By David Kurlan and an introduction by Hunter Byington
What is Sales Force Development all about? Sales training? Coaching? Sales Force Automation? Sales Selection? Sales Assessments? Compensation? Incentives? Performance? Sales Management Effectiveness? Mapping the Sales Process? Documentation? Having a Play Book? More?
The other day I was talking with a good friend in the business, David Kurlan, a noted speaker and sales trainer about just what is Sales Development?
He started with noting that what we mentioned above is what most people think of, there are a lot more items to consider. He said its primary focus is the company’s strategies for growing sales, whether they are the right strategies, whether sales management is aligned on those strategies, and whether the sales force can execute those strategies.
Dave noted that a sales force evaluation that looks at the people, systems, processes and strategies, provides the answer to those questions and a whole lot more. In addition to identifying the issues to be addressed, it can provide the lion’s share of the content for a sales plan.
Development begins with mapping out an effective sales process. That is followed by the development of the sales management team so they can support the salespeople who must execute the strategies.
In most companies, a third of the sales force is less than desirable so an improved sales selection process comes next, utilized to hire salespeople who will more effectively execute the strategies.
Sales Training, the most popular component of an integrated sales force development initiative, is used to develop those salespeople who can’t yet execute the strategies. Sales managers, a few months ahead of the curve, should now be able to effectively coach their salespeople to reinforce the training.
Compensation and Incentives can be used to target the behaviors and activities that must change, influencing salespeople to execute the strategies. Then, the appropriate systems and processes must be put in place to support the sales force’s
Hunter Byington is the Principal at Closer Consulting, a Midwest based Sales consulting firm serving clients throughout the United States.