Topic Guide for Sales Leader Peer Forums

 

Your peer group will discuss YOUR issues, and those of the other members of your peer group. You suggest, and bring the topics, and you bring your experience and expertise to help your peers. As a guide some of the topics forums typically discuss are:

 

Management vs Leadership

One of the most misunderstood aspects of being a leader is, when to be a leader and when to be a manager. We manage things but we lead people. Are we dictating to our team or are we gaining consensus? Are we helping them find their own way or are we telling them what to do?

Self development

What attributes, skills and capability do I need to develop more? What more do I need to do to improve my business acumen and leadership skills? Have I got a strong growth mindset?

Stakeholder relationships

What is the relationship with my boss? What is the relationship with the Board? How do I prepare for review meetings? Do you have great ideas but they are often either being squelched or just not being heard? How do we get our executive(s) to open their minds to some new ideas? How well am I managing the relationship with my executive peers - CFO, COO, CMO etc? 

Sales Culture

Is our primary intent focused on the customer or us? Have I built an effective sales system? Is our team embracing the way we do business? Have our sales processes and methodologies been fully embraced? Are my people effective at Account Management, Opportunity Management, Call Management? How are we at negotiations?

Sales Strategy

Have we a clear and effective sales strategy in place? What should it include? Does it fully support the company strategy? Where are the gaps? Does it support strategic business objectives and tactical plans?

Sales Model

Do I have the right sales model? Should I be selling more through the channel? Do I have the right channel mix? Is my inside sales team right? Is my field sales team right?

Do I need to tweak it or do I have to drive transformational change?

Accountability

One of the most difficult things for a sales leader to do is to really understand how to best create accountabilities for the salespeople on the team. Is it revenue alone and if so by what time period? What are the best ways to create those thresholds?

Compensation Model

Do I have the right compensation model? Are we incentivising the right behaviour? Am I paying my people too much or too little?

Tracking

What are we tracking? Are they the right things?

Tracking is so important in assessing if a sales person is going to make it or not. It is also important in figuring out how to coach this salesperson to success. What are best practices in funnel management and forecasting?

Motivation

Motivation is an interesting but challenging topic because we often assume everyone is motivated in the same way. Worse then that is we assume everyone is motivated the way we are motivated. Learn different ways of motivating different people to get the most from them.

Territory Management

Are territories established in your business? The structure right? Does it align to the sales strategy? Are they right for the person in them? How do you know? This conversation takes a real “out of the box” mind since most territories are established and never really readdressed.

Prospecting

The subject of prospecting is a universal issue. It is a combination of issues like: “what are we prospecting for? Where are the right places to prospect? Which is working best for which person and how do we track that?”

Team Building

Salespeople work individually and for sure are a bit ‘selfish’. That is OK in some aspects but how do we get our team to be willing to help each other reach a common goal as well as working to get themselves to the next level as individuals?

Sales Process

Having a sales process is one of the most important things in leading a sales organization but what is it? How do we track it? Does everyone sell the same way? How to get everyone into one common sales process without squelching their creativity and personality is a very powerful yet challenging issue. We will discuss how to create and manage the sales process while keeping each sales person’s creativity in tact.

Hiring and On-boarding salespeople

How to align new salespeople to the company sales culture and the way we do business. How to achieve good sales productivity quickly.

People Development

What do we need to do to build a strong coaching culture? What are we training our people on? How often are we training and re-training? Is it a continual process or a “one-time and you’re on your own” environment? Which is right? Are we helping our people develop general life/success skills (competencies beyond just sales skills or sales management skills)? Are my people effective at Account Management, Opportunity Management, Call Management? How are we at negotiations?

When to let go of a team member

When to pull the trigger on a salesperson that isn’t getting the job done? Are they not working hard? Are they trying but need more help? What help do they need and in what area? How do we really know when to stop wasting time and cut the strings?

HR Issues

Today human resource issues are far more important than in the past. What can and cant we do? We are much more vulnerable to legal action then ever before. Are we documenting everything before we make a change with the person? Did we do the same for everyone? Do we look like we have favouritism?

Compensation

One of the most widely discussed and disagreed upon subject is how a salesperson is paid. Commission? Salary? Both?? How about bonus? There is no right answer but is there a right answer for your organization? What is it?

Goal Setting

Goal Setting is an issue that is difficult to really set and manage correctly. What changes are happening within your market? What is the ultimate goal? Is it to sell by revenue alone? Should it be?


 

CRM

Part of tracking is having the ability to electronically find prospects and progress through the sales cycle. Sales people are notorious for not being diligent at updating information into the CRM. This formation is imperative to success within an organization and proper communication with a client in the future. What is the key to engagement and what is the best CRM option for you?

Sales Systems and Tools

What are the best sales technology and tools available? How would they integrate into our current systems and processes? What do I need to do to support the successful implementation of a new product / process / methodology / software / tools?

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