What if today you were given notice that your sales quota will double in 2014. You are not allowed to hire new reps, nor can you rely on new products or new markets to hit the number. Would you have doubts about your ability to achieve the new objective in the year ahead? I’m betting your answer is YES. That’s because you know it’s absurd to think you can obtain different results in the future without changing something about the way you do business currently. That is after-all, the very definition of insanity.

It would be insane to think your team can sell twice as much next year as you do this year, with the same number of reps, same products, and same markets. Heck, it’s hard to imagine increasing sales by as little as 10% without implementing some sort of change. How on earth will you do it?

Here’s the good news. There is something you’ll be allowed to change and you’re given these next 10 months to make it happen. You can select and provision for sales tools that will make it possible for reps to sell more.

Lucky for you, this is an amazing time to be in the sales profession because of the technological innovation taking place. There are many more tools to put in your arsenal along side your CRM system. In fact, if you only have budget for CRM, you are sending your reps to a gun fight with a knife. CRM is NOT a productivity tool, nor is it a revenue generation tool. It is helpful for sure. Necessary? Yes. But there are many new tools that go beyond facilitating forecasting and activity logging. CRM alone will not help you increase revenue. That being said, newer CRM tools change the game and go a long way toward helping reps perform their jobs (and we name 3 in our new guide).

What you’ll need are tools specifically designed to improve sales performance. Sales performance is impacted by two things and both have to do with time-use.

The first way for reps to spend their time is by talking with a real-life prospect. The other is to spend it doing something else. Recent studies have shown that the average rep spends just 35% of their time with prospects. Whatever your percentage, you’ve no doubt recognized that every prospect interaction needs to count for something. As Nancy Bleeke writes in her new book, “Conversations That Sell” the purpose of every conversation is to get the prospect to either do or decide something. If you want to double revenue, every conversation and every activity must help your prospect with one or both.

Top Sales SoftwareOur new (free) 2013 Top Sales Tools guide is packed with the best tools to help your reps do just that. You’ll find tools for contests and motivation, for creatively communicating with prospects, for identifying and reaching decision makers and much more.

The truth of the matter is this. You don’t need anyone else to insist that you significantly increase revenue in 2014. You have the power in you to make that happen without hiring new reps, and without new products or markets. And you do in fact, have 10 months to prepare.

All you have to do is commit now. Commit to not letting another month go by without launching your investigation into the right tools for your sales organization. Why not start this very minute with our new multi-media guide. No registration required. No reason not to.

Author, Nancy Nardin is the foremost expert in sales productivity tools. As President of Smart Selling Tools, she consults with many of the top sales productivity software vendors as well as end-user organizations looking to select the right tools. Click to get Nancy’s What & When weekly digest with invitations to complimentary webinars and informative publications. Follow Nancy on Twitter @sellingtools or subscribe to her Tool Talk blog. Nancy can be reached at 916-596-3035. To schedule a free 30 minute consultation click here.

About the author

Nancy Nardin

Nancy Nardin is a recognized thought leader on sales technologies and building a sales stack. Smart Selling Tools reviews the latest sales and marketing software across multiple categories, including Inside Sales, Sales Intelligence, Sales Acceleration, Pipeline Management & Deal Flow, and Predictive Sales Analytics. It's been named a Top Sales Blog by HubSpot, and Nancy Nardin has been named alongside Forbes’ top 30 social sales influencers in the world. Follow Nancy on Twitter @sellingtools