Your Lead Generation Team’s Productivity and Conversions Need to be Exposed — Daily!
In recent posts, I’ve given advice about ways of maintaing accountability within your sales organization, and more specifically as it pertains to your lead generation function. This week, I’m going to continue with that trend, because each week it becomes more clear that those teams that expose their lead qualification reps’ daily performance to management (and obviously one another on the team), are far more productive and ultimately successful than those who only expose it maybe once a week, month, or quarter.
I’ve seen some lead gen teams (including the company in the portfolio that I worked for a couple years back) actually require an end-of-day email update coming directly from the lead gen rep. In my case, the update included number of calls made, number of conversations had, demos set, and a quick synopsis of the conversations that resulted in demos, as well as any impediments that held me back that day. The end-of-day report took me about 15-20 minutes to write (depending on the demos set, and the amount of detail pertaining to those conversations that I wrote), and I sent it to both the venture partners at OpenView as well as the management team at the portfolio company, including the CEO. There were some days that I felt it was burden (particularly on those days when I didn’t have anything too wonderful to report), but at the end of the day, it kept me incredibly accountable to what I committed to when I accepted the job offer, and you better believe that I kept myself incredibly organized and highly productive each and everyday to make my end-of-day report as impressive as possible.
Plus, there was honestly NOTHING better than having a great day and getting a reply-all from the CEO telling me “Great job today!” Or even having a day when I didn’t set any demos but left 50 voicemails and felt mentally exhausted, but still had a venture partners say — “Keep your head up, the demos will come with that type of activity!”
Don’t want your rep spending the last chunk of the day writing out this kind of report? Hey, it’s not for everyone or every manager. In fact, there is another great option. Have an automated email sent every evening coming from Salesforce.com (or whatever CRM you are using while wishing you are on Salesforce) that pulls your team’s daily productivity dashboard. If you are slick, you can also have your messaging dashboard sent to management and marketing (I discuss the messaging dashboard in this post).
If you’ve hired competitive, hardworking, and driven individuals this end-of-day update will be on their mind and keep them focused. “Hmm…I could watch this 10-minute long YouTube video that my friend sent me, but it’s 3pm and I’ve only made 20 calls, had 3 conversations, and set no demos today — maybe I should watch it later.”
You might be reading this and thinking — wow, Devon seems a little OCD. Hey, I’ve heard worse. But, let’s be serious. Outbound lead qualification is a VERY expensive form of marketing for your business, and there are a LOT of distractions that could pull your team away from being productive. I’m assuming that you, as the manager, are juggling 100 balls because you are working at an expansion-stage organization. Why not find some simple ways to keep accountability high so that you don’t have to be breathing down everyone’s neck everyday? Let these updates push your reps to better manage themselves.
Do you have a rep who is really turned off by an end-of-day report (handcrafted or automated)? First of all, that’s a red flag. What does he/she have to hide?! Second of all, for a relatively junior role within the organization (and I’m not saying entry level – because in most cases, 2-4 years experience is IDEAL for this role), honestly, what other opportunity do you get to have exposure to senior management and have them observing your hard work, commitment, drive and passion? I honestly believe that if I wasn’t sending my personal daily report as a lead qualifier a couple years back, I wouldn’t have received the promotion that I did after 6 months on the job because I wouldn’t have had that level of exposure to senior management!