There is a lot of work that needs to be done in B2B sales right now. Especially on the first 90 days; from in the door to successful sale in record time.

For one in two sales, the cycle is seven months or more. The average tenure of a sales rep is 18 months.

So, whats the problem?

If youre not careful, it can take 18 months before a new rep is productive. That means that in reality, the average 7-month sales cycle will end up taking longer than 10 years.

Whats the solution?

If you want to get the most out of a new hire, make sure they reach full productivity in about three months.

I’m going to tell you how to set your new hires up for success before the first 90 days are over.

Lets dig in to the first 90 days. 

  • The Problem
  • Orientation
  • Coaching

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  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
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The Problem

In the first 90 days, there is a problem with the diversity of the workforce when you look at it more closely.

  • The average time for new hires to get up-to-speed is three months.
  • When a new hire is hired, it takes 8 months for them to become fully productive.
  • When you think about the fact that people have a limit on how much they can work, it becomes clear why seasonal employees are so important for some businesses.
  • With all this work, we need to figure out a way to take some time off. 
  • There are also some months where there is no business.
  • When you add up the high turnover for B2B sales, it makes sense why companies are hesitant to hire new employees.

Where does that leave us?

The average time for an employee to stay at a company is 18 months but it takes 3 months before they are performing their best. That leaves 15 months until the start of decline.

If the worker is not fully productive in 15 months, they would be at 8 months. After 5 more months of sub-par productivity, it will take 10 more to get back up to full productivity.

10 months 1 month vacation = 9 months

If you have a workforce of 100 people and 34% will leave in 8 months, that’s 6 productive months.

With a potential turnover of 55%, it would take 4 months to get back on track with productivity.(high turnover)

Oh. My. Gosh

When it comes to the first 90 days, theres a wide range in the amount of time we have left, depending on how things go. It could be as little as 4 months or it could be 6 months if everything goes well.

And the average B2B sales cycle is about 7 months. (Let that sink in for a minute.)

Heres how you solve the problem: smashing the first 90 days.

It’s important to have an orientation process with coaching so that new employees can be the most productive.

Orientation

Now is the time to set expectations about what they should do, how it will be done, and what standards of performance you expect from them.

To beat the numbers, you need to avoid “average” sales culture. That is where marketing messaging and a quick meeting about your annual quota are generally agreed-upon methods of orientation.

Instead, you need to have a plan for mentoring your new hires.

Give them clear instructions to follow, and check in with them when theyre finished.

For example, a salesperson may have an annual quota of $1 million.

In a good sales culture, the manager will want to know how their reps are doing from day one. They might check in once a week or every other week.

It’s like you’re telling them the goal and hoping they can execute it.

A good sales culture will break down the yearly quota into weekly and monthly quotas to help new hires track their progress.

For example:

If you make a million dollars in four quarters, that’s 250 thousand per quarter.

$250,000 divided by 12 weeks is $21,000 per week.

It’s important to narrow down the scope of what you are asking your new hires for. They’ll feel more confident if they only have a few things on their mind at once.

Providing salespeople with clear goals is the first step in leading them to success.

Seems simple right?

It should be. However, it’s not just about diversity and inclusion initiatives; there is a lot of work that goes into making the process seem effortless.

To help you diversify, there are two things that will work well

Teach the idea of day-to-day of selling

You can’t just set a quota for your new hires and expect them to succeed. You have to prepare them for the ups-and-downs of selling every day in your organization.

Employees need to be trained, otherwise they will have a hard time adjusting.

You need to make sure youre prepared for the daily trials of sales, which include people flaking on meetings and contacts leaving. Emails can also bounce.

Instead of setting the goal high and hoping your new hires know how to reach it, lay out a plan for them so they can succeed.

  • Reach the number
  • Measure it
  • Report it
  • Encourage the new people to keep trying.

Teach hustle

You cannot rely on other departments to do your work for you, and if they don’t come through with a strong account for you to close, it can be hard.

Salespeople who have been around for awhile know that it’s important to nurture your leads and go after the big fish yourself.

Hustle is a word that represents the superstars of sales. A large part of success in sales depends on how much work you produce.

Your new hires will need to learn how to hustle. Teach them and give them opportunities for growth.

Coaching

A lot of companies just tell new hires that they are on target for their first month. After that, the salesperson is expected to figure out how much commission he or she should be earning.

If you want your employees to be motivated to close sales, the responsibility is on management.

You need to have a book of accounts with some warm leads. You should also take notes on their abilities and devise a coaching plan for them.

Here are two things to do in the first 90 days of employment.

Set activity metrics

In the first 90 days, its important not to force your sales managers into a position of having to whip employees for poor performance at the end of every quarter.

To avoid this, you need to set up measurable metrics and keep track of them on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.

Leading indicators should be reported on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis to keep the company well-informed.

For every individual contributor, it is important to know what they need to do in order to meet the median and how best they can exceed that goal.

Coach curiosity

Curiosity is often overlooked during the hiring process, but it’s one of the most desirable personality traits for sales competency.

Your new hires need to be curious about their progress, abilities and shortcomings. Ask them probing questions.

You are there to help them grow. You’re not their boss, you’re a guide.

Unfortunately, there is no one right way to do this.

The best advice I can give is to find someone who has done well in the role you are hiring for. Then it’s up to your enablementsales manager skills, as they will have a lot of guidance responsibilities.

Sales reps should ask questions about:

  • What theyre lacking
  • The differences between the two and what makes them better than everyone else.

If you are telling someone to just regurgitate a script, they will not be able to ask questions or learn anything new. You have hired them as a parrot instead of coaching them for success.

Performance improves in increments, not landslides. You need to be supportive of their learning and failures during the coaching process.

Set small goals that are achievable but don’t seem so at first sight. These will lead to big wins in the future.

One of the keys to coaching a novice is not overwhelming them with information.

To Recap

Orient your new hire by making sure they know what is expected of them, setting goals for their growth and guiding them on how to get there.

Make sure they understand the day-to-day of your company, and provide them with metrics that will allow them to succeed.

Encourage them to be curious about their accounts and how they might solve problems creatively.

The process of hiring a new employee should be fast and efficient.


Need Help Automating Your Sales Prospecting Process?

LeadFuze gives you all the data you need to find ideal leads, including full contact information.

Go through a variety of filters to zero in on the leads you want to reach. This is crazy specific, but you could find all the people that match the following: 

  • A company in the Financial Services or Banking industry
  • Who have more than 10 employees
  • That spend money on Adwords
  • Who use Hubspot
  • Who currently have job openings for marketing help
  • With the role of HR Manager
  • That has only been in this role for less than 1 year
Just to give you an idea. 😀
Editors Note:

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Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
This post was generated for LeadFuze and attributed to Justin McGill, the Founder of LeadFuze.