So you've got a meeting with your sales manager coming up soon and you already know what the topic of discussion is going to be- your below average win rate. We all know the feeling, "how am I supposed to know why marketing doesn't provide me better leads?" Well before you drop that excuse, we'd
like to share our experiences on the 3 things your boss really wants to know about your win rates.
1. Why Are They So Low?
You're going to be asked some variation of this question by your sales manager. You can give the average answer of "my deals just don't close" but if you want to be a standout sales performer, you will need to be a little more critical of your output. In order to understand why your deals aren't closing you'll need to look into why your deals push, why you have deals that with abnormally long cycle times, and the reasons you end up with 'close-lost' deals.
2. What Are You Doing About It?
Now that you've done the hard work of doing an autopsy on your pipeline and have identified the contributing issues to your win rates, you can confidently come up with a plan to address the deals that are holding you down. For those stalled deals with long cycle times, you will want to convey to your manager that you have a clear and direct reengagement plan. To be clear, if your stalled deals don't have a next meeting date set and on a calendar, then you need to go make sure you get that next meeting scheduled. For all the other deals, you need to let your happy ears tendencies go and qualify them out. If a deal's expected close date has pushed more than once, it's time to give them the ultimatum and stop being strung along. If you don't know the specific reasons why your deals ended up in the 'close-lost' column, try reaching back out to the main contact on that deal and doing a post-mortem. Having the knowledge of why your deals don't win will be important in answering the last question.
3. How Will You Keep Them High?
Now that you've shown your boss that you have a full understanding of the issue and have a strategy on how to fix your win rate, you have the upper hand in proving you know how to keep your win rates high. If your sales team is lacking a sales process, this is a good time to suggest one. CSO Insights found that sales teams with sales processes perform up to 25% better than teams without one when it comes to quota attainment. While creating a sales process can be a bit of work, working without one won't do you win rates any favors. The second thing you can do to assure your boss that your win rates will remain high is to make a commitment to keeping information on your deals constantly up-to-date. It might seem like a tedious or unnecessary activity to make a core part of your job but Aberdeen has done research and found that "42% of all sales organizations cite inaccurate or insufficient data as a primary barrier to achieving analytics-driven forecasting". So if nothing else, know that committing to being a steward of good data will make your sales manager very happy.
With the knowledge you need to attack those three questions, you are already well on your way to higher win rates. Now you can go into that meeting with your sales manager filled confidence and optimism.