Why are some companies bashful about sales goals? Did I say some? I meant lots of companies. Is it because they don’t want to scare off the new talent? Is it because they don’t really know what good goals are? Is it because we are not used to measuring our team in this way? Or maybe we are concerned that we are starting them on a fast path to failure because they will instantly see something that is out of reach and give up before they even try. Perhaps you are hurting your salespeople more than you are helping them by not giving them goals? And why is that? Because the sooner you have goals, the sooner you get results.
Look at it this in a different way. How will you know that your salesperson is or will be successful? Better yet, how will they know whether or not they are being successful? Imagine sports teams without nets, hoops and goal posts. You would see a bunch of players running around everywhere with the ball. It might be fun to watch, but no one would get anywhere and soon grow tired of their efforts. The same is true of your sales team. They are just our running around on the field and they don’t even know where they are supposed to take the ball if they are lucky enough to even find it. Here are some helpful hints to create goals for your salespeople.
- Simple – Goals for salespeople (or anyone for that matter) should be simple. It could be a number that measures units or revenue related to a specific target.
- Logic – The goal should make sense in that you don’t just pull numbers out of thin air. We base them on past performance, similar salespeople, market trends, etc.
- Time – Each goal needs to have a timeline as well as checkpoints built in to make certain that people are staying on course.
- Achievability – Can other salespeople of like kind and quality accomplish this goal or are we setting that salesperson up for failure. Allow for small victories to allow your salespeople to develop confidence.
- Process – Can you show your salespeople the path to success or do you expect them to figure this out on their own? Give them a process that shows them step by step how to reach success and they will be more receptive to the goal than ever.