Webcast

Webcast

Research Update: Assessing Sales Tools

May 27, 2016

 

Join us for our latest research insights on assessing sales tools. Over the past two decades, technology-driven innovation has profoundly changed selling and sales organizations. PCs and smart mobile devices are now essential selling tools; CRM platforms are virtually ubiquitous; and new applications appear daily to help automate, enhance, or speed up how salespeople sell. 

 

In the webcast, we provided a preliminary look at research findings before we finalized results in a comprehensive report, and provided commentary on the research implications and participated in an audience discussion. 

 

High-level questions addressed in the study include: 

  • How do business-to-business firms identify, assess, and select new technology used by the sales organization? 
  • How do firms approach technology investment decisions? 
  • Which technologies have the greatest impact? 
  • Where does sales leadership realize the return from sales technology?

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Webcast

Webcast

Enhancing Sales Operations’ Role as the Sales Force’s Change Agent

May 27, 2016

 

Sales operations functions serve a vital, strategic role in sales organizations – as change agents. Increasingly, sales organizations must restructure deployment models, rethink selling roles and messages, and wring greater efficiency out of existing resources. Sales operations departments are uniquely positioned to drive these efforts. But supporting strategic sales changes becomes challenging in the context of sales ops’ many tactical responsibilities, like reporting, territory alignment, or compensation administration. 


In this web panel a group of sales operations experts reviewed how high performing firms organize sales operations to support effective change in the sales force. Specific topics included: 


  • Balancing strategic and tactical demands on sales operations.

  • Sales operations staffing approaches. 

  • Structuring sales operations for maximum agility. 

  • Planning process that help optimize sales ops’ effectiveness. 

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Webcast

Webcast

Reassigning Sales Territories: A Change Will Do Your Sales Force Good

May 19, 2016

 

Many sales forces grew large and successful with a “hands off” approach – one that might have included hiring good salespeople, putting them on commission plans, handing them a phone book and turning them lose. If they were good, they made lots of money. If not, they starved themselves out of the organization. 

 

These companies soon reach a point where growth comes less easy – a point at which management asks: Are our senior salespeople too comfortable? Have we maxed out our market share? Are some customer segments less profitable than others? Are we bad at hiring millennials or are we just putting them in weak territories? 

 

For many of these companies, re-evaluating territories with a more “hands on” and analytical approach is the secret to sparking new organic revenue growth in a stale organization. In this session we identify root causes of territory misalignment and explore analytical approaches to optimizing territory assignments.

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research

Research

Research Brief: Assessing Sales Tools

May 04, 2016

 

Over the past two decades, technology-driven innovation has profoundly changed selling and sales organizations. PCs and smart mobile devices are now essential selling tools; CRM platforms are virtually ubiquitous; and new applications appear daily to help automate, enhance, or speed up how salespeople sell.

 

This research examines how business-to-business firms identify, assess, and select new technology used by the sales organization. It also focuses on how firms approach technology investment decisions, which technologies are considered most impactful, and where sales leadership realizes return from sales technology.

 

Throughout this survey we use the term “sales tools.” We use the term somewhat generically to refer to any piece of software or hardware used to enhance sales productivity or effectiveness. However, the term excludes general-purpose applications such as email or spreadsheets.

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Webcast

Webcast

The Technology-Enabled Sales Coach

April 28, 2016

 

Technology is transforming how sales organizations sell, but also how they’re managed. Among technology’s greatest potential management benefits relates to coaching salespeople – an activity under-prioritized and poorly supported in most firms.

 

This webcast explores multiple technologies that amplify, automate, and enhance management’s coaching efforts. Our expert panel will present emerging concepts, new technologies, and case studies on technology enabled coaching, while also fielding audience questions. Join us for a fascinating discussion on how technology is changing sales coaching.

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Webcast

Webcast

Indecent Proposals: How Your Proposals Undermine Sales (and How to Fix Them)

April 21, 2016

 

In many companies, proposals are not effective as they could be. In some, proposals may actually turn business away. For a variety of reasons, sales organizations often overlook the importance of well crafted, effectively presented proposals. As a result, a vital sales tool goes under optimized.

 

In this webcast we review common characteristics of underperforming proposals, share best practices in effective proposal design, and explore leading edge techniques for getting the most from the proposal process. The webcast features case study examples and actionable improvement strategies.

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Webcast

Webcast

Re-boarding the Sales Force: Leveraging Onboarding Principles to Keep Seasoned Salespeople Sharp

April 08, 2016

 

Enlightened sales organizations invest in salesperson "onboarding" - a structured effort to speed new salespeople up the learning curve. As our recent research shows, successful onboarding dramatically impacts salesperson productivity and new hire success rates.


A newly emerging idea attempts to leverage this approach for veteran salespeople too. Called "reboarding," it applies similar concepts - focused content delivery, specific learning milestones, on demand content delivery, and the expectation of ramping productivity.


Learn more about reboarding programs and their impact on sales force learning and productivity in this Sales Management Association webcast.

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research

Research

Research Brief: Sales Planning Practices

April 05, 2016

 

Sales organizations demand a daunting breadth of planning expertise: from prioritizing high-level objectives to align with firm strategy, to allocating limited resources to adequately cover opportunities, to establishing tactical performance goals at multiple levels within the organization, and, along the way, coordinating input from many corporate functions, on behalf of widely distributed sales force members, all while cultivating active participation and buy-in from disparate participants.

 

This research investigates how firms meet these planning challenges. It surveys planning practices in business-to-business sales organizations, identifies emerging trends, and prioritizes management’s planning priorities. It focuses primarily on sales team and organization-wide planning efforts (rather than call, opportunity, or customer-level planning).

An initial review of findings was also featured in a webcast, which may be viewed here:

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research

Research

Research Brief: Assessment of Sales Opportunities

April 05, 2016

 

Accurately assessing opportunity is an essential competency for sales organizations. It underpins critical resource allocation decisions, such as how and where to deploy salespeople, and it determines how essential work is prioritized within the sales force. Opportunity assessment involves a continuum of activities, from identifying and qualifying leads, to sizing active sales opportunities in prospects or customer accounts, to forecasting sales.

 

This research focuses on two activities in this continuum – lead scoring and sales forecasting. Lead scoring is chiefly focused on prioritizing which opportunities to target in a portfolio of leads, whereas sales forecasting is more concerned with assigning a value and probability to qualified opportunities. In this survey we use the term “sales opportunity assessment” to collectively include lead scoring and sales forecasts.

 

The research sought to answer several questions related to how sales organizations practice sales opportunity assessments. These questions include the following: What forms of opportunity assessment are being implemented effectively? How accurate are sales forecasts and what can be done to improve them? Do sales people have a bias to overinflate or underinflate sales opportunity assessments? Finally, what metrics are used in sales opportunity assessment and which are most valuable?

 

An initial review of findings was also featured in a webcast, which may be viewed here:

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research

Research

Research Brief: Sales Manager Training

April 04, 2016

 

This research focuses on how business-to-business firms support sales manager development through training. It surveys the training practices in use, the training topics and managerial competencies deemed important, the effectiveness of various training approaches, and management’s priorities in improving training efforts. The research attempts to benchmark firm investment in sales manager training, and more importantly to correlate sales manager training investment with firm performance, a link helpful to organizations focused on considering training investment’s financial return.

 

An initial review of findings was also featured in a webcast, which may be viewed here:

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