indicator .

Chasing Big Sales.

4 words for you...Be like David Attenborough.

Having inspired millions, there are many things we can learn from David Attenborough even when it comes to securing big sales, surprisingly.

Structure for the New Norm

Back in the days when social distancing was something we did after curry night and border control was a mid-week show on TV1, I spent some time with a company that was debating the structure of their sales team and the value that their salespeople were bringing to the organisation. The business was growing nicely but they questioned if this was based on their industry rather than the talents and efforts of their sales team. What we discovered was enlightening.

What lies ahead in 2020?

We have just undertaken our third Mood of the Sales Leader survey, which captures insights from NZ sales leaders around performance, challenges and expectations for the year ahead. Along with the expected findings, surveys always throw up surprises, and this year was no different.

What was the biggest challenge faced by NZ sales leaders in 2019? According to our latest Mood of the Sales Leader report, it was competition. What is the biggest risk to sales performance in 2020? Once again, the survey showed it is competition. View the full report 

Does one of these sound familiar?

I met someone a few years ago who told me his business was so successful that he couldn’t imagine it being any better. I didn’t believe him but told him if that was the case then he should sell it.

I have certainly never seen perfection, and I might struggle to say that I have seen the excellence that companies are apparently all looking to achieve.

One of the benefits of doing what we do is that we get to have a look under the hoods of many different companies to see who is doing well in the world of sales, and who isn’t doing particularly well.

Are you leaving a lot on the table

The MD of a company recently approached us and was frustrated with his sales team’s performance. He believed when he started the business he had more sales success than his team, even though he only spent 10 percent of his time on selling. He couldn’t understand why his team wasn’t performing better.

Another recent conversation was with the CEO of another business who was frustrated at the quality of the clients the sales team were introducing. Ostensibly there didn’t appear to be major issues as the business was growing nicely, but it was on the back of industry growth rather than quality sales work. Simple analysis showed the sales team spent a huge amount of their time visiting clients who were small and purchased tiny amounts, and had very little room for growth. Every time the salesperson visited these clients it was costing the company money. 

‘The clown, the rocket man and the family business’

There was recently a story in the media about an advertising man who took a clown into his redundancy meeting. While the meeting took place, the clown made balloon animals and when he was delivered his redundancy papers the clown pretended to cry.

There was also the story of the well-known NZ businessman (you will figure it out) who apparently walked into a meeting with heavy-hitting investors and dropped hundreds of bouncing balls onto the board room table. He then delivered his message to say this is how many rockets they are going to launch into space in the next few years.

We recently heard a story of the history of a 3rd generation NZ family business. It was a story many in this company and none of their clients had heard but talked about how the business began, and the twists and turns experienced on the way to creating what it is today.

Your Sales Team won’t outperform your Culture!

The Sales Syndicate community was recently treated to a workshop by corporate anthropologist, Michael Henderson.

Michael has a passion for unlocking the true potential of people and organisations. With more than 25 years’ experience working locally and internationally and as the author of 8 books on the subject, Michael knows a thing or two about culture.

Michael shared with us many significant and confronting messages. Most of us have heard the now famous Peter Drucker quote, ‘Culture eats strategy for breakfast’. But Michael is insistent that in his experience having the right culture is 8 times more important than strategy; particularly so with Sales Teams.

That raises a very good question. If culture is that important, then why don’t we as sales Leaders spend more time developing culture? Is it because we just don’t recognise the value of how important culture is or is it because we don’t know how to go about it?

What McDonald’s can teach us about sales process


We were fortunate recently to have Dean Mannix with us at Sales Syndicate who challenged us to think about ‘McDonald-ising’ our sales team.

From generation to generation McDonald’s keeps outperforming the competitors by running consistent processes that means a Big Mac is the same in Auckland as it is in Cairo, they ask us if we want fries with that in 119 countries and over 34,000 stores.

They have built a sales machine that has enabled them to scale.

Is your company a sales machine?  Do you have a set of systems and processes that allow your company to be better than your competitors and to create scalable and repeatable sales? Or, are you leaving your success to chance?

Are you focused on the top 3 disciplines in sales?

The most successful B2B sales people all focus on 3 key areas:

  1. Quantity
  2. Quality
  3. Focus

Incorporating these 3 disciplines into your daily, weekly and monthly activity will immediately separate you from the 50% plus of sales people who reportedly do not hit their targets. We see it time and again at our Sales Academy Programme that once sales people start focusing on these 3 key areas they start to unlock their real potential.

Mood of The Sales Leader – Mid-Year Reflections

Indicator has gained some valuable sales industry insights over the past three years, having worked with over 250 sales leaders, collectively responsible for over $8 billion in revenue.

To support our anecdotal findings, we surveyed 138 sales leaders during the 2017/2018 year to compile trends for the latest Mood of the Sales Leader survey.

Now, at the mid point of 2018, here are our five main reflections:

About Indicator

Indicator provides expert training and consulting for sales leaders and CEOs who want to transform their capability, performance and impact in the market – for their teams and organisations.

We bring together like-minded people and industry leaders through consultation, training courses and the Sales Syndicate – the monthly programme designed specifically for sales managers and sales leaders.