What you cannot see can kill you. If you don't see the car to your right about to run a stop sign, you might be in trouble. If you cannot see a clogged artery, you might be in trouble. If you cannot see that your sales team is failing to execute the fundamentals of an effective sales approach, then surely this will kill your chances for consistent sales growth.
Effectiveness as a sales manager requires many skills, tendencies and attributes. Working with Objective Management Group (The #1 Sales Evaluation and Assessment Tool), Anthony Cole Training Group has identified 5 “musts” for a sales manager:
- Managing Performance
These 5 functions plus some additional content related to systems and processes and effective selling make up our Sales Managed Environment® Certification Program (SMEC).
I have recently gone through ocular plaque radioactive surgery. It's a procedure where Dr. Augsberger knocked me out, pulled the eyeball out of the socket (maybe just turned it a bit) and sewed a gold-plated disc to the back of the eye. The purpose was to kill the cells associated with a choroid melanoma. Post-surgery included placing an antibiotic cream under the lower eyelid, covering that with a patch and then covering that with a lead eye cover. It also, in the state of Ohio, mandated that I stay in a room with a lead door for 4 days. After 4 days, they took me back to surgery, removed the disc, let me recover and sent me home. That is when I really began to notice the importance of two lenses to view the world.
I cannot see anything on my right unless I turn my head. I have some peripheral vision to the right, but really just beyond my nose. The other night, Linda and I were walking the dog and I turned my head to the right to talk to her and she was gone. I had to do about a 270 degree turn to find her.
Since I've been home, it has become very apparent that, in order for me to function effectively, I have always counted on two lenses to see, work and enjoy the world. Without both lenses, it forces me to work harder and not nearly as effectively as I did prior to surgery. So… what does this have to do with sales management effectiveness?
I've been teaching and coaching our SME™ program for a dozen years and my personal experience is what is driving me to see our approach a different way. Each one of the components of SME™ is really a lens for a company sales leader to use to “see” how the sales group is performing. Kind of like my doctor used a blood test, a C-scan, and a biopsy to determine how well my body is functioning. One data point alone doesn't tell the story. Another analogy to use would be to look at the scoreboard at the end of the game to determine how well the game was played. The score is a lagging data point and only tells you who happened to win. It doesn't tell you why one team won and why the other lost.
Using all five lenses in your organization will tell you several things. In the words of Seth Godin (must watch video), you will know:
- Why they are racing to the top or the bottom
- Why they will continue to race to the top or the bottom
For more information on these five lenses, feel free to pull down our most recent eBook, The Extraordinary Sales Manager. This new view just might give you what you need to see your team’s activities from a new perspective and tools to execute on the necessary changes.