Salespeople are burning out faster than ever, according to Forbes, because they don’t have coaches and mentors to facilitate long-term success. Additionally, many salespeople do not have adequate tools and resources to fulfill their job responsibilities. More interesting is how their sales leaders once experienced the same pain years before the new hires ever did, so the cycle just continues. Why is this? When things are going smoothly and the sales department is meeting its numbers, the organization’s leaders forget about the department and take advantage of the success it creates for the company. It is only when things go wrong and the numbers are less than expected that the organizational leaders remember that the sales department exists. With a glaring look and pointing finger, they blame the sales leader for the company’s lack of performance. Sales are often overlooked as a primary business discipline and are only thought about when things go wrong. Why are sales, something so vital to the existence of any firm, a secondary thought for so many organizations?
The Problem All Sales Leaders Face
Perhaps it starts with the education many of us receive in the first place at business school. Our days filled with less stress, less sleep, and more fun – never focused on sales classes. All the other main functions of business are taught, from marketing to business data analytics to even tourism management, but not sales! If sales never have any formal training implemented from the beginning, then where do professionals go to learn more about best sales practices? Simple: their sales leaders. With fresh eyes and a will to learn, many novice salespeople gain their leadership skills and practices from their own bosses. This isn’t the problem. The problem lies within the lack of training and development given to the initial sales leader from the organization. Little thought is given if that person can perform and execute the duties of the job. It’s likely the organization is simply relieved to fill the role. Yet, it’s not the organization’s fault because no one understands sales enough to create a meaningful training program in the first place. No one has ever understood sales the way we understand the law of gravity or how to analyze a simple balance sheet in accounting.
With all the new resources coming into play, like CRM software and endless data analytics, sales is gaining importance in the eyes of organizations, which means the organizations need a reliable sales leader. The solution: a Fractional or Outsourced VP of Sales. Sales has not been one of the departments organizations are applying the outsourced model to, although its implementation has been successful elsewhere in companies. It can be challenging to embrace the idea that a highly-qualified sales leader working part-time can accomplish more than an inexperienced one. As leading sales professionals, we are repeatedly taught how to execute sales functions, increase growth and focus on the numbers. Yet, we are never quite set up for success even with all that insightful sales experience. You need more than your advanced experience and sharp intuition to be successful. Sidehill Consulting is here to help improve your sales leaders by using its own experienced ones. Work with a Sidehill sales leader to dramatically improve your sales department in the first 90 days, all in preparation to hire your own VP of Sales. If you think this solution may be what your company needs, contact us today for a complimentary consultation. Jon Anderson is President of Sidehill Consulting and provides hands-on service as an Outsourced VP of Sales. He can be reached at [email protected].