“Yeah, I can get as much, or more, done right from my living room as I did before the pandemic!” (said in the snotty tone of a spoiled brat kid, maybe a slight valley girl vibe) “Like, there is absolutely no need to go visit clients and potential clients in person!”
I don’t know much, but here’s what I do know:
- Next to impossible to hire good salespeople.
- A constant struggle to get average salespeople to get on the road and meet with potential clients. (Why do we need to meet with people in person when we have email and Inmail?)
- Overall, sales results weren’t too bad because the economy was on fire.
- Next to impossible to find good salespeople.
- Now everyone thinks working at home is great and why should I ever leave my couch!?
- Overall, sales results won’t be as good because the economy isn’t as good.
- Executives will freak the f*ck out because sales aren’t as good.
- Someone will knock on the HR door and say something like, “Our sales suck, we need better salespeople and better sales training!”
Do NOT underestimate how difficult it will be to get your people back on the road!
Right now you’re thinking the opposite. “Tim, every single day I hear from our sales folks about how they can’t wait to get back on the road!” Yeah, turns out, they’re pretty good at telling you and their boss what they want to hear! They already sucked at getting out and making sales calls, staying home for a year, didn’t make them better!
What can HR do to help the Sales Results at their Company?
1. Help your Sales Leaders make really good accountable goals that are trackable by individuals.
2. Report to your sales leader weekly travel budget stats. You might not be able to see if they did a good sales call, but you can ensure they actually got on the road!
3. Mentor/Buddy programs. It’s hard making sales calls in person. It’s a bit easier when you get back on the road with a partner. Yes, this increases cost, but we need to break the ice and get back into the groove.
4. Force your sales leaders to get back on the road with their team. We love, as sales leaders, to talk about our glory days, yet, not actually show the kids how it’s done.
5. Add a sales “work sample” into your interview process. Make the person interviewing come in and do a sales call with you and someone else from the sales staff. Make them show you they can actually do it. “Timmy, you’re going to come in sell me this pencil. Go!”
HR Pros, do not discount the value you can bring to the sales operation of your organization. Sales, revenue generation, is the lifeblood of your company. Want to elevate your status within your organization? Get involved with helping your sales team thrive!