It's that time of year around the globe when the thoughts of most employees go towards preparing decorations for the upcoming holidays, planning parties and get together's with loved ones. One item, that is often unknowingly pushed to the back burner, are the plans needed to reach the goals set at the beginning of the year during this last quarter of 2017.
Re-focusing employee efforts, and focus, around this time of the year can be a struggle. Here are three quick tips to keep employees engaged and on target to reach the goals
# 1- Ask the Right Questions
One thing should be clear, 'are we on or off target to reach the goals if we maintain the current activity ?' As a leader in your organization you're not alone in asking this question. Recently a report was released identifying retailers and social media giants alike that are also struggling with closing the gap between setting and reaching the revenue goals this year.
Surprisingly the report, released by CheatSheet, included the social media powerhouse Twitter as a company on the watch list of 'will they close up show in 2018'? Now, Twitter isn't in the same category of needing to be acquired as the recently WholeFoods was and they are far from folding completely as we have seen with big box stores. However, as Bloomberg has pointed out with both users & revenue down during the second quarter of this year it would be wise to watch for what happens next.
Before you plan any rallies or roll out communications to your team as a way to encourage them to keep the pace over then next several weeks, knowing the right questions to ask first are key. Questions such as:
- Which prospects can be closed now vs. will require additional nurturing and following up? For the leads that will require more time set a plan to do just that while you also place the leads that can be closed now as the priority.
- What are the top three reasons prospects previously declined to do business with you? The important element for this group of prospects will be those that you had heavy engagement with but they still declined to work with you.
#2- Get Ready to Push
This is not the time to get comfortable and that needs to be said to your team. A few weeks back we released an article that spoke to defining the culture of the company. In short, in any organization everyone is in sales & everyone needs to know how they contribute to the company. What would this look like? The internal support team has to continually sell the outside sales team of their ability to support them. While the sales team has to constantly gain trust from both new and existing customers that your company is the right solution to feel their needs.
Over the next few weeks this statement will never be more true than it is right now. In order for your company to not just finish 2017 in the black but the momentum you build now will propel you into 2018. So, how do you get ready to push? Read on to tip # 3.
#3- Before You Push Be Prepared
The right support will make all the difference. It is business as usual for most companies to ramp up their marketing by sending out massive communications to their customers. What we have found is that most companies are missing a few key elements within the internal processes to not only support the customer response but to also be in a position to handle incremental growth. Here are a few items to assess of your internal process to ensure you deliver a winning experience to your customer that continues to build the relationship & turns them into a referral ambassador for your company.
- Response Time- One of the deadly flaws companies face is a lag in responding to customer inquires and/ or complaints. Do you need to hire more people? Maybe. But, prior to running a job ad review why customers are calling you today. What are the top three questions they ask? Can you add a FAQ or 'needs to know' section to your website to address those questions.
- Do a Internal Audit- A desk audit doesn't have to take weeks to complete. Within a few hours of shadowing some of the customer facing team members you will be able to determine what additional training and support employees need in order to better serve your customers
- Give Employees Power- Do your employees know what authority they have to resolve a customer issue? Is their a standard rule or can they customize it based on the situation but in a way that doesn't discount your services too severely? By letting employees know what can be done to either close a sale or make a customer satisfied they have a bigger career investment into the success of the company.
What is the # 1 goal that your company is working to reach before the end of 2017? Unsure on a plan of action to make that happen? Schedule a consultation today by clicking here or email firstname.lastname@example.org