There has been much written about the importance of having a written sales process. I wholeheartedly agree. It is essential to modern sales to have a proven process that guides the sales professional from initial identification through the successful sale. However, how many of you have an actual “checklist” to ensure the process is followed and each step is completed?
While a “checklist” might appear to be an inflexible tool let me assure you that it is not my intention to promote such a process. Rather, a checklist is a great tool to ensure that you have covered the bases for each opportunity as you proceed. There are times, as we all know, an opportunity does not unravel as we intend, so flexibility in your approach is essential. However, when you consider the average sales professional is working on multiple opportunities simultaneously, and each opportunity is in a different phase of development, is there anyway, with certainty, to know which tasks have been completed? A checklist eliminates the guesswork to ensure you are always putting your best foot forward and maximizing your time.
I have developed a standard sales process checklist. You can access it for free. I would recommend “personalizing” it before either using it or distributing it to your team. By personalizing I mean be sure to compare the items to your current sales process. Do they align? Are there any missing or repetitive items that need to be edited? Once completed, try it for a few weeks and then revisit the checklist to make any necessary tweaks to ensure it best serves you and your team. Like any other tool, you want to update and improve it over time.
Initial Call to Confirm Appointment
(Opportunity to ask, “So I am properly prepared” question).
Email Calendar Meeting Invitation and Agenda
Send LinkedIn Invitation
(After acceptance, verify any shared connections)
Conduct Initial Research on Point of Contact and Company
Send Thank You
Prepare Recommendation and Present
Schedule Demonstration or Site Visit
Present Contract Terms & Conditions for Review
Receive Signed Agreement
Send Thank You
Ask for Introductions and Referrals