You’re being challenged every day as a business owner or business leader. There is never enough time in the day to complete what you know you need to. I’m no different.
Below are 5 questions I ask myself and I ask my clients regularly. If you’re like most people, it will be hard to say you have definitive answers for more than a couple of them.
1. What is the “value of the value” I provide my customers? How do I know this to be true?
When I say “value,” I mean, “How does what I provide my customers help them?” The value is not your cost. It’s the benefit the customer receives. Knowing this is key, as it allows you to understand who you need to be prospecting and where you can be of the most benefit.
2. What is the % of business I get that is a result of my salespeople creating the opportunity with the customer vs. merely getting what they give us?
This question stops everyone in their tracks, as we want to think our sales team is great, but far too often, the business they’re getting is because it’s being handed to them. I hate to sound cold, but that’s the real world. What you need are salespeople who do an outstanding job of listening, probing and punching through barriers to determine new opportunities that never would have been uncovered any other way.
3. What is the % of business we get each year by way of referrals from existing customers and is the trend growing?
A measurement of the quality of service any business provides is what current customers have to say about you. One way to measure this is by the referrals you receive because customers can’t stop talking about you. If this % is not on an upward trend year after year, then it means something is not working right in how you deal with customers.
4. If our biggest customer were to leave, what would we need to do to replace their business and how long would it take?
Go ahead and admit it. This is a question you really don’t want to think about, but you sure have thought about if you have ever had it happen. Regardless of the business you’re in and regardless of how good you think your customers are, it will happen. It’s not a matter of if; it’s a matter of when. And it’s best to be prepared for it when it does happen.
5. What is the margin potential in our pricing and what are the processes we use to measure this?
Of the 5 questions, this one can have the biggest impact on your bottom-line. How confident are you in your pricing? If you’re like most companies, there’s far too much “legacy thinking” in your pricing than you realize. The price you charge now is a reflection of the price you charged a few years ago, but why does it have to be that way?
Your price must reflect the value the customer receives and not your cost to produce. The stronger your sales organization is, the more margin potential you will have. This is a key reason to be investing in your sales organization. A key measurement you can look at is the % of business being done at full price or even above full price.
Are you guilty of spending all of your time working in the business and not spending anytime on the business? Business growth occurs not due to financial capital, but rather it grows due to intellectual capital. Maybe it’s time to be investing more in the intellectual resources of your company by starting to dig deep into these 5 questions.
And don’t forget that a coach can help you excel in your sales career! Invest in yourself by checking out my coaching program today!
Copyright 2018, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results