The Sales environment has changed. Whether you are selling software, legal services, niche engineering systems, distribution services, and certainly in almost any type of B2B world, life has changed. The old world of selling pre 2002 has changed dramatically and evolved into a new collaborative venture. We have moved from an interruption based persuasive model to an attention seeking trust model. The new model demands not just marketing content but remarkable marketing content. This generates sales leads that require a new mindset, one that serves first and sells second. Sales professionals require to be insightful investigative journalists asking the right questions. So how does this change the role of the Sales Manager? It’s all in the questions the manager now needs to ask of their team members:
- What has happened to your sales leads/suspects over the last 7 days? Show me progress over that period.
- What are your monthly trend lines regarding Sales leads given to you from marketing?
- What is your weighted pipeline in $ (£, ¥ etc.) for the current quarter relative to your pipeline?
- How many more deals and at what average value do you need to close to hit your target?
- What product/services do you struggle to sell and why?
- What products do you find easy to sell and why?
- What is your ratio of proposals to closed business?
- How many case studies have you generated for publication since the start of the year?
- How many blog posts have you contributed to since the start of the year?
And for each live deal:
- Tell me specifically for this prospect how are we improving the life of your sponsor (the actual human being you are talking to)?
- Who are the influencers that can affect the decision to buy from us?
- When does the prospect expect to be operational, up and running and fully trained, enjoying the dream?
- What is the ROI% on your prospect’s investment in us?
- What problems did the sponsor think they had or did not have and what problems do they now accept need addressing?
- Why is the issue you are solving a priority?
- What is the main reason this deal will not happen?
- What is the main reason the deal will happen?
- What is the clear next step by whom and by when?