However, it’s almost as likely that they’ll pay an enormous amount of money, spend an entire week and frustrate the sales personnel. This is because planning a successful national sales conference is more complex than just renting a conference venue and reciting a couple of memos. In order to achieve lasting results, you must have an event that is filled with details and motivation… an event that makes attendees feel eager to get out to meet new customers instead of feeling bored and wishing they had the chance to return home.
This is the reason why, and since I’ve attended a lot of sales meetings to observe what is working, here are some of the most frequent mistakes and the best methods to stay away from them:
#1. Being unfocused:
I frequently advise salespeople to steer clear of what I refer to as “the dump-truck routine.” Even if you’re unfamiliar with my terminology, I’m sure you’ve experienced it at work; it’s when a salesperson starts with facts and other information to potential buyers, one after the other, in hopes that they’ll finally make a statement that triggers an impulse purchase.
You’re probably aware that this method doesn’t sell anything. But what you should recognize is that it’s not just salespeople who are commissioned that commit this error. A lot of executives and managers regularly overwhelm their sales team with ideas that aren’t really new, thinking that distributing a plethora of ideas and concepts will increase the chance that they’ll be able to come up with something valuable.
However, in reality, it often results in the opposite. In the best case, throwing too much information at your sales team will cause them to be confused. In the worst case, it can make them tune out the noise. When you plan your sales conference, choose only three or two key topics that must be addressed or discussed, and plan your sessions and materials around these. It’s tempting to attempt to focus on more issues, but it will only result in watering down the final outcome.
#2. The big picture is missing:
Do your team’s sales representatives have a process that they practice and follow? Are they generating leads on a regular basis, assessing prospective buyers, and negotiating reasonable margins with their customers? If you can answer one or all of those concerns can be “no,” then you are probably not required to train them in sophisticated closing or fret about perfecting their database skills. Instead, you must focus on the basics.
I’ve witnessed a lot of businesses that spend vast sums of budgets on complicated lead tracking systems, only to find that their sales reps don’t know how to solicit the order or spend many working days on intelligent strategies for motivation, even though their sales team isn’t able to deliver an efficient and effective presentation. These errors are easily spotted when you look back. However, it’s difficult to see the forests when you’re eager to try the latest technique or tool. If you’re looking to make the difference you want to complete in the future, sales numbers ensure that you’re providing your employees the proper tools to achieve their goals, not the ones that appear most appealing on a spreadsheet.
#3. Not taking the meeting in the seriousness… or taking the discussion too seriously… severe enough:
Salespeople, by nature, are social creatures. The national sales conference isn’t just an opportunity to learn new ideas and ideas, but also to meet many familiar faces as well as reconnect with old acquaintances. Take into account that some attendees may have to travel quite a distance to be there and squeeze a whole week’s worth of work in just a few days in order to enjoy some time off, and you can observe how excessive (or too intense) sessions could have adverse effects.
However, the national sales conference is one that has real value to the business. It’s not enough to hand out some brochures, talk about some inspiring things, and then send everyone to a meal at a restaurant. It is equally important to show gratitude for your team’s sales; you must be careful not to give the wrong impression when you treat the event as an ordinary field day. Recognize and celebrate the achievements of your team, but do so in a way that inspires the team to make more sales in the future.
#4. Failure to get feedback:
The annual sales meeting for your company is not only a one-way conversation. Once you’ve got all of your team members together, you should take the time to research what your business could be doing to help members of the sales force. Do they require new or different tools, improved communication from other departments, or even to relay the most frequent client complaints and requests? Sales meetings are the ideal venue for them, not just because people can express their concerns in person; however, the ideas or experiences of one person could inspire a concept or idea from someone else.
Receiving comments from your sales staff isn’t necessarily an official affair. In fact, anonymous questionnaires or other writing techniques can yield accurate responses since it allows your employees the opportunity to share their thoughts without having to be public.
Key Sales Management Point:
With a concentration and care plan, your national sales conference can inspire your team to go further than they have ever before. Remember these suggestions, and you’ll create an event that’s as profitable it is efficient.