may not necessarily be reflective of its results. Sometimes the issues creating lower numbers can be mismarketing and the lack of a cohesive strategy to target the right consumers who match your “product/market” fit.
4. David Fernandez
CEO, Captial Dealer Solutions
Although achieved sales goal number is a part of measuring sales performance, it does not define a sales member’s performance alone.
You can use different performance metrics to measure sales performance, such as the basis on average deal size. If you look at this area on a monthly or quarterly basis, you can get an overview of the contracts held by your sales team member.
Generally, if your team is trying to move up the market, you will be eager to increase the average deal size. If your team is trying to land SMB customers, you will want the number to go down, increasing overall revenues and number of customers.
In addition to this, you should look for your salespeople with a significantly smaller average deal size, so you should know which team member you need to motivate into working hard and improving their sales or team performance.
5. Chris Riley
CEO and Co-founder, USA Rx
“Sales performance is defined by the achieved sales goal number.” This is definitely a myth. So much goes into measuring the performance of a particular sales strategy, that actually achieving the end goals is not the only concern.
What is your ROI? How are your conversions? Are your site visitors showing a steady increase? While everyone wants to reach their goals, the journey on how they get there is just as important. Plus, paying attention to this data can help your team decide when to pivot, or when they’re running the perfect campaign.
6. Hector Gutierrez
It’s not quite as simple as that. A sale is a sale, but one sale doesn’t mean the customer is dedicated to the brand in the long run. How that relationship evolves into a sustained one is much more key than the sale itself. If someone buys our product and never buys again, we want to know everything we can about why — and use that feedback to improve the experience as much as we can. Looking at only numbers means missing the bigger picture.
7. Khari Washington
Owner, 1st United Realty & Mortgage
Sales goal numbers are an important metric, but the metric doesn’t work for every industry. If a company needs high customer retention to be profitable, customer satisfaction could be just as important as the number of sales. The sales goal number is not a one size fits all solution to tracking success.
8. Matthew Paxton
When we look at good results, it is easy to assume that it was caused by good performance. We don’t think about how much luck was involved. For obvious reasons. First, we don’t want to offend the person who worked hard. Second, it is hard to quantify luck.
Maybe the successful person was lucky enough to talk to prospects that are going to buy anyway. Regardless of their performance.
To judge a good salesman, I think it is important to look at their performance over a longer period of time. If they are consistent with their result, it is hard to assert that they are lucky.
Making sales isn’t easy; you need to constantly stay in touch with the prospect and guide them through the extensive sales process. So, when it comes to measuring sales performance, the efforts of sales reps need to consider if you really want to know how they’re performing.
Moreover, find out how they have performed during their entire course of work, not just a specific duration to get a clear picture.