Many salespeople don’t realize that sales is easy if you follow a basic formula. Typically, however, sales reps have a habit of following the bouncing ball their prospects are throwing despite the many times it can lead to a dead end.
Dave Mattson started out as a client at (David) Sandler Training and he’s been with the company for 30 years. He worked his way up the organization and became a partner in 1994. He had an opportunity to work with Dave for six years before David passed away in 1995. Dave purchased the company in 2012 and is currently the Brand Manager and CEO. They have 265 training centers globally and just last year, they trained 31,000 people and streamed their training to 19,000 people.
This streamed training is becoming the way of the world, especially with the technology that is currently available. As a result, people in their system are represented by different age groups, different cultures, and different countries. Dave’s company creates content that is accessible in whatever format their clients need. For example, younger clients prefer several 4-minute micro pieces of training, versus a 45-minute lesson. With that knowledge, Sandler made 2,700 micro-learning lessons and added it to their suite of products and services.
Sales strategies keep evolving so Dave and his company must keep up with new trends. With Sandler being one of the longest-running companies, many people in the industry may view them as “dinosaurs” but year after year, they win awards for best sales training, management, and coaching. They clearly have the expertise to do it right.
Importance of goal setting and planning
From a CEO’s perspective, planning is imperative to make sure all the different groups in the organization know where they’re going. The assumption is that you have great salespeople working for you, competent individuals, but you have to make sure they are all heading in the right direction. It is the leader’s responsibility to see all the working parts. Each group needs to be assigned their tasks so everyone ultimately moves toward the organization’s goals.
As a leader, you need to set up a strategy on how to plan and set goals you can achieve in 2020. Layout the benchmarks you want your salespeople to achieve and how you intend to get there. Show your team the contingency plans so they can better define daily goals for themselves. When the entire team has accountability, planning becomes a “we” exercise. The more you socialize it, the more people get involved. Dave suggests that for your corporate goal to become successful, each salesperson needs to link their commissions to personal goals that will keep them motivated. A great question is, “If you earn your $250,000 commission, what are you going to do once you have your money?” Being able to visualize something that is meaningful to them, helps to keep up the momentum.
There are two reasons why people leave the company. The first is that they don’t feel like they’re being stretched. The second is they don’t respect the person they work for. Sales leaders have to think of ways to motivate their sales reps to achieve their goal, not only for the organization but for individual goals as well.
When the team doesn’t play their role
The most common reason people say they don’t play their role say is they don’t have enough time. There has always been a serious time compression problem in sales. Many magazines claim that the top 3% of all producers are the people who have written down their goals so 97 out of 100 people don’t. This tells you how difficult the job of a sales leader is in an organization. They are in charge of producing revenue from people they can’t control.
Sales leaders need to find a way to motivate their people to make the organization’s plan a success.
The planning process
The first thing you can do to plan and set goals that you can achieve in 2020 is to think about the different buckets of goals. What are the categories that are most important to you? Job promotion? Family? Purchases? Think of the things you want to do in those areas and mindmap. Doing this allows you to free your inhibitions and get comfortable with the things you want to do. It’s the fastest way you can brainstorm. Using your dream board or a journal, start putting these buckets in order of priority.
As a CEO, Dave usually focuses on no more than five goals. This allows him to really focus. Goals are more achievable when you don’t have a broad list that can serve as a distraction.
Have your mind map, narrow your goals to five, and have some plan of action. Break your plans down quarter by quarter, month to month, and day-to-day. If you can hit your goals for Q1, then you know you’re on track. If not, plan out your contingency and look for the people who can help you get refocused.
The problem with setting annual goals is, while there’s nothing wrong with that, these goals are a long way off and you don’t get to feel a daily win.
Become a behaviorist
Say you have a goal of $10 million. You may have a monthly goal of $850,000. That may mean six sales a month and 24 presentations. Getting in front of people is part of the plan but you can’t control all aspects of that goal. For example, you can’t control how your prospect will respond. You can’t control anything but your own behavior. An option is, then, is to take a financial goal is and then reverse engineer. What are the daily goals you need to meet? Make little daily goals because you may not be able to control the outcome but you can control your behavior every single day.
Sales reps from any company can break down their annual goal and reverse engineer to daily behavior. Doing this will help them reach their quota faster.
When setting goals, what matters most is your attitude and behavior. A sales rep must have a balanced mindset and do the things he is supposed to do on a daily basis.
Balance between realistic and stretch goals
You need to know the distinction between a stretch goal and a realistic goal is. Stretch goals are reachable in longer time frames and while that is okay, you still need realistic goals that you can hit.
Sandler taught Dave how to make some stretch goals. When Dave was 70% to his goal, David would move the target even further. Sandler didn’t do it to be discouraging but, instead, he’d encourage Dave to keep moving because he knew Dave had the momentum to do even better.
Remember to move slowly and celebrate your success.
Goals are there to adjust. Be careful of setting goals that are too low just to feel good about yourself.
Motivate yourself to reach your goals
You can plan and set goals you can achieve in 2020 by motivating yourself.
Motivating yourself is a great idea way to reach your goals. Verbalize and publish your goals. Some people write down their goals in a journal so they can track their progress. It’s also good to have people around you who will hold you accountable to your goals and keep challenging you. They can be your partners, your colleague, or anyone else who won’t shy away from calling you out.
It’s also important to be able to adjust in the event you don’t achieve your goals. Failing isn’t a bad thing when it offers an opportunity to make the adjustments you need to get closer to success. These tweaks are the way to get back on track.
To plan and set goals you can achieve in 2020 write out your goals and create a plan of action. That will be your guide. Verbalize your goals too and make sure to break them down into achievable, daily goals. Believe in yourself and remember the Success Triangle: Attitude-Behavior-Technique. Know that it’s okay to fail. You are going to fail more than you win and the failures are not necessarily negative to your goal setting. They just let you know it’s time to adjust.
“How To Plan And Set Goals You Can Achieve In 2020” episode resources
Dave Mattson recently finished his book entitled The Road to Excellence. It’s a playbook to help small entrepreneurs take their businesses from where they are today to where they want to be in three to five years. He also just published the book Success Cadence, he wrote it with two other business-minded people from the company called Splunk, they were able to take their company from 30 million to 1.2 billion in just five years. This book is about how to turn your organization and yourself as a producer into a sales-focused machine and find people who are willing and able to do what it takes to succeed.
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