Press Box Management

I mentioned a certain manager last week in a post and his desire to be an “observational manager” of a new sales hire instead of a hands-on manager.  The problem is compounding itself this week as he contemplates firing the salesperson who started 1 week ago today. These are the headaches we have to deal with in the sales hiring arena.  The new salesperson has already had one face-to-face meeting with a small prospect he located and is on the trail of 5 other companies…IN THE FIRST WEEK.  He has even accomplished this using his own computer, cell phone and resources.  He has also been afforded only 1 or 2… Read More

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Observational Management

I kid you not, this approach comes from a manager of a small company that recently hired a new salesperson.  The salesperson traveled to the company for a couple days of training before his official start date.  He did this on his own dime so he could accelerate his ramp-up time. The manager of the company was involved in the training since this salesperson would report directly to him (remember-small company).  During the training days, there was some confusion about when the salesperson should arrive in the morning.  No specific time was set, but a general schedule starting around 9am was the target.  The salesperson arrived around 9:20am. A stack… Read More

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Manage The Leading Sales Indicators

I’ve been talking to numerous prospects and existing customers this week about onramping salespeople.  This topic is germane to every company that employs salespeople. The discussions I had this week have all involved a common thread – managing the trailing indicators.  Revenue, customers, pipeline, etc.  The sales managers in these discussions were discussing the performance of their new salespeople based on the aforementioned criteria.  But this data is a trailing indicator.  Think of it as trying to drive a car by only using the rear-view mirror. Some of these companies were frustrated with the new salesperson and skeptical of their future.  Mistake. Onramping a salesperson is difficult because the trailing… Read More

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