Sales feedback is one of the most prohibitive factors in the sales process. Sales teams are set up like pyramids, an army of reps and account execs at the bottom, a smaller number of managers that oversee specific teams, regions or product lines. Then an even smaller team of management level VPs and Directors that oversee the overall direction and mission of the companies sales team. Experience levels tend to increase as you move up the pyramid and as such the individuals that are lower in the hierarchy tend to rely on those above for insight and guidance and herein lies our problem.
Let’s assume a fictional company, ISBM (International SUPER Business Machines). This fictional company has 111 employees in their stellar sales department. Sally Smith is their rockstar VP of sales, she is an industry vet and has helped several companies take their sales efforts to great new heights. She manages a team of 10 fantastic Sales Managers that are each in charge of either a region of the U.S. or an international market. Those managers each have a 10 person sales development team in their region that “hits the pavement and phones” to drum up business and leads for ISBM.
At each level up the pyramid there is only 10% the manpower than the previous level, which also means there are only 10% the productivity hours of the previous level. The 100 sales reps combine for 4,000 hours of productivity per weeks, 4,000 hours of new leads, nurtured opportunities, phone calls, emails, product demos, lunch meetings, video conferences, all representing whole lot of new information that says something about the progress and quality of each nurtured lead. The sales reps upload all of this information into their companies CRM and then look to their regional manager for feedback.
Well, that manager level of the pyramid that is represented by 10 regional managers only has 400 hours of productivity per week. The regional managers tend to be slightly more experienced and refined vets of the sales industry. Not only do they oversee their region but they more likely than not have leads and opportunities of their own to qualify and nurture.However, they are in charge of ensuring success for their region and reporting on their success or lack thereof, back to the VP. Empowering those reps to go out and bring in business for their company and help their region hit quota each quarter. But trying to squeeze 4,000 hours of productivity review into 400 hours is a rather herculean task, hence the bottleneck effect that is clearly taking place.
Then the managers all report back to the VP, they report back on their 400 hours of productivity as well as the 4000 hours of productivity form their sales reps all into the 40 hours a week of productivity that the VP has available to her. So now you see the problem, the bottleneck of information. The drop off in productivity hours as we move up the hierarchy of a sales team means that feedback is often delayed and too late to act upon. This results in missed revenue opportunity, longer sales cycles, and increased sales expenses.
So how do we remove these bottlenecks? Combining AI, Machine Learning, and Natural Language Processing into what we call a Sales Intelligence engine. Proximate’s Sales Intelligence is designed to help empower individual sales personnel to act on their sales data instead of analyzing it. Our system provides feedback and insight into the health of a lead, what next steps are best in the nurturing process, and when a lead should be abandoned. Our powerful insights help break the feedback bottleneck, keeping your highest quality leads on track, and filtering out poor quality leads so that new revenue opportunities can come through.
This combination will lead to shorter sales cycles, greater win rates and greater pipeline velocities for your entire sales team. Our goal is to continue to build and enhance our platform and suite of tools to provide our users with a True Sales Intelligence platform, really understanding how to craft a successful sale, and learning when it is ok to move on for a bad lead. Keeping a highly focused, streamlined sales pipeline will help your entire sales team not only meet but exceed your companies goals.
Want to learn more about how Proximate can help your sales team? Feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we would be happy to set up a time for an introductory call.