If you’ve ever watched a professional soccer game, when the team scores, you’ve heard the commentator scream out, “GOAL!!!!!!"

At this point, everyone in the stadium and all of the TV viewers know that something significant has been accomplished. When you and your sales team set and meet goals, something significant has been accomplished as well. With so many things pushing against your business, goals help keep you moving in the right direction by creating a place to aim and a plan for getting there. It may be time to “shoot your shot,” but what does that mean, and even more importantly, what does it look like when it comes to moving your pest control business forward and achieving your goals?

Be S.M.A.R.T. About Your Goals

You’ve decided that your team needs to make a play, but you also realize that you don’t have time for games when it comes to your pest control business. Perhaps you’ve heard of S.M.A.R.T. Goals before. They are a strategy that you can implement that is more than just a trend. People use the process because it works. The acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.

When the goal is specific, your team knows where they’re going. As a result, they can better focus on their work and their aim. There’s a difference between saying you want to lose weight and saying you want to lose four percent of your body weight in the next four weeks. Dialing in on your goals allows for a higher level of accountability and perhaps even a push further.

Let’s say you create a goal for your team to increase sales by 10 percent between the months of April and August. You’ve given your team a specific target to aim toward. After all, what is the point of shooting your shot if you don’t even know where you’re trying to get to? When a soccer player kicks the ball, it is with the purpose of either passing it to a teammate or scoring a goal. Your team should be moving just as purposefully.

It is likewise just as important to know where you stand right now. Are your ideas out of your league, or do they make perfect sense and fit just right? By looking at where you are at the beginning of April, you and the team are able to also look back at previous data during that time period to determine if a 10 percent increase is realistic and achievable. If you hadn’t been this specific, there is the chance that while your sales may have increased, your team may not have pushed to reach that 10 percent mark. This goes along with creating a sense of urgency by making the goal time-based. Athletes know that they have a certain amount of time to make their moves if the team is to win. You can use this strategy for your sales team to tap into their competitive nature and get both your sales representatives and potential customers to take fast action.

Move with Strategy

As you work with your sales team to make progress, in addition to being S.M.A.R.T. about your goals, you are also going to have to move with strategy. You can equate this to knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge is what you know, while wisdom is knowing what to do with what you learn to achieve desired results. There are a few areas worth paying particular attention to so that you can have a higher chance of scoring when you do shoot your shot.

1. Know Your Product/Service

It’s going to be hard for your team to make sales if they don’t have proper knowledge of what they are offering. Train your team on how your services solve your customers' problems. Highlight what makes your service better than the competition.      

2. Know Your Team

To be an effective team, you, as a leader, have to know your players and how they fit into their positions, but it is just as vital for them to be knowledgeable about and comfortable with one another. When this occurs, they are able to lean on and support one another based on their weaknesses and strengths. It is also essential to know how to best motivate or incentivize your sales team. Not only do people like to see that they are working for something, but they also value being recognized and appreciated. Dangling the carrot in front of the horse keeps it focused and motivated the end goal. It’s no different for your sales team.

3. Know Your Audience 

The best salespeople know how to build relationships. As such, they have to make an effort to know and understand their audience on an individual basis while also taking into account what is happening in the pest control industry at large. Both are important because while there may be overall trends happening in the pest control industry, there can always be outliers and unique circumstances for your individual customers. Likewise, people want to know that they are important and seen as more than a sale. Have your reps ask questions that provide answers beyond a simple yes or no. Bring in examples of issues seen in their area and explain how you can solve their problem.

4. Know Where You Stand

Knowing your team members’ numbers and understanding their positioning can be a powerful tool. Outside of game time and practice, sports teams spend a fair amount of time looking at film and stats. Take a look at the following data points for your pest control sales team:

  • Connection Ratio: The number of initial interactions that turn into conversions. This helps with efficiency. The more calls/visits you convert, the less you’ll have to make.
  • Initial Meeting Conversion: Percentage of initial meetings that lead to an immediately scheduled follow-up. The higher the number, the fewer the prospects needed.
  • Length of Sales Cycle: The length of time it takes to close a deal. The longer prospects are in the funnel, the less likely they are to do business with your company.
  • Closing Ratio: The number of initial meetings that turn into actual customers
  • Losses to No Decision: The percentage of forecasted prospects that choose not to make a change
     

Peter Drucker, often referred to as the Father of Management, famously said, “What gets measured gets managed.” Sales goals have to be tracked, measured, and managed if your sales team wants to achieve success for your pest control business. With a motivated team, the proper goals in sight, and a pathway to get there, your pest control business is bound to win.