Sales Managers Shouldn’t Monitor Activity

Does this look like the same tuna that comes in a can?

Does this look like the same tuna that comes in a can?

Anybody can read a recipe, mix the ingredients, and end up with the same edible meal. A great chef can use the same recipes, same ingredients, and come up with something truly remarkable. You can’t judge a chef on their recipes… you judge them on their results.

The same is true with salespeople.

Most sales managers look for something they can track like calls, appointments or proposals. This makes their life easier because it allows them to compare salespeople’s performance to each other. The problem is none of that matters. The only thing that matters is the revenue or the margin that a salesperson generates; who cares if it takes ten calls or a thousand calls to bring in the big deal? Great salespeople do things that aren’t tracked by systems: build and maintain strong relationships with clients, educate themselves continuously, and guide their customers through the buying process.

Simply giving salespeople the “recipe” isn’t enough. Great sales managers look for the unique traits in individual salespeople and then work with them to capitalize on those traits to help them achieve something truly remarkable. This could be providing them executive support, cutting the internal red tape, or minimizing reporting.

One Moore Thing: Monitoring activity is a cop out for sales managers. Instead, monitor the outcome and do the hard work to help the salespeople in your organization achieve greatness.