Are you a data dictator?
If you have an iron grip on access to your sales data, you might be.
You need to loosen up a little, and allow others to experience the power of data analytics. Sales data isn’t meant to be hoarded by the C-Suite and sales management alone — it should be shared equally across your entire sales team.
The deep understanding you have of the sales organization can have benefits far beyond leadership. Data can help every sales rep on your team better understand their own sales performance, track changes over time, and look for areas they can improve.
Having sales reps diagnose their own strengths and weaknesses in the sales process is vital to their growth — but it’s tough to do without putting the data directly in their hands. Here’s why you need to be more transparent and democratize your sales data.
Share the Data Wealth
Giving sales reps access to sensitive business information sounds a little scary at first, but the benefits are worth the risks. Take precautions and make sure every rep signs documents promising to keep the data private, but then allow them free reign. Give sales reps access to information about every lead, every deal won or lost, and every dollar coming in or going out of the business.
This commitment to transparency will be appreciated by your sales team, who will feel as though they’re valued by the organization and included in high-level decision making. It will offer reps a deeper understanding of the overall business operations, which will improve how they approach selling your product. Democratized data is also incredibly useful for communication between management and sales teams. Instead of questioning decisions by management to change the sales process or alter talk tracks, you’ll be able to point to the freely-available data to explain every decision clearly and easily.
Empower Your Reps to be “Mini-CEOs”
In addition to improving communication, data transparency will also drive sales performance. With data on-hand, sales managers, Sales VPs and CEOs shouldn’t be the only ones tracking sales performance metrics obsessively. Encourage everyone across your team to constantly monitor their own personal performance metrics. Each of your sales reps should think of themselves as a mini-CEO — trying to run their own business and close the maximum amount of revenue. This means they should fully understand their own sales metrics, including:
With each new piece of data, reps will be able to better understand how their actions today lead to results tomorrow. They’ll be able to directly track how making 20 calls and giving 10 demos led to a jump in conversion rates later in the month, and a higher win rate.
Make Decisions by the Numbers
With a better understanding of performance metrics comes better decision-making in the long term. Instead of reps on your sales team making decisions about opportunities based on a “good feeling” about a sales conversation, they’ll be making decisions based on rock-solid evidence. They’ll be able to start acting like data scientists, tweaking talk tracks and changing sales tactics to test out new hypotheses. Reps will be able to see the results of their efforts in a higher win rate and better conversion rates down the sales funnel.
By tracking results by the numbers, you’ll see massive changes across your sales team. Data allows reps to pinpoint where in the sales funnel they are weakest, and make a concerted effort to improve their sales results. Each rep will begin to better understand their personal strengths, and weaknesses, and be more open to sales coaching to improve their selling skills. Sharing data openly will push reps to make better, data-driven decisions.
Don’t hoard your sales data. Democratize your data and allow reps on your sales team to understand management decisions, see their own sales performance metrics, and make data-driven decisions.