It’s indisputable that collaboration challenges exist in business today. At Esna, we most often see this in the sales world, where evolving 21st century sales strategies crash head on with the ineffective processes of yesteryear. Where sales teams once focused a great deal on customer acquisitions, they have now directed their efforts toward retaining them. Therefore, instead of just selling a product, a sales person needs to sell a relationship. Rather than follow up with a customer, sales leaders need to ensure that those relationships are being successfully maintained.
When it comes to the challenges that sales managers face, it’s as if they’re driving down a narrow road full of deepening potholes. Why? We discovered that 56 percent of sales managers today feel that finding good leads is almost impossible, and 41 percent feel that it’s more difficult than ever to correctly report sales information, according to a recent study conducted by InsideSales.com.
Anyone involved in the sales process knows that it’s rough out there. Whether you’re a salesleader trying to give your team a push or a top performing rep looking to amplify your best practices, it’s clear that something needs to change so that sales teams can reach their peak. In our experience we’ve found quite a few top challenges faced by sales teams today.
Do any of these apply to you?
- Connecting with Leads
That same study shows that only 27 percent of Web-based sales leads ever get contacted by a sales rep – that’s a lot of lead generation and marketing effort going right down the drain. [TWEET THIS] It’s important to amplify the sales experience by accelerating productivity for both remote and in-house workers; regardless of the geographic disparity of your team, your team should be connecting with leads and locking in sales.
- Communication Problems
On average, 48 percent of salespeople never follow up with a prospect, and only two percent of sales are made on the first contact. [TWEET THIS] Needless to say, a lot of this probably has to do with a lack of efficient communication. Nevertheless, deals need to be completed faster and more connections with your partners and customers need to be made more efficiently. Barriers to communication can keep you – and your profit – in the dark.
- Inaccurate Lead Information
Sure, you can follow up with that lead, but did you get the necessary information? If not, then you’re likely part of the 41 percent of sales managers who ranked correct information reporting as one of the top three challenges faced by sales teams today. [TWEET THIS] Perhaps you’re not following a sound selling process or building upon your sales reps’ skill sets. Or, maybe there’s a vital element missing when it comes to sharing information between your team and your customers. Either way, this is a problem that cannot persist.
- Lack of Product Knowledge
A great deal of making sure that your sales teams’ product knowledge is up to par includes hiring the right people; however, the time will always come when your team needs a product refresher. But what if your team is spread out across multiple areas and time zones? How can you get them all together to review a new product or offering or go over new selling strategies? If you’re a sales manager overseeing such a team, this disconnectivity is undoubtedly challenging.
- Training Sales Reps
Perhaps most important for the sales manager is ensuring that his or her team is properly trained. Consider if your agents are sharing knowledge and collaborating with customers rather than pushing the buyer to the point of breakability. Training your sales representatives should include leadership development as well as providing them with a deep understanding of the technology and tools available to get the job best done.
The challenges that prevent sales teams from accelerating connections, enhancing productivity and boosting profit are simply unacceptable. So, what can be provided to help them better succeed? The answer is simple: Advanced collaboration technology.
Not sure how your sales team could leverage collaboration technology?
Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with part two of this series, where we’ll discuss exactly what it is that sales organizations can do with collaborative technology. Those potholes in the road will be in your rearview mirror before you know it.