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How To Benefit From A Fractional Sales Leader

Do you have an open sales leader position? Are you a CEO who does not have enough hours in the day to manage sales? Are your sales stagnant or declining?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, you might need a fractional sales leader.

It would be best if you had someone who could join your company ready to jump in without the expensive price tag that comes with finding and hiring this individual. Still not convinced? There are five ways you can benefit from a fractional sales leader.

Outside Perspective

When it comes to creative problem-solving in a company setting, the solution often comes from taking a step back and analyzing the situation. Easy, right? Wrong. Someone who is so engrossed in the day-to-day aspects of their position has a difficult time stepping back and seeing an “outsider’s perspective” on an issue.

When an experienced fractional sales leader comes into your company, it can shine a light on problems that may have gone unseen. They can identify solutions that could very well be hidden in plain sight. They may not know everything about your company or industry, but they understand sales strategy, systems, processes and will combine their past experiences, leadership expertise, and current market trends to your company.

Strategy and Tactics

Often a sales leader within a company must look at developing sales and tactical execution strategies. They have to design, plan, and build a sales strategy, and they must strategically execute the plan, where adoption might be challenging. It can be very strenuous for sales leaders who have to focus on all those things.

A fractional sales leader often has a support team behind them and can evolve and implement the strategy quickly and efficiently. With all that is taking place, change is inevitable. They can share their experiences of what has worked with changing day to day behaviors in salespeople to activate the team on the right activities very quickly.

When you are trying to change, develop strategy and execute within an organization, there frequently isn’t enough time, or realistic expectations set as to what good looks like.  A full-time sales leader is often mired in one or the other. Many sales leaders have limited experience executing all of this, whereas a fractional sales leader has a wide variety of experiences as well as having a team behind them to help implement the strategy faster.  

ROI

An average sales leader’s compensation in salary, commissions, bonuses and benefits can be very high. Total compensation will rise drastically based on ability, experiences and industry knowledge; however, with a fractional sales leader, you save about 20% - 30% overall. With the ability to “rent instead of hire” there are extra benefits of saving on costs associated with recruiting, interviewing, relocating, and full-time health benefits. This makes a fractional sales leader an excellent choice for a small to mid-sized company that does not need or cannot afford to make a wrong hire as a sales leader.

In addition to being a part-time member of your staff, a fractional sales leader usually comes with a team to help support their work and a wide variety of system integrators. In essence, you often get three people for the price of one.

The number one job of Fractional Sales Leader is to help drive the company sales initiatives. Those may be top line growth, bottom line increases, raising average deal size, etc. They will focus on driving the right activities that will drive the business.

 A fractional sales leader will often offer other services such as hiring, onboarding, and acting as the full-time interim executive during the search for a new sales leader or Vice President of Sales.  

Clear End and Start Date

If you think a fractional sales leader might bring value to your organization, you get to determine the length of the contract. Having a defined start and end date helps to map out finances better without any surprises. As for companies who have never had a sales leader before, you “get to test drive” what a sales leader would look like in your organization without a significant time commitment.

For companies who’ve fallen on hard times and have to get back into “growth mode,” you know when you hire a fractional sales leader, you are hiring a package that includes; creation of a sales plan and development and execution of that plan. The fractional sales leader will then help you hire a new permanent sales leader, onboard that person, and assist in protecting your investment of longer-term growth.

Extraction of a Fractional Sales Leader

A lot of companies have a difficult time letting go of their fractional sales leader. It’s challenging to say goodbye to a relationship; however, if you’ve established the proper expectations and your fractional sales leader has set up your sales team for success, then the handoff to the new sales leader should be relatively seamless.

The fractional sales leader should always be building towards the future. In conjunction with having a sales leader and implementing their processes, the messaging to the team is we are going to hire a sales leader that will follow many of these same sales process and methodologies. The fractional sales leader is there to set you up for success. 

Most companies can benefit from having a fractional sales leader at some point in their evolution. The Fractional Sales Leader will save you money, give you a larger return and bring an outside perspective, as well as their own proven strategies and tactics. It will allow you to “rent” a sales leader while looking for a permanent one, and will always be building for your future. 

About Steve Hoeft

Steve is a Partner, VP Client Services at Pivotal Advisors. Leadership has been forefront in his career for over 20 years. He has also been a Vice President of Sales for a number of companies in Minnesota. Steve has been a guest speaker for many groups such as Sales Leaders Roundtable, Trust Vets, Marine Corps Events and more. If you want to find out more about Steve check out his profile here.
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