International Door & Operator Industry

SEP-OCT 2012

Garage door industry magazine for garage door dealers, garage door manufacturers, garage door distributors, garage door installers, loading docks, garage door operators and openers, gates, and tools for the door industry.

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SALES&MARKETING (continued from page 57) and as coach you should monitor their progress as the year progresses. Tell them periodically how they're doing, especially at their end of year performance review. The best possible scenario is that their compensation continues to climb and be parallel to increases in your sales and profi ts. It's a win-win for coach and player. Tracking Performance Weekly Huddle Ups - As coach you want to huddle your team up each week to see how the game plan is working. Meeting just to meet is a waste of time. Meeting for constructive and timely bi-directional feedback will keep your team (and you) on track. Keep it short, under an hour. Require each sales person to give a brief verbal report including booked sales for the week, key sales made or new accounts won and share at least one "victory for the week" with the group. Maybe even shar- ing information about market conditions and competition with the group can be very helpful. Your goal as the coach is to foster interaction among the sales people so that THEY do most of the talking. Even a little friendly competitive spirit within the group is healthy. Have fun with it. Make sure to report back to them in the group setting where they stand month-to-date and celebrate those making their quota for the week. Something as inexpensive as movie passes is a good way to provide instant reward for a job well done. The Numbers, the Numbers, the Numbers - As I stated in the beginning of this article, the business' success starts with the sales team. It is your job to watch the sales numbers and profi t margins like a hawk. Many computer software systems now allow for you to track profi t on a per job basis, by sales person. Even better is software that during order entry, the gross margin is shown as the sales person enters the quote or order. They have a good idea right up front as to what gross margin is built in based on the costs and selling prices entered. A snapshot of the job's profi tability BEFORE any work is done. Do not wait until the end of the month. Review these type reports weekly so you can give real time feedback and super- vision as needed to your sales team. Remember, the sales fi gure is the largest number on your operating budget and affects your profi tability more than any other. Make sure your sales game plan stays on track by carefully and constantly reviewing your team's sales numbers. Evaluate Your Players - Watch what people do versus what they say. Show me a sales person full of excuses as to why their sales are not meeting expectations and I'll show you someone that's wasting time and probably on their way out of the door. Great sales people are always, always busy. Whether it's closing a warm sales lead, pioneering selling (cold calls) or nailing down new accounts, success- ful sales people are self starters and are constantly looking for opportunities to sell. For feedback on a sales person's performance start with him or her. Most of the time they'll tell you honestly how they think they are doing. Contact key customers for feedback about your sales person's performance and how they are representing your company. Another good source of feedback is the other departments within your company. See what your dispatcher or bookkeeper says about your sales team member. Are they a team player? Easy to work with? Since sales people depend on the rest of 'the train' for support, it is imperative that they are well respected within your organization. Players that are having diffi culty deserve your support. More training, clearer direction or whatever is needed is a coach's job. However, if it becomes clear that your team member is struggling after a concerted effort to develop his or her skills and performance, do not be afraid to make a change. You will be doing both the person and your organization a favor. Finally, give written annual performance reviews. Give them a copy prior to sitting down with them so they will have time to digest your comments about their performance and be able to discuss it with you effectively. In the review make sure to state sales quota expectations for the coming year and set performance improvement goals to work toward. Celebrate Successes Expect A Lot, Give A Lot - You should never apologize for expecting superlative from your sales team. Keep the bar high. You will only be helping the individuals and the company as a whole. However, expecting a lot requires that you, as coach, give a lot. A lot of your time and resources. If you do this consistently it should pay big dividends in the long run. Celebrate Quickly and Often - When your sales team member turns in a win- ning performance, always remember to celebrate. Don't wait. Communicate his or her success to the entire organization Continued on page 60 58 International Door & Operator Industryâ„¢

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