Set it and forget it?
Set it and forget it!
How can you increase profitable sales while developing your team's capability to sustain success? The best sales leaders model the behavior they want adopted, set clear expectations and hold their team accountable.
It makes sense to examine how to set expectations and measure the results at the same time. Inspecting what you expect means not only double-checking to make sure that your expectations are clear, but also ensuring they help produce the results you are looking for.
One late-night infomercial for a miracle kitchen gadget from Ronco coined the phrase: "Set it and forget it!" It's catchy and sounds great. Set the timer, leave it alone and when you come back to the kitchen you have a complete dinner prepared.
Too bad this idea doesn't apply to business -- it's not simply a matter of setting goals and then waiting.
Can you imagine a sales manager starting out the quarter by saying "Here's your quota. See you at the end of the quarter!" Even though the message may not be so direct, this sort of behavior might actually sound familiar to some people.
On the other end of the spectrum, some micromanagers obsess over every detail of each deal. Salespeople may hesitate to put an opportunity in the pipeline for fear that they will be asked about incessantly until it is closed.
To continue on with the cooking analogy, "a watched pot never boils." By lifting a lid, you let the heat escape and it actually takes longer to reach temperature.
Managers who make their team spend a lot of time attending sales meetings and reporting on their progress may be taking away from time that they could be more productive. This is not always the case. Some meetings can be very productive and offer needed guidance.
The trick is finding the appropriate balance.
By clearly setting expectations, it is easier to hold your team accountable for their behavior and the results they produce. And you are less likely to be surprised by the results.