Most people are not fans of tests. The thought of pass-fail sends chills up and down the spine. But let's face it - companies perform performance evaluations all the time and give out numbers that are nothing more than providing a grade based on the year-long test they just completed.
How does an organization go about evaluating, or “grading”, its sales force?
- It depends on who sets the benchmark. If evaluating against others in the industry, are you truly getting an accurate snapshot of potential? Recently my son had an eye-opening experience, moving from rec league soccer to travel soccer. His "grade" would be completely different in one league compared to the other because of the change in talent level. Now he knows where he really stands and this has caused him to re-commit and up his game.
- It depends on who is doing the evaluating. Is the evaluation biased based on who likes another person? Is a weak manager evaluating weak salespeople, therefore scores have a higher reading than reality?
- It depends on what areas you are evaluating. Are you evaluating their behavior, attitude, or technique? These three key areas are critical factors that lead to your team's success and allow for effective and efficient coaching.
The stronger the shepherd the stronger the sheep. If you really want to know how and why your team is performing at the level they are currently performing, evaluate leadership. How effective is leadership at the coach, trainer, mentor, and supervisory roles? Are the differences clear? Are they wearing the appropriate hat at the appropriate time?
If you want to take the first simple step in gaining clarity, evaluate your sales team here. The answer might surprise you either way.