An effective sales force is an essential contributor to the sustained profitability associated with high performance. And yet a high proportion of sales forces are ineffective.
And yet a high proportion of sales forces are ineffective. The problem is twofold:
Too many sales people do not pull their weight: on average, the top 20 percent of company sales forces account for 62 percent of a company’s revenue.
Sales force turnover is too high, with nearly one in four having left their employers within the last year. Training new employees and getting them productive is hugely expensive in terms of money and time. It takes three to four times the headcount cost to train a new rep, and eight months to get him or her productive.
Attempts to improve sales force performance frequently fail because companies fail to integrate all three legs of the sales performance: competencies, behaviors and personality.