Conscious competence/incompetence – A critical capability to demonstrate whether you are running an SMB or Enterprise sales organization. The first way to shorten your tenure as a sales leader is to not have the answers to what happened and why, when asked for a review of performance. Follow our sales metrics cheat sheet below and you will find a much longer runway to work with.
Sales Metrics Cheat Sheet Infographic
Getting to the insights requires a partnership with sales operations and are surfaced in the following forums:
Schedule Formal Quarterly Business Reviews (QBRs)
If your company is not currently running QBRs, then take the lead and establish them for the sales organization.
There are two levels of QBR:
Sales Management QBRs (Assumes more than 1 sales leader within the org)
The overarching purpose here is to ensure that every sales leader can see the forest above the trees and is aligned in terms of what needs to be done in the quarter ahead. The executive sales leader should be having a similar meeting with their inter-departmental peers.
Objectives and key questions:
- Ensure that the operating/strategic plan assumptions remain valid.
- Are assumptions around market, product, team, customers and operations correct?
- Have we had any strategic changes (EG We choose to ignore small business and focus on F5000)?
- Are there new macro conditions (Competitors/Partners/Economic/funding etc.)?
- Is our sales GTM still valid (Geo’s, roles, channels)?
- Average ACV, Sales cycle and win rates all conforming to plan?
- Understand variance to plan (The key is understand – If you are off plan, then why and what will you do about it?).
- Are we hiring at the appropriate velocity?
- Is attainment at the levels we modeled?
- Is variance due to individual specific factors or macro concerns like product or TAM?
- What are the primary loss/win reasons?
- How are our people doing?
- How is our employee engagement?
- What is the state of our employer brand for sales?
- What is attainment like across the team? Changes required for enablement?
- What do ramp profiles look like? IE Time to first deal and time to full quota
Sales Team QBRs
Sales team business reviews are very similar to a sales kick-off (SKO) in that they should serve to Inspire, Align and Educate.
There are 3 critical parts of a sales QBR.
A small part of the QBR should be dedicated to training and certification – My assumption being that you are following best practice and conducting continuous micro-learning using a platform like SalesHood to keep your reps on point. It is a great time to certify people with demos/presentations or other role plays because you typically have everyone together. Remote teams can do it via video.
2. Individual reviews
Each AE should be provided with a template to present the following to their peers and management:
- Monthly results vs plan
- My win:loss rate for the quarter (IE How much of the pipe I had at the start of the quarter was closed won?)
- Profile of my deals: Average MRR/ARR, Largest deal, Industries (If relevant)
- Learnings from losses (Primary loss reasons and what I will do differently)
- My pipeline for next quarter compared to my close ratio (What actions do I need to take?)
- Summary of my key deal(s) for next quarter
If the business is high velocity (>4 deals per month), then AEs should also present the following metrics:
- # Calls, # emails, # meetings, # Opps created
3. Macro/Team Review
There are four key areas to share with the team:
A. Team attainment for previous quarter and outlook for the quarter ahead.
B. Deal segment success rates
(Size, Industry, Use case): It is critical for us to understand that we are pointing our people at the right target. By using sophisticated analytics tools we can gain get critical insights to find things like:
Image courtesy of InsightSquared
C. Stage conversions: Are we losing deals predominantly at a certain stage?
Image courtesy of InsightSquared
D. Win rates by competitor
Knowing where your competitors are closing or losing their deals as best as you can is key to enhancing your process and finding out what advantages you are up against.
This may be difficult to find out, but getting any insight into how you’re getting beat will go a long way toward helping your refine your game. That’s why we developed this sales metrics cheat sheet to guide you along the way.
Compiling and tracking a lot of this data is simple once you build the infrastructure and habits to get your teams thinking about it with each prospect. Remember to educate and train as you go along. That way, the thinking about these questions and cataloging of data becomes routine and expected. Use our sales metrics cheat sheet to help!
Pull these metrics into your sales culture and see how their application improves performance and understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of your organization.