Posted by Mike Carroll ● Mon, Jan 3, 2011 @ 11:01 AM

2011 Sales Resolutions for Presidents, CEOs and Business Owners

CEO Sales ExpectationsIt’s the first week of a brand new year and your “To Accomplish List” has already hit a second page.  Before you get too busy, ask yourself if 2011 will be the year you choose to do things differently with sales and business development.  What can you do to make sales better this year?  To drive growth with new and existing accounts?  To increase margins?  To improve customer retention?  To gain market share?  To increase the value of your company?

It’s easy to lose sight of these issues as you hustle from meeting to meeting.  The start of a new year gives you an excellent opportunity to take a step back and think about what you want to accomplish.  So in addition to trying to lose weight, exercise more or read some fiction, we humbly suggest the following Four (4) Sales Resolutions for Presidents, CEOs and Business Owners:

1.       Raise Your Expectations – when I talk with Presidents, CEOs and Business Owners it usually takes just a few questions to help them realize they have relatively low expectations of their sales team.  If you want 2011 to be your best sales year ever, your first sales resolution is to raise your expectations for the sales department and hold them to a higher standard.

2.       Raise Their Expectations – once you’ve raised your expectations, let your sales leaders and the entire sales team know about it.  Everyone in the sales department should know that “good enough” isn’t going to work anymore and should have a clear understanding of where they need to focus their time, talent and energy.

3.       Set Clear Targets – now that you have raised expectations, get specific by setting clear targets for your sales team.  Identify what you want the sales team to focus on –whether it’s a new market or ideal client, a specific goal for margin or volume, a certain number of new appointments per week, a target for renewing existing clients – whatever it is be very clear and specific about the three to four targets you want the sales team to focus on.

4.       Hold them Accountable – hold your sales leaders and the entire sales team accountable to following through on your new targets and higher standards 100% of the time.  It only takes one exception to ruin the momentum you’re trying to build this year.  Remember the most important part of accountability is defining consequences – both good and bad – for everyone on the sales team.

Would you like some help with this process?  We have prepared a CEO Sales Expectations worksheet for you to download.  Schedule some time with yourself this week to focus on raising your sales expectations for 2011, before another “typical” sales year just happens (again).

Topics: Prospecting, Customer Service, Cold Calling, sales process, strategy