- March 3, 2011
- Posted by: Dave Kurlan
- Category: Understanding the Sales Force
In the 26 years that I’ve been helping companies grow and develop sales and revenue, I have rarely met with an executive for the first time and not heard about —it.
It all begins around week 11 of the quarter. A frenzy of calls, increased activity, sales management and sometimes C-Level intervention, discounts, offers that can’t be refused, and more. For 3 weeks every quarter, the entire sales force – hell, the entire company – takes on a do whatever it takes attitude to bring those deals in house.
Is this necessary? It is when your sales force can’t bring in the business in a logical, optimized, predictable fashion.
Can it be stopped? Of course. But you’re the only one who can stop it. And if you stopped it, what would have to change so that the revenue still came in?
Can you make things normal? if the 3 week frenzy occurs at your company each quarter, then that IS normal – for you. You can’t change that until you agree that it shouldn’t be that way, doesn’t need to be that way, and it isn’t healthy, scalable or even desirable for your company’s long-term future.
Do you have to give it away to get people to buy it? If you’re selling a product or service that sucks in comparison to your competition, then yes, you’ll probably have to offer heavy discounts or improve your quality. But if you provide something of value, then you should be able to get value for it.
Stopping the madness, getting the business closed when it is forecast to close, getting your asking price, and doing without end of quarter interventions requires having the right salespeople, having a customized, optimized, formal, structured sales process, great sales management, and the belief that normal doesn’t look like weeks 11-13 of every quarter.