How Long Does it Take to Fix a Sales Team?

Frustrated business leaders cannot figure out how to find predictable sales revenue

Answering the question of how long it takes to fix a sales team isn’t straightforward. Turning a sales organization around depends on many factors, like the number and severity of fundamental issues needing attention.

It’s impossible to rewire sales performance overnight. Even if you find and fix issues in your sales process, my experience has shown me that there are likely other dependent factors also contributing to revenue growth problems.

Every organization is built and operates a little differently. It takes an experienced eye to perform the proper discovery and analysis to isolate root cause problems that hinder top performance.

Once corrected, it takes time to drive sales team adoption and build a healthy sales pipeline.

So, while you likely won’t see immediate revenue results the first quarter or two after engaging a Fractional Sales Leader like me, you will see tangible results in every step of the process, even within the first few weeks.

My key to success in fixing sales teams is the methodical process I follow to achieve increased revenue growth in a sustainable, scalable manner.

Key Takeaways

  • Seek to identify high-impact actions during the Discovery and Assessment Phase of your transformation to bring immediate improvement opportunities to the forefront.
  • Build a sense of accomplishment and momentum by breaking down business gaps into small actionable steps during the Design & Build Phase.
  • Leverage Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to drive adoption during the Operationalize Phase by applying proactive sales coaching.
  • Even with a well-tuned sales system in place, “the right” sales leader is essential to drive consistency, repeatability, and confidence in the company’s ability to achieve growth objectives.
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Phase 1: Discovery & Assessment

During the initial stage of our partnership, I conduct a deep dive analysis of your company to identify high-impact sales gaps that are holding your organization back.

I meet with various organization members to understand all the moving parts that impact revenue generation.

A group of businesspeople begin to feel confident after finally having reliable data

Once I understand the people, process, and systems gaps that are hindering revenue production, I work to create actionable recommendations for how to correct them.

I do this by tying my proposed action plan to root cause issues so you have clarity on what we are setting out to accomplish together through a corrective action roadmap.

I have found that after I present the corrective plan, business leaders experience new hope and excitement. They finally see the root issues causing their late-night headaches. Sometimes they have been dealing with the symptoms of these sales problems for decades.

The length of this phase varies depending on the scope of what is being assessed. If the top executive or acting sales leader can provide visibility through established metrics data for various sales areas needing improvement, then discovery could be as short as 1-2 weeks.

However, typically 1-2 months is more realistic as we partner to define current state with clarity as the baseline to improve upon.

Phase 2: Design & Build

This is the building phase where I work with clients to design processes, tools, and systems that fit their individual business needs. From there, I leverage my best practices experience to construct and implement the agreed-upon sales infrastructure.

Things begin to fall in place at this point because we are taking action on a series of small projects that create significant impact.

By breaking down the various business gaps into actionable steps, your team begins to feel a sense of accomplishment.

A few examples of things we might address are:

A strategic shift in strategy and outside perspective were key to success

The business leaders I partner with usually get excited during this phase because they can envision how the new sales methodology will enable them to taking control of their sales department by being better equipped to hold their sellers accountable.

This is the point where the owner or top executive sees with clarity how sustainable sales growth can be achieved through a more formalized sales approach.

The length of this phase is mainly dependent on the scope of what’s being developed. While this phase may take several weeks or even a few months, there is an agreed-upon project plan with achievement milestones built-in.

It is ideal for these high-impact structural changes to be fully implemented before we begin the next phase, to ensure all gaps are addressed and it’s reasonable to expect predictable sales execution.

Phase 3: Operationalize with Adoption

This stage is when all the hard work pays off. By building accountability into newly customized processes, we have fundamentally changed how your sales organization operates.

Sales leader teaches team how to drive intentional revenue growth

The key here is gaining your sales team’s buy-in through appropriate training and involvement during the discovery and design phases.

The excitement that begins building during the previous phase turns into a celebration as salespeople start breaking into more new accounts, closing opportunities more quickly, and embracing a new level of personal accountability.

There are no more questions about what sellers are doing. The sales leader is no longer scrambling to get a pulse on sales activity.

Instead of being weighed down with chasing deals that appear to be falling apart, the sales leader becomes a coach.

They are equipped to proactively isolate and address sales process breakdown areas visible through performance dashboards – another fundamental that gets put into place during the Design & Build Phase.

The entire sales organization is clear on what their role is in the sales process and what needs to be done to meet their established key performance indicators (KPIs) that guide overall success.

At this stage of evolution, owners and top executives often remark that their processes feel much more stable and repeatable which brings them new confidence in the company’s ability to achieve long-term growth that requires sales staff scaling.

This final phase of operationalizing and refining sales processes, systems and tools is ongoing and should never stop, so it’s hard to put a timeline on its completion.

Still, I am confident to say that within the first quarter of deploying the new completed sales infrastructure, you will see notable examples of impact like the examples I outlined in the grid above.

A sales team excitedly discusses their success during a weekly meeting

With “the right” Sales Leader at the helm, your new sales system should be fully embraced and functioning smoothly within six months.

After 12 months, the new approach will have become natural and sustainable. Your pipeline will be healthy and more predictable.

Issues can be identified and corrected quickly, without letting the problems balloon up and throw your entire revenue plan off.

Sales Leadership Transition To Drive Long-Term Success

As a Fractional Sales Leader, my role is to help you zero in on the things holding your business back, work with you to correct them, and take the lead on getting the new sales infrastructure functioning.

We achieve ultimate success when timing is right for me to hand off the baton to a sales manager who will operate the newly structured sales organization for the long-term.

Sometimes there is a team member on-staff that is groomed to take over through the mentorship they receive during the multi-phase process we worked through together.

Other times, my final deliverable is to help source, screen, and secure an established sales leader from the outside.

Whichever route is right for your unique setting, our engagement is complete when “the right” sales leader is properly onboarded and ready to successfully operate and scale the sales organization to achieve long-term growth objectives.

If you’d like to discuss the transformation you’re looking for in your business, contact me at: (512) 808-6691 or, or book a call through my Scheduling Tool.

I am part of a national group of Senior Sales Leaders who collaborate to share insights like the examples shown in this article. We formed because of our shared passion for helping business leaders exponentially grow their revenue.

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