A jack of all trades and master of none is almost always consigned to a subsistence living. To really attain the pinnacles of success, one must be possessed of an almost preternatural ability to focus on the few, critical success metrics that matter. What you chose NOT to do is as important as what you chose TO do. It’s the responsibility of executives and managers to direct and inspire their sales teams with this important tenet in mind, and the reps responsibility to execute it with laser focus.
In the business of selling beverage alcohol, marketing teams often over complicate the strategy for sales people. Finding the correct metrics and KPIs to focus upon (and then keeping energies trained on those objectives) can be difficult. If not properly utilized, even today’s powerful tech tools can have an adverse effect, overwhelming users with too much data and too many distractions. As purveyors of said powerful tech tools for beverage selling, let us offer some sage advice.
This may not be new wisdom; but in the age of ubiquitous information, it has never been truer. To win, you need to embrace the old KISS axiom. (Keep It Simple, Stupid!) What this means when using the GreatVines platform – with all its power, controls and visibility over sales, trade marketing and distribution – is that one can either do a few things well or many things poorly. It can be very easy to get mired down in so many detailed areas between brand activation, trade marketing planning/execution/management, pricing optimization, survey activity and the myriad other activities this platform is designed to accommodate. We’re not saying that any of these activities are inherently more or less important than the other. Just that executive and management users of GreatVines should decide where their most pressing challenges and biggest opportunities lie before developing a focused strategy to achieve them, using the GV platform.
To put it into some concrete terms that resonate with your day-to-day activities in sales and marketing, ask yourself this: “How many goals can a sales rep really focus on at one time before their efforts become too diluted to yield results in any one area?” Yes, it is true, GreatVines will support and help efficiently manage a pretty much unlimited number and variety of goals you may set for your salesforce. But you must consider the downsides of having too many goals.
Best Practices when Setting Goals for Salespeople
Be consistent over time. Don’t change the focus every other month.
Focus on Sales Drivers not end results. Set goals for Leading Indicators (sales driving activities) rather than Lagging Indicators (sales volume).
Be strategic. Specify not only the activities to be executed, but the accounts to execute them in.
Like the proverbial jack of all trades referenced at the beginning of this article, having too many irons in the fire means you’ll master none of the activities that you’ve resolved to address. Too many goals often leads to a lack of focus in any significant area and as a result little to nothing gets done. Your sales teams understand this dynamic intuitively. Although they may not risk speaking up if they begin to feel spread too thin by too many competing management directives, the fact is they will simply never be able to deliver satisfactory results on all of them.
If company performance/lagging indicators reflect this dynamic (and if you’re confident that your salespeople are truly committed and not making excuses), then you must logically conclude that the goals set forth by management are too complex and too numerous. In this all-too-common example, the problem is a management issue and not necessarily sales rep performance issue.
All this discussion serves to underscore one of the key differentiators between GreatVines solutions and those of competing offerings. When you engage a GreatVines solution, you not only get state of the art mobile software, but also powerful analytics combining your leading indicating sales activities with lagging indicators of sales volume. You also gain access to a reservoir of industry-specific talent and experience possessed by the GreatVines team. GreatVines customers are provided access to some of the best and brightest minds in the beverage alcohol sales realm. Savvy customers take full advantage of the opportunity to harness expert perspectives on identifying the most relevant, actionable strategies for increasing sales and growing market share. Lean into these great resources to help your organization identify the best areas upon which to focus the powerful applications that comprise your GreatVines solution platform and avoid being spread too thin to win!