Change can be difficult. It can be painful, and we can be slow to recognize the need for it. What we cannot escape, regardless of vertical or industry, is that things do change whether we want them to or not.
When that time comes, we can either adapt and grow or be left in the dust.
As simple as it is to recognize the need for change on an intellectual level, it’s much harder to come to terms with emotionally, especially in the sales environment.
Even if you know what’s best for your sales team, it can be difficult to let go of the old ideas or ways of thinking that keep you stuck in the rut that you’re trying to escape. Even tougher is the change we don’t accept. In fact, the word “insane” actually comes to mind. The definition of insanity is repeating the same actions over and over again, but expecting different results.
As a business owner or sales leader, objectivity is an asset, but what happens when you can’t see outside of your own preferences? If there’s one thing that’s an innovation and adaptation killer, it’s clinging to ideas and methods that are no longer serving you.
Still, many people continue to scratch their heads when their business growth stagnates.
If your last several years look the same, don’t let fear or pride get in the way — accept that it’s time to change your strategy. But we’re not talking tiny shifts; in some cases, drastic changes must occur to see any real results.
How do we go about this? And where should those changes happen? That’s exactly what we’re going to dive into.
How To Make Big Changes To Your Business Strategy
Initially, it’s a good idea to look inward for advice on how to change your business strategy, but it will also benefit you to bring in outside help and perspective after you’ve taken inventory in-house. Here are a few ways to jumpstart things:
1. Re-examine key performance indicators to see if they’re still an accurate depiction of growth. Scrutinize metrics beyond revenue, like salaries, budget and resource allocation, and more. Don’t be afraid to dive in anywhere; it might require radical thinking to cause radical change.
2. Ask your sales team members for honest feedback. Encourage them to be candid about company culture. You never know where a helpful idea may be hiding, or who it may come from. If flagging morale is an issue, keep that in mind; human factors do affect sales. Don’t be afraid to dig for real honesty from the team. Now isn’t the time to be precious with your ego, it’s time to move toward solutions.
3. Conduct new market research and leverage competitors’ data. Have you really been using all the research available to you? Maybe it’s time you update your data and take a refreshed, high-level look at the landscape of your industry.
4. Introduce one new initiative. Don’t throw the kitchen sink at the problem by trying several new strategies at once, but do initiate a single change. Invest in a down market, or bring in an outside consultant to review your CRM procedures. This is a better way to track what works in sales, and a more cost-effective method of handling the problem, than making too many changes at once.
5. Re-evaluate employee skill sets. It may be time to reassess the team. Once you’ve established a new initiative and taken stock of the skills your team possesses, you’ve got to prioritize. Are the skills you have the ones you need most? If not, it may be time to make some cuts and hire new personnel who possess those skills. That said, begin this process by investing in your current team through mentoring and training programs rather than dismantling it outright.
6. Plan to systematically revisit your changes. In 3 months, 6 months, and again in a year, reevaluate the changes you made. Depending on the alteration, it can take months to see the ripple effects, and you’ll need to know how each change affects your sales department before making another one.
Remember: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. It is not productive. We have to shake up the process to affect the outcome, and if we’re unwilling to look at the bigger picture, we’ll miss the bigger solutions.
Remain as objective as possible, look inward then ask for outside consultation, and don’t be afraid to color outside of the lines. If your last three or four years of revenue look the same, why hold off on trying to change that?
And don’t forget to reach out to your friends here at C-Level Partners. We specialize in multiplying the force and impact of sales teams across the world. We have a proven and predictable system to put your sales team in front of the Right People, in the Right Role, Right Now. So please feel free to get in touch.
Until next time,