Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Benchmarking Information for Fresh Ideas

When you are in a period of significant growth, it may be tempting to keep riding the wave and assume that you must be doing everything right. In many sales organizations, this is the norm. While it seems natural to avoid trying to fix what isn’t broken, you may be missing opportunities and new ideas by not taking time to gather benchmarking information.

Benchmarking information can give your managers new ideas. Even if you are currently growing your business with the tried-and-true metrics, compensation plans, sales promotions and other techniques, you may still be able to improve what you are doing by getting familiar with the sales strategies of another company.

Here are a few reasons why benchmarking another company every two to three years may benefit your sales team:

  1. You may receive confirmation that some of your techniques are solid sales strategies that are also employed by other leaders in your industry. Seeing another company using similar plans that you rely on may give you some much-needed confirmation that you are on the right track.
  2. Benchmarking information can help you get insight on a range of compensation plan ideas and other organizational components. Learning how another sales team organizes regular meetings, for example, may help you see benefits of another structure for sharing sales updates.
  3. Benchmarking information helps you get some fresh ideas. You may not only be able to pick up a specific new technique or strategy, but even getting outside of your normal environment can get your creativity revving. You may be able to brainstorm some new ideas simply because you got out of your office and into a new place.
  4. Even if you walk away from the other organization without a specific plan to implement in your own sales team, it may instead give you a sense of pride in how well your sales team is doing.

There are also a few tips for making sure you get the most benefit out of your benchmarking experience:

  1. Don’t get bogged down trying to find an exact match in both industry and size of the organization. Your best ideas may be the result of spending time with a company that is significantly different than yours to gather benchmarking information.
  2. Spend at least one full day with the organization. Don’t expect that a couple of hours will give you a true picture of the tools that are leading the sales team to growth and success.
  3. Be strategic in how you spend your time there. Take time, for instance, to watch the inside sales team in action. These interactions will tell you a lot about how the sales process is formed in the company.

Benchmarking information is a critical part of ensuring that your sales team is performing at its best possible level. Front Row Solutions can help your company identify measures that will lead to growth and opportunities and then show you how our customer relationship management tools can support that growth.