Gavin Percy, Managing Director of Winning Edges is a business development expert specialising in assessing and improving sales performance and sales processes to positively impact revenue.

Gavin is unique in having experience as a Senior Sales Manager (Queens Moat Houses; Stakis; Hilton; Thistle); Hotel General Manager (Stakis; Queens Moat Houses; Forte; Choice); UK Director of Sales (Best Western GB and Swallow Hotels); and senior Head Office (Principal Hayley) roles.

Gavin specialises in coaching, training and mentoring as well as conducting specific projects for clients specialising in the M&E market for hotels, venues and agents.

A mere 7% of employees today fully understand their company’s business strategies and what’s expected of them in order to help achieve company goals.

Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton, “The Strategy-Focused Organization,” Harvard Business School Press, 2001.

To effectively align the behaviours of your sales force with your corporate strategy, the strategy needs to be embodied in your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s). Inconsistency between plan and strategy can negatively affect sales force productivity and effectiveness and ultimately result in lost revenue, lower margins, and higher costs. The following tips reflect the best practices for ensuring strategic alignment.

1. Ensure clear understanding of strategy companywide

Ideally, the behaviours and efforts of everyone in the sales organisation will be directed towards achieving the company’s strategic goals. For this to occur, the sales force (whether direct or indirect) must clearly understand the company’s strategy and, perhaps more importantly, must understand what role they play in helping the company achieve its strategic objectives

2. Set KPI’s in line with the strategy

When setting team targets/objectives/KPI’s make sure that they are aligned to the company’s overall strategy.

3. Reward good performance

Setting the right KPI’s should be aligned with a motivational, competitive but self-funding incentive/bonus scheme. Self-funding meaning that the incentive costs are more than covered by the increase in profit.

4. Proactively monitor plans

To ensure that your plans are always aligned with strategy, continually review them—comparing actual results with relevant KPI’s and desired results, and voicing concern when something isn’t the way it should be.

5. Periodically evaluate plan effectiveness

At least quarterly evaluate plan effectiveness. This will both ensure that the plan is driving the desired behaviours and alert you to make changes to the plan as soon as there is any misalignment with the company’s strategy.

Studies show a dramatic increase in both worker and business performance when an organisation effectively sets and closely ties individual employee goals to the company’s overall strategy.

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