- April 20, 2022
- Posted by: Dave Kurlan
- Category: Understanding the Sales Force
How quickly can you determine why a salesperson is failing?
Dinger loves to play catch with his ball. He has seven of them but loves his white ball the most. When we’re out playing catch and I point to a ball and say, “there it is” or “right there” or “get it” he just can’t seem to find it! Dinger has good listening skills but his ability to see the obvious isn’t very good.
Such was the case earlier this week when a surprised client wanted an explanation for why one of their salespeople, who does not perform very well, scored well on his evaluation. “How can someone who is not my top performer score better than someone who is my top performer?”
That sounded like a challenge so I said, “Let’s go!”
Objective Management Group’s (OMG’s) evaluations are very accurate so I always assume the evaluation is correct and simply ask questions to determine whether something needs explaining, or they might not be looking at the best data to determine whether a salesperson is truly a top producer or an under performer. The most common pushback occurs when someone they have inappropriately labeled as a top performer does not evaluate very well. In almost every case, it’s because the salesperson manages more revenue than anyone else, but isn’t the one who sold those accounts. A good account manager, but not a producer.
In the case of this evaluation, the salesperson was simply not performing as well as his peers so I assumed there was a good explanation.
I’ll share what I found.
First I looked at his 5 Will to Sell competencies which include Desire, Commitment, Outlook, Motivation and Responsibility – all specific to sales – and while I expected to find an issue with commitment, I did not find the issue there.
Next I looked at the 6 Sales DNA competencies, expecting to find an explanation there and while his Sales DNA is only fair at best, at 67 it was certainly not the primary source of the problem.
Next I looked at the 10 Tactical Selling Competencies and found what I was looking for.
He scored an 8 on Relationship Building! If you look at these 10 scores in the proper sequence, he’s a hunter who can reach decision makers and when he schedules a call or face to face meeting, and they talk with him, he isn’t able to connect with with his prospects.
He scored 84 in the Hunting competency but that’s deceiving! What prevented him from scoring 100? If you look at the attributes in the Hunting competency below, there are two important attributes he’s missing. The first is Likable! If a salesperson isn’t likable it’s very difficult to get beyond that!! They simply won’t perform! The second is Maintains Full Pipeline. Clearly, he struggles to convert the scheduled calls and meetings into opportunities.
The answer is always in the OMG evaluation but you need to look at more than a single score! At a bare minimum, read the dashboard where these scores come from. You don’t have to read 30 pages but at least read the first 2 pages!
Going back to my opening paragraph, “Right there!” “There it is!”
Clients use OMG’s Sales Team evaluations as a development tool to uncover sales skill gaps, opportunity for growth, and most importantly for answers to age-old questions like, why aren’t we selling more? Why is our win-rate so low? Why aren’t we generating more new business? Why do so many opportunities come down to price? Are our salespeople in the best roles for them? How much more business could we be generating if we coached and trained on these gaps? Are we hiring the right salespeople? Are our sales managers coaching effectively?
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