Hitting revenue growth targets is often easier said than done. Dan Weinfurter’s book, Second Stage Entrepreneurship, offers many practical tips for driving aggressive sales growth. Five of the simple practices he advocates:
Real brief. Have a ‘power pitch’. For the ‘Zero Moment of Truth’ in sales. Done right, it ensures prospects don’t ‘zone out’ as you ‘drone on’. It’s the short, clear, explanation of what makes your company unique and compelling. In such ‘power pitches’, be buyer-focused, and hero-making. Growth marketing requires stories, in which customers are the heros. For the impacts they’ve had on the performance of their firms.
Use structured processes. They bring discipline into what would otherwise be reactive, and inconsistently executed, activities. Discipline improves the odds that ‘following-through’ occurs.
ACCELERATE WHAT’S LEARNED FROM WHAT’S DONE
Let everyone see how well [or not] they’re executing and they’ll learn to execute with more impact. He cites the example of a big gap between how good participants thought they were at something and what they saw when watching a recording of themselves. Such feedback is crucial; B2B sales reps will value and deserve it. As catalysts for learning, with practice, how to better their execution practices.
COACH, WITH IMPACT
Improve front-line sales management. Sales performance is dynamic; which makes coaching crucial. Effective coaching requires clarity on how each Rep does their job each day, including the quality of their interactions with buyers. It’s what counts. In this, sales training’s important. But coaching, guidance, and mentorship is where what’s trained gets learned, with practice. The best coaches help Reps learn what’s causing performance shortfalls and what to do about it. Weinfurter’s admonition: make such coaching-inspired learning a constant, on-going, effort. A habit, not an event. With close attention to all the inputs that make good results possible.
As Jack Welch said, ‘face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it to be’. In Weinfurter’s view, it’s important to find data that causes you to answer performance questions based on facts. When you do so, the answers may surprise.