Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Value Of The Sales Team Assessment To The Sales Executive

Writen by Bill Truax

The Sales Team Assessment is almost an unheard of event for most companies. Primarily because most consulting firms don't do it. They may provide some form of critique of the sales teams' effectiveness while reviewing the companies overall operations, but a real Sales Team Assessment is rare.

A Sales Team Assessment can be of two varieties. The first is to get a broad overview of the workings of your sales team in light of the objectives and resources of the company. This also includes an analysis of the skill bases required and their level of achievement in the field.

The second type of assessment is for a specific reason or goal. For example, you may be introducing a new product line and want to assure that your sales team is ready to hit the ground running.

You may be entering a new market and want to get your field force "fine tuned" for the event. If you have a semi-mature product or sales force, it may have been years since some of your sales team have done any prospecting. You may have many senior level sales professionals whose prospecting skills have atrophied! No one's fault, just a fact. With the need for opening new markets and gaining new customers, this could become a real problem.

Or maybe it is just about time someone other than you looked at your sales team's operations.

By having this assessment conducted by an outside firm you can get an impartial and independent view of how your objectives are being understood and what, if anything, needs to be done in order to assure goal achievement. You also get the benefits of a different perspective.

Here is how we conduct the 5 steps of a Sales Team Assessment:

The first step is my meeting with the sales executive to establish goals for and the format of this assessment.

Second, I meet with the sales professionals and managers to let them know what I will be doing and why, the goals of the assessment, and how it will be conducted.

Third, I go into the field make calls, and work with the individual sales professionals and managers. One of my objectives is to compare the goals of the company with the day to day activities of the sales team.

Fourth, at pre-selected times I meet with the sales executive to review the findings prior to finishing the report.

Fifth, the final report is presented and discussed along with specific recommendations.

Now for those of you who are familiar with large consulting firms and how they conduct overall operations audits, the Sales Team Assessment may seem somewhat trivial. However, most sales executives would be surprised at how many of their sales professionals have dramatically different goals from those of the company resulting in a myriad of inefficiencies.

If the same situation existed in manufacturing, it would be corrected immediately. Sometimes sales takes a little longer to act. The Sales Team Assessment can let senior management know where adjustments need to be made.

Fine tuning of the sales team can have dramatically positive results especially when you have a need to accomplish some short term goals like opening new territories or markets or penetrating existing customers more effectively.

The small amount of money spent on a Sales Team Assessment even when followed by specific skill based training can provide the results you are seeking from an expensive marketing campaign or new product introduction.

It is hard to believe that so much money can be spent on bringing a new product to market without providing some specific effort assuring that the sales team is fully geared up for the event. But many companies do just that and then wonder why they don't have the results they had expected.

So now you can see the value of the Sales Team Assessment to the Sales Executive.

Sell Well and OftenTM

Bill Truax 800-253-1214

© Copyright 2006 WJ Truax

Bill Truax is a Sales Management and Field Operations Consultant living in Cleveland, Oh. He conducts Sales Team Assessments, trains Managers and Leaders, and Field Sales Professionals both in the field and in workshops. He has written 3 books on Prospecting and Making Cold Calls and conducts a variety of skill based seminars, workshops, and train the trainer programs. Visit his website at

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