This week we spoke to Russell Davis, a B2B Sales expert. Russell has 25+ years of experience working with startups & multi-billion dollar companies on direct sales & revenue growth strategy. We picked his brain to learn a few tips on Enterprise Sales, and to learn to what or to whom he owes his success to.
The challenges for sales operations management varies by organizations, but here are few challenges that I believe hold true for all:
1. CRM implementation & usage – Sales Ops are responsible in most companies for creating and generating “reports” that show the health of the business and customer lifecycle. Reporting needs to be done from top to bottom: top of the funnel to retention to NPS… and back. If your CRM Data lacks Integrity, then reports are questionable as well...
2. Rolling out forecast/quotas/compensation plans in a timely manner.
3. Creating and Enforcing Rules of Engagement policies
4. Training and onboarding new hires
Personally I don’t believe you should be managing your time any differently at the end of a quarter, than you should at the beginning of a quarter. It is imperative that sales leaders stress the importance of revenue acquisition every “selling” day. The role of a sales leader is to continuously coach your team. If you have done your job effectively, the end of the month or quarter shouldn’t feel like a fire drill. Think about football coaches, they preach the importance that every play can impact the game from the first kick-off to the end of the 4th quarter.
1. Me – the most versatile sales tool in my quiver; I can conduct all roles in a sales process from prospecting to closing to onboarding. Every individual should work towards being capable of holding effective conversations within an organization: from leadership (CEO/President) to frontline employees. It doesn’t matter if the client is a fortune 500 or early-stage start-up.
2. Annual Reports – if you are selling to a publicly traded company, you can gain invaluable insights on the company’s vision/mission, financial health, and areas where you can potentially add value to their corporate initiatives (CEO Letter). Do your homework.
3. Telephone – if used correctly...the most effective tool for communicating with prospects, customers, partners, etc. Not too many deals are closed using email. Think about it, when a customer has an issue with your product or service, they don’t send you an email… they call you – why??? For an IMMEDIATE response.
I don't believe that there are big signs that can be easily spotted. If you are diligent in your role as a sales professional and have effectively aligned your sales process with your prospect's buying process; then you will receive validation each step along the buyers journey. Seeing eye to eye with prospects will assure that you are addressing THEIR needs (not yours) and can solve their needs (PAINS).
Yes! here are few secrets to increase sales team productivity:
1. Well-defined compensation plans that motivates your selling teams and highlights areas of importance for the company. Example: revenue, new customers, retention, NPS, # of meetings, etc. Sell your team on selling more.
2. Sales professionals despise the time sucked up from updating the opportunities & account info in their CRM. Seek out tools that increase efficiencies for getting data entered into Salesforce real-time. The longer the rep takes before entering the data… the more stale the insights become and the more out-of-date reports become. What you guys are doing at Rollio really addresses this pain. Allowing Salesforce users to update their CRM faster by text message or voice, gives them back hours of selling time every month. CRMs are HUGE assets, but tools that decrease the time they require to be maintained are just as important.
Russell Davis has over 25+ years in selling B2B solutions, implementing revenue growth strategies, and leading and developing sales organizations from early-stage to enterprise software companies. Those companies have included; Avalara (Saas Tax Compliance Solutions) ; OpenText (Enterprise Content Management), WRQ (Enterprise Connectivity Solutions) to name a few. Russell enjoys coaching and mentoring young entrepreneurs on the fine art of selling. Russell is an active mentor with Acceleprise and AccelerateDC (DC Economic Partnership), and with Howard University – Innovation and Entrepreneurship Course. Russell and his family moved to the Washington DC from Seattle 4 years ago.
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