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The fastest and easiest way to improve your bottom line is to move all your employees up to your own best practice, according to Jonathan Byrnes in his book Islands of Profit in a Sea of Red Ink. Byrnes will be featured in the free MDM Webcast, Selling for Profit: How to Maximize Profitability through Targeted Market Development, on Thursday, May 10. The program, the third in a quarterly series, is free and sponsored by Epicor.
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Byrnes will be addressing how companies can sell for profit – focusing on two critical levers: sales management and market development.
One of the topics he’ll talk about is codifying best practices in your sales force. In his book, Byrnes says that companies take for granted that their companies have A players, B players and C players, especially in their sales force. But distributors should not take this as inevitable.
Any business process – including sales – can be codified and taught to employees of average ability so that they can perform at a higher level, he says. In his research, he’s found that the best-performing sales reps actually have a methodical and very similar view of how to penetrate new accounts. However, B and C players had widely varying processes. The A reps’ approach is the best practice, and Byrnes says that their systematic approach can be taught to the rest of the team through a seven-part process that includes identifying the best practice, codifying it, training, coaching, measuring, compensating based on that process, and implementing ongoing improvements.
“The absence of systematic best practice knowledge and process-specific training creates the great variance in sales performance that so many companies experience,” Byrnes writes.