Sales target planning, with any sales team, starts with the sales manager knowing what each sales consultant is capable of.
With that information in-hand, the sales manager schedules a meeting with each sales consultant. This is the beginning of the three E’s to effective goal setting .
- Expectations – a one-on-one meeting with each sales consultant. The purpose of the meeting is to review what is expected for the coming sales year.
- Execution – a follow-up meeting where the sales manager and sales consultant agree on a the salesperson’s plan-of-action.
- Evaluation – the sales manager monitoring the progress of each sales consultant. Support or coaching is provided where required to help the sales consultant achieve the agreed upon sales target.
The focus of this post is the first E – expectations.
Sales Target Planning Step 1 Expectations
Meeting Number One – Information
Sales target planning is achieved through a three meeting goal setting sequence. It starts with the sales manager and sales consultant mapping out expectations.
For the first sales target planning meeting, the sales manager could meet individually with each automobile salesman. It is recommended the first meeting be held with all sales consultants present. This is to ensure everyone gets the same sales target planning message.
In the meeting, the sales manager:
- shares the coming year’s sales targets,
- informs the team about the one-on-one sales target planning meetings,
- handles (to the sales manager’s satisfaction) questions that may come up about the process,
- requests sales consultant have what they see as their sales targets ready for the one-on-ones.
Meeting Number Two – Review Sales Goals
The second meeting should be within three days of the first.
The purpose is to review the sales goals the automobile salesperson mapped out.
As the sale manager, focuses the discussion on…
- how the salesperson arrived at his or her goals,
- how the salesperson sees achieving their sales goals,
- assistance required from management,
- training that would be beneficial,
- strengths the salesperson could share with the team,
- what the Dealership could do better.
The sales manager’s role is to listen to what the salesperson is saying, clarify, and listen again.
This is not the meeting to agree or disagree with what the salesperson presents. It is not the meeting to offer suggestions or advice. This is the time champion automobile sales managers really listen to the salespeople.
Conclude the meeting thanking the salesperson for the input and schedule the third meeting.
If a salesperson is not on board with the goal setting process, address it as required. If the salesperson is belligerent, you need to consider the future of this person in the Dealership.
Meeting Number Three – Presenting the Targets
Between your second and third meeting, review the sales targets the salesperson left with you:
- based on the salesperson’s experience and skill are they realistic?
- is there some stretch?
- do they need to be adjusted (up or down)?
- do they make an acceptable contribution to the Dealership target?
Adjust the targets as needed. Leave time for some discussion. There is no room for negotiation. Ensure the salesperson understands these sales targets are minimum standard. They are what the minimum the sales consultant is expected to achieve.
In the next post, I’ll review the Execution and Evaluation steps involved in sales target planning.
Remember: Nothing happens until someone sells something.
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