The Keys

This article was originally published at

The Keys
Critical questions that need to be answered for organizational sales success.
8/14/2017 | Roger Burnett, The Burn
Building sales teams from scratch has revealed some things. While it’s not impossible, leaving critical elements of your sales structure incomplete or resorting to manual processes endangers the possibility of success with the peril of time.
Whether you are building a new staff or managing an ongoing one that already is in place, answering the “Key” questions below will help to put you on the path to success.


There are keys to the engine.

• Who are you selling to? (Everyone is not an acceptable answer.)

• Where do these buyers congregate?

• What have you identified as the recurring problems they have? (If you haven’t paid attention, you’re failing.)

• How has something you’ve sold solved one of those problems?

• How have you documented those instances?

 There are keys to the infrastructure.

  • How are you documenting your interactions with people? (If it’s not CRM-based, you’re failing.)

• What tool(s) are you using to automate your passive prospecting?

• Who takes care of a prospect once they attempt to convert? How fast does it happen?

• Where (how, how frequent) is your information being analyzed and shared with your supply chain?

 There are keys to the culture.

• What role does staff play in the success of the business?

• How are successes celebrated? How are failures?

• Is curiosity rewarded or punished?

• Where do new ideas most frequently come from?

While no one answer to any one question will ensure success, not considering these questions or integrating your answers into a plan while building (or rebuilding) your team will assuredly slow the pace of progress, sometimes sacrificing the entire venture.

Whether a new entity or a going concern, these keys and your answers as guideposts might help you and your team on the journey toward success.

Enjoying my writing? If you’re a music-lover, I’m also curating a specific Spotify playlist titled The Burn which serves as the musical accompaniment to the articles found here. Subscribe to the playlist and let’s hear from you if you have suggestions for additional tracks that might support what you read!

Roger has spent 20+ years making complex concepts more understandable for both buyers and sellers alike, and has devoted the majority of his recent career to writing and executing sales and marketing plans for early and mid-stage businesses. He is a student of organizational behavior and the disciplines successful selling organizations use to achieve the greatest reach, even in instances of scarce resources. He loves the outdoors and seeks memorable experiences whenever possible. Contact Roger at or 810-986-5369.

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