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It's Almost August: 5 Steps to Finishing Strong

By now the summer is almost over and you need to be concerned about exceeding August's quotas, achieving September's goal and the fourth quarter sales numbers. What should you be thinking and doing? Here's a quick checklist:

  1. Ask each salesperson to identify if their top prospects/decision makers have vacations scheduled during the next 45 days and if they do, will they delay planned decision dates?

  2. Review your pipeline values by stage at 30, 60, 90 days to identify if you have enough opportunities for the future and if you can "move ahead" or accelerate their decision points. Do you need a few quick marketing lead generation programs?

  3. Carefully measure your leading indicators to see if your salespeople are taking the summer off. Leading indicators are sales actions that will lead to demonstrations and/or proposals.

  4. Do you have third- and fourth-quarter sales contests planned?  "Sprint to the Finish" could be a theme. The contest could be based upon year-end sales by person or a team plan:  The entire sales team wins by exceeding the sales budget for the fourth quarter.

  5. Schedule a company picnic lunch where the sales/marketing team cooks and serves the meal for everyone else in the company. This will build teamwork and shows appreciation for everyone that serves sales during the rest of the year.

Why all this special attention?  It is not uncommon for people, in general, to slow down during July and August; family vacations, sports activities, weekend events -- all sorts of activities can begin to take away the focus that is necessary for high performance teams to excel. As a sales leader your focus and energy has to rise to another level to maintain the intensity that is necessary for success.

What other ideas do you have to ensure your third and fourth quarters are successes?

Posted by Ken Thoreson on July 26, 2010 at 11:59 AM


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