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You should be prepared for any or all of these questions from sales agents when you approach them for the first time. If you have never dealt with agents before and they are experienced then they will most likely have more questions for you than you will have for them. Preparation is the key. The more you know about what they may ask the better off you will be. By reviewing these questions you can prepare the information that may be necessary.

In my interview with Craig Lindsay, President of Pacesetter Sales Associates, he mentioned a couple of key points that are worth repeating here. Agents cannot provide a “magic wand” if your company is in trouble and sees this channel as a quick fix for poor growth. Working with agents requires a long term commitment in order to be successful. A company must do their homework and understand both their market and the agent’s business model. Craig has 16 questions that he uses to determine whether his agency is going to proceed with new product or manufacturer. He rates the answers on a scale of 1 to 10 and if the company does not get a good grade they will decline the opportunity.

As an example, he will give a company a score of 10 if they currently use sales agents and a 1 or zero if he feels they are just experimenting with an agent channel. By rating the companies it saves him time and ensures everyone at Pacesetters follows the same procedures when they are evaluating potential partners.

If the good, experienced agent doesn’t see a plan and structure in place they usually choose to pass on the program. If they aren’t concerned then they may be inexperienced and not a good fit in the first place. As one agent said during an interview, “if you don’t have a documented program in place then you’d better have a ‘cure for cancer’ otherwise I am going to walk.” As Michael Greber author of the E-Myth Revisited states, “in order for a business to work it must become a system so it works exactly the same way, every time, down to the last detail.”

Show the agents you have a structure and system in place and you will be way ahead of other companies that are dabbling in the alternate channel program and just can’t understand why agents are not interested in their products or services.

If you would like more detailed information about establishing your own channel of sales agents then order a copy of: How To Find Recruit and Manage Independent Sales Agents

The book is a comprehensive guide on how to select, manage and motivate sales agents. It provides proven exercises, forms, and templates to equip interested sales managers with the necessary tools to run their own successful sales agent program. As Brian Tracy, author of Ultimate Sales Success stated, “This fast-moving, practical book, based on years of experience, shows you how to leverage and multiply the sales potential of your products and services, selling five and ten times as much as you ever thought possible.”

To Your Success!

Robert J. Weese, Sales Coach & Author
B2B Sales Connections

Download the Webinar Video, How to Find & Recruit Commission Only Sales Agents in 30 Days. It’s available for instant download and viewing. Watch it as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause it anywhere to learn at your pace!

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Remember, your sales representatives have to start a sale in order to close a sale. If we manage their inputs, we will receive better outputs. More quick sales management tips here.

Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success and Action Plan For Sales Management Success
B2B Sales Connections

Want to know more sales techniques used by today’s top producing sales management professionals? Check out our sales and sales management training webinar videos. They are available for instant download and viewing! Watch them as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause them anywhere to learn at your pace!

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

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The first question that is most often asked by company executives looking to establish a sales agent channel is, “how much will it cost?” As usual the answer is “that depends”.

Before you grab some number out of the blue you need to research the facts. What are your projected sales for the territory? How much revenue do you expect to generate from a specific territory? How much will it cost us to have a direct sales representative in the territory.

Once you have these projections you can begin to formulate a plan of attack based on your budget. Since an independent sales agent partner does not cost you salary, benefits or expenses, your upfront costs will be similar to recruiting a direct sales person. On the other hand, the long term benefits will be a reduced cost of sale for your company. (more…)

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Sales Tip: Do what you say you are going to do, when you say you are going to do it. Breaking a commitment to a customer is worse than never having made the commitment in the first place. More quick sales tips here.

Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success and Action Plan For Sales Management Success
B2B Sales Connections

Want to know more sales techniques used by today’s top producing sales professionals? Check out our sales and sales management training webinar videos. They are available for instant download and viewing! Watch them as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause them anywhere to learn at your pace!

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

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Sales Tip: If you sell on price, you will lose on price. If you sell on value, the price becomes secondary. More quick sales tips here.

Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success and Action Plan For Sales Management Success
B2B Sales Connections

Want to know more sales techniques used by today’s top producing sales professionals? Check out our sales and sales management training webinar videos. They are available for instant download and viewing! Watch them as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause them anywhere to learn at your pace!

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

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They say that if you are good in sales, you are never unemployed. The problem is that if your sales job is not a good fit for you, not only are you not as happy as you should be, you are simply not earning the income you could. To top it off, you may never know your ideal sales job exists or where to find it because up to 90 % of the jobs available are not even advertised!

Download my webinar video and join me, Susan A. Enns, author of Action Plan For Sales Success, on May 11 or May 25 for a webinar where we will discuss how to find your dream sales job.

Download the webinar video, “How to Find Your Dream Sales Job!” here!

“Another great webinar. This is my 2nd webinar with you and I am loving them.”

You will leave this session with action items that will impact your job search immediately including:
– How to define your ideal sales job so you will recognize it when you see it
– How to write a b2b sales resume and cover letter that will open doors for you
– 7 things you should NOT do on your resume
– 5 steps to access the hidden job market
– What to include on your LinkedIn profile so you get noticed by recruiters

If you are struggling, if you are not reaching your goals, or if you are not earning the income you want, ask yourself will you ever be able to in your current sales job. If you answered no you can’t, then download my webinar video recording, “How to Find Your Dream Sales Job!

“I have been on all 5 sessions and I have enjoyed every one. I have been in B2B sales for 10 years now and have attended training from lots of trainers and your material and delivery is among the best.”

If you would like a template to track your entire job search process, you can download the Job Search Tracking Worksheet for free from the B2B Sales Connections Download Centre. While you’re there, check out our free White Paper and webinar video,”How to Write An Effective B2B Sales Resume“.

Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success
B2B Sales Connections

Check out all of our sales and sales management training webinar videos here. They are available for instant download and viewing! Watch them as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause them anywhere to learn at your pace!

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

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The success of your sales agent channel will be determined by many different components: recruiting process, training programs, program management and your support structure to name a few. Based on our research and years of involvement on both sides of the agent channel business we have found that sales agent channels usually fail because of one or more of the following reasons. (more…)

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Here is a great interview from Canada AM about the power that teachers and mentors play when mastering any skill, including sales.

You need to know where to focus your self improvement efforts; you need drive; you need regular practice and most importantly you need a teacher/mentor to help you get there.

If you would like to discuss how a sales coach and mentor can help you hone your sales skills, schedule a free strategy session with me here.
Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success and Action Plan For Sales Management Success

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

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B2B Sales Connections Motivational QuoteOver the past few weeks, and by pure coincidence, I have been fortunate to be coaching two sales professionals as they start their transitions into the last third of their careers. They both ran and then sold successful businesses, their kids are now through school, and their mortgages are all paid off.  Neither are ready to retire, but both mentioned they are struggling to figure out what will drive them next.

Working with these two individuals reminded me that, no matter what stage you are in your career, you need to have a reason to jump out of bed in the morning ready and raring to go.  We all may define success differently, but the important thing is to define it. (more…)

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Take your first step to sales success!

Set a goal, take your first step towards it, and before you know it, you start to wear out your shoes!

And if you think sales reports are a waste of time, or that tracking your activity doesn’t work, try wearing a Fitbit!

Martin Luther King once said, “You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”

Aim Higher!

Susan A. Enns, B2B Sales Coach and Author of Action Plan For Sales Success and Action Plan For Sales Management Success

“I love the B2B Sales Connections website. It is an amazing resource for anyone involved in B2B selling.”

More motivational quotes in our free Sales Resources Centre.

Like this Quick Sales Tip? Then you should check out our sales and sales management training webinar videos. They are available for instant download and viewing! Watch them as often as you like, whenever you find it convenient, and pause them anywhere to learn at your pace!

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