(With Bruce Goldstein)
Sales quotas are often misused when they are administered by people who
misunderstand the sales and buying process. Effective sales quotas are
part of a performance enhancing environment, not a blunt instrument for
non-selling observers to harass the horses.
Realizing that true sales professionals sell for money and recognition
provides a better base for understanding how to use quotas effectively.
“Show me what you pay me for and I’ll show you what I’ll do.”
In our experience, selling is not where performance problems occur, but
in ancillary post- and pre-sales activities designed to make accepting
the sale easier for others in the organization. Are you selling what
buyers want? Are you earning the right? Is your delivery timeframe
When sales quotas are misused, they elevate predictive management
wishes, non sales desires, and a whole bucket of side issues. This
usually means sales projections championed by those developing products
or services, without the input of those who might buy, or those who sell
I like quotas that encourage sales professionals to accomplish their
weekly activity goals by the 3rd afternoon of the week. They can then go
on to invent something better for the next two days. This approach has
produced remarkable insights, monster transactions, increased job
satisfaction, and new ways to deliver better value at higher margins.
Sometimes it takes a couple of weeks, but I want everyone on the team to
be exceeding their activity goals before each week’s Status
Meeting. I want that status meeting to become a competition for
most excessive performance and a roundtable review of best methods.
Our next Two Sales Lab Leadership events are The New Management Is
Leadership, July 20th http://newmanagement.eventbrite.com
What is Web 2.0 And Why Should You Care? July 21st http://what-is-web2.eventbrite.com