The pace of customer decisions seems to be tapering off and despite relentless efforts, salespeople are finding it challenging to meet their quota.
However, in my conversations with senior sales executives, a deeper issue seems to be at play here.
They share that their sales teams are not feeling the hunger for value maximization for customers nor the pain of not meeting their own sales quotas.
They are competent, but risk being complacent.
Today, I will spotlight four often-overlooked signs that suggest your sales team might be settling into a ‘comfort zone’.
Think of these as red flags to watch out for.
1.The Same Leads Keep Popping Up
Reflect on your recent sales huddles.
Notice any recurring themes?
Is the same data being churned over and over again?
It’s time for you to ask – what’s going on?
When you do, most likely it will be met with confused faces and excuses.
This repetitive cycle might hint at a stagnating pipeline or the absence of new opportunities – either way, it’s a wake-up call.
2.Tipping the Scale Towards Easy Leads
Chart the origin of your recent leads.
Is a disproportionate number stemming from legacy clients?
While it’s always good to get repeats & referrals, the balance should tilt towards proactive sourcing too.
When the flow from existing clients suddenly stops or isn’t sufficient to hit your quota, it leads to an urgent scramble.
Cultivating an active, outbound pipeline is crucial to staying ahead of the curve.
3.Smaller Deals vs. Larger, Transformational Deals
Scrutinize the proposals your team has been presenting.
Are they leaning more towards routine transactions rather than larger transformational deals?
Are you seeing smaller deals in the pipeline, rather than larger, transformational multi-horizon deals?
It’s time for them to stop playing it safe.
Every pitch is a chance to transact or transform.
They have to go the extra mile.
4.Engaging with Mid-Level Managers over Top Executives
Who’s on your team’s speed dial?
Is your sales team interacting with mid-tier contacts instead of top-level executives?
Maybe, it is with the CxO – 2 or CxO – 1 level, but not necessarily with the decision-makers.
Building bridges across all organizational levels is necessary but the top tier should always be in focus.
A golden rule?
“One CXO meeting every day until infinity for everybody in the sales team”
If you’re experiencing this, it’s a call to action for leadership.
In your next review, sit with them and understand who they are meeting and if the client is proposing any concrete next steps.
Acknowledging the problem is the first step in solving it.
In my experience, complacency, when left unaddressed, can erode an organization’s performance over time.
We owe it to ourselves, our teams, and our clients to stay proactive, engaged, and ambitious.
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