You may not want to think about it, but it’s a fact all sales managers must own up to: 2017 is right around the corner. Even though you’re working on wrapping up Q4, you should also start prepping your sales team for Q1. Starting the year on a high note can mean the difference between exceeding your goals for 2017 and coming up short. Here are some strategies you can use to lay the groundwork for success next year.
Hold A 2016 Year-In-Review Meeting
This time of year is critical for meeting goals, but it can also be a slow time for making deals. Clients and prospects aren’t answering their phones, and reps can spend a lot of time shuffling paper. This is the perfect time to schedule a year-in-review meeting in which you go over what went right and what went wrong in 2016.
Don’t lecture. Rather, deconstruct the year with input and from the group. Learn what they think about the successes and failures of the year, and ask them what they need from leaders in 2017 in order to succeed. Take what you learn in that meeting and make the necessary changes to processes and procedures.
Update Aging Systems
If your fiscal year is about to end, make sure to get your requests in for updated systems and new technologies. The right applications can turn a stagnant team into an agile team. Do your research and put your budget together accordingly. If you are in the middle of the fiscal year, you can still work on your list now, so that it’s ready to go for the next budget.
Assess Your Culture
Culture can have a big impact on a sales team’s morale, and morale has a big impact on productivity. What type of culture are you fostering? The overarching organizational culture is important, but so is the culture within the team. Work with HR to make culture a priority in the upcoming year.
Talk About Goals
Go ahead and unveil your goals for 2017 now so that the team starts thinking about the adjustments they will need to make to achieve that goal. Have individual meetings to discuss each rep’s goals and help them develop strategies for success.
Make A Hiring Plan
The end of the year often brings with it some harsh realities that can lead to hard choices. This is the time of year when it becomes painfully obvious who on your team doesn’t quite have what it takes to succeed. However, it’s not enough just to part ways with struggling reps. You also must develop a plan for hiring the rock stars who will drive goal achievement in 2017.
Effective sales managers lead effective teams, but that sales team must have the right skills and talent for success. If you are looking for new ways to attract and retain top sales professionals in 2017, the expert recruiters at CSS can help. Contact us today to learn more about the ways in which we can help grow, build and expand your team and get you on the path to success in the coming year.