The snare drum rolls in the background -zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
Execution by a team is an awesome thing to behold!!
On Tuesday, we discussed the things that block us from effective execution of the strategies that we honestly intend to implement into our business model.Read Post
Then on Wednesday, we discussed how sales people can improve their personal execution of the strategies to attain their goals.Read Post
Today, we will focus on specific actions a sales leader can take that will improve the strategy execution of those on their team.
One of my particular challenges in my sales leadership roles was that I would often make things too complicated. I would have some “absolutely ingenious” strategies on moving my team in the direction of our organizational goals. (Did I mention that I am a very humble person too) 🙂 . But there were times when the steps for implementation or accountability became too involved and cumbersome. The result would sometimes be that the execution of the strategy would suffer.
Since the success of the leader will rise and fall on your ability to influence the behavior of your team – keep things simple.
Set 1-3 organizational goals that will drive the results for which you are judged. In my opinion, your goals should not be a sales amount. Instead, set your goals on the things that will bring the sales amount. I have often thought I could focus on many areas at one time. However, I would have to agree that I was much more efficient, and my team was able to execute much better on a smaller number of targets.
Any weapon that you use to hit a target works best when operated on two fundamentals.
- Select a pinpoint target
- Aim forward – not backward
Once you have your 1-3 organizational goals set – select actions, with pinpoint accuracy, that will lead to the desired results. Then keep your personal and team activities focused on consistently taking those actions.
Always give praise and recognition for accomplishments in both activity and results. For that one particular activity, focus backwards. Also, for regular quarterly and annual performance reviews, you will have to give some focus toward sales history for analysis. However, for your daily and weekly execution conversations – aim forward and not backward. Ask your team questions about how they plan to execute and achieve their results. Give mentoring as indicated. Have them tell you what they have executed thus far and what they will execute in the short term.
Make sure all guns are loaded, all aims have been set, and all fingers are on the trigger – then FIRE! Everyone on the team needs to be empowered to pull the trigger and they need to be in the battle. This includes the sales leader. Often, the sales leader finds themselves in situations where the urgent takes up the time of the important. If you are the sales leader – you have the magic that no one else on your team can replace. That magic is more effective in the battle than in the office.
One final thought. You do have to check the pulse on how the execution is going. Short term goals and short term pulse checking to see how the execution is going is a must.
But remember, you have your fingers on their necks to check for signs of life; and give them help. Not to choke them 🙂
Sales leaders: what is “in the battle” in your business model?