Newton's Third Law: To every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Science has helped humans to better understand the world that we live in and engineers to design ways of improving our lives with modern tech and conveniences. Why not apply scientific methodologies to our sales efforts so that we can better predict the likelihood of sales success within our teams with leading indicators? I call this the "Science of Sales", after all, excellent Sales Leadership and Management blends business science with human leadership (H.U.M.A.N.™ Sales Management). What if the sales profession had physical laws that allowed us to better understand our sales surroundings and measure the likelihood of sales success?
It does and the science of sales is increasing every day with advances in ai and automation. In reality, predicting results with leading indicators is unique to your business and requires creativity. There are almost endless leading indicator options. However, the key to successful measurement is finding or creating leading indicators that make sense for your business and team.
Leading indicators in the sales function are a great way for managers to gain insights into sales performance before sales performance is recorded on the income statement. The challenge for many organizations whether small, medium, or large is understanding which leading indicators are the most impactful.
It is also possible to create Leading Indicators for predicting marketing success. I like to refer to marketing success as any activity that helps to generate a qualified first appointment with a target prospect. Of course, there is always overlap and hopefully collaboration. I will address these leading indicators in another blog posting.
Think of it this way:
Here are a few leading indicators for predicting sales performance that I have had success implementing and measuring throughout my career.
- 1st Appointments Scheduled
- 1st Appointments Advanced
- Attitude & Energy
- Deal Progression
- Demo's Scheduled
- Deal Revenue Forecast
- New Items Sold to Current Customers
- Quote and Product Diversity
- Margin Integrity
- New Relationships Started
Exercise: Take a few minutes to brainstorm five leading indicators to predict sales for your business.
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