To build a valuable business that will one day be sellable, sales need to continue after you’re gone.
In most businesses, this responsibility lies with the business owner and they often replace themselves with a ‘superstar’ salesperson, but there are pitfalls.
If you replace yourself with one salesperson, you’re merely swapping a dependency on you for a dependence on a rep and as a result your business is no more sellable.
When Business Partnership analysed the users of the Value Builder Score – a simple self-assessment test business owners use to understand how to drive up the value of their company – we learned that businesses which could easily replace their leading salesperson are over twice as likely to get an offer to buy their business, compared to those reliant on a single salesperson.
Writ large, you need a sales team – and the faster the better. Here are Business Partnership’s top three tips for building a sales team on a budget:
Charge up front
Good sales reps can be expensive to recruit and train. Before they are fully operational, consider changing your terms to charge some or your entire invoice up front. Or, if you already stagger your billing, ask for a larger payment up front. You might also consider introducing a subscription or service contract model, as most people understand that subscriptions are paid up front.
Divide territory into manageable chunks
Sales territory is an asset of your business and, like any reward, it is easy to give and harder to take back. Consider carving up your market into territories that provide enough opportunity for each rep to make money.
Hire a second rep ASAP
Salespeople thrive on competition. If you can demonstrate to a buyer that your company has sales driven by a team you will have a much more sellable business.
Switzerland Structure (structural weaknesses) is one of eight key drivers of your Value Builder Score.
The Value Builder Score is a survey of over 20,000 businesses measuring the finances, opportunities and risks associated with their business, and the offers they have received. Business Partnership uses the Value Builder System to help business owners increase the value of their business by up to 67 per cent.