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Sales Management

May 6, 2004
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Motivatinal meetings can hike sales results
One time, I attended a really negative sales meeting. It went something like this: “I’m sick and tired of you guys. Look at yourselves. You are slobs. Your paper work is atrocious. Now get out there and sell something!” Would this motivate you to sell more?Probably not.
We can learn something about sales meetings from direct marketing companies like Amway or Mary Kay Cosmetics. Why? Because they get their people enthused!
When they have individual salespeople relate success stories, the whole room stands up and cheers. Their meetings are upbeat and very positive, never negative.
Testimonials are highly contagious because they are real-world examples. Just look at any sales company that uses testimonials to motivate. They get everybody inspired. And there is nothing wrong with that.
You are a sales organization too, are you not? Why not find and use the success stories from your own sales staff? You could even solicit testimonials from other, non-competing dealers.
I had a dealer at one of my management seminars who had been one of the biggest Kirby vacuum cleaner distributors in the Midwest. He said, “We’d have a sales meeting every morning. My job was to work hard at getting everybody pumped way up. It was important because if I didn’t pump them up first thing in the morning, by noon they would quit. ”
Successful sales companies know that enthusiasm, energy and excitement can help people prepare for a very competitive world out there.
If you were to videotape your salespeople as they walked out of your next meeting, what would their faces be saying? Are they excited? Are they turned on? They should be! Don’t underestimate the rejection your sales staff faces every day. So, keep things positive and help keep them motivated.
A good rule to follow is to never criticize someone in front of others. When you come down on individuals in front of their peers, you embarrass them and demoralize the others in the room who may have been doing a great job. Meet with the culprit one-on-one to address the issue.
On the other hand, you should never give out incentives privately. Do it at your sales meeting or bring the sales force into your office for the presentation. Make it motivational. Use the winner’s name and mention specific deeds. Hold them up as an example.
My sales manager used to have a spinning wheel. We would earn points and the winners got to spin the wheel for cash. Points were achieved every time we sold a unit. There were also fast-start points, aged-unit points, demo points, etc. The more points we earned, the more spins we got and the more cash we won.
In addition to spinning the wheel, sometimes we would get to pick and pull envelopes that were contained cash. The more points you earned the more pulls you got.
As a sales manager, try different things to keep it interesting. Your sales meetings can play a big role in motivating your sales staff.
You Should Have the Last Word
Typically, most salespeople don’t have as much know-how and experience as those in management. Hence, you will close more sales if you adopt the policy that a customer never leaves without management’s prior notification.
A customer who is allowed to leave without management being notified may well be a sale that just walked out the door. Moreover, it’s good money that’s been thrown away. Here’s why:
When you total your expenses in advertising, promotion, community involvement and signage, you spend a lot of money to draw customers into your store. Divide your Traffic Log total into your ad/promo budget. This is your per-customer cost.
Too often we allow our salespeople to forget just what it took to get that customer to come into the store. Ask your salespeople, “What if we don’t spend the ad/promo money next month? Instead, we’ll take the customers that straggle in and give them our per-customer cost, in cash.”
If I had to hand every customer the cash equivalent of what it took to bring them in, I would be very conscious of maximizing each sales opportunity.

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