The 4-Step Goal-Setting Process Your Competitors Hope You Never Learn

On October 1, during Game 3 of the 1932 World Series at Wrigley Field in Chicago, with the score tied at 4-4, the great Babe Ruth came to bat. 

After taking two strikes and being heckled mercilessly by Chicago Cubs’ fans and “bench jockeys”, he held up his hand and pointed toward a flagpole deep in Center Field, some 440 yards away.

On the next pitch, Ruth let loose and belted the ball high into the center field stands not far from the flagpole he’d just pointed to. The Yankees went on to win the game, 7-5 and the next day finished off the demoralized Cubs 13-6 in a four-game sweep of the World Series.

Now, you may not always be able to call your shots quite like Ruth apparently did that day…

But, let me ask you — Does your company at least have some kind of systematic process for predicting and hitting your quarterly and annual sales goals?

Far too many homebuilders don’t.

But those who do often see a remarkable increase and greater predictability in their sales numbers.

So, how are these companies driving superior results?

Right Players, Right Positions

In his classic business book, Good to Great, author Jim Collins points out that great companies focus first on the who and only then on the what.

And just as in baseball or any other team sport with positions requiring a unique skill set, if you want a great team, you need the right players in the right positions.

Great managers constantly evaluate their players. And they don’t hesitate to let someone go if they’re not the right fit. 

Yes, removing somebody from their current role is not something most of us look forward to. But it’s not only wrong for the team to keep somebody on who can’t perform, it’s almost always better for the player to let them go so they can find a place where they’re a better fit. 

You find a new role for them somewhere else in your company, where they can thrive and add to your forward momentum. For instance, let’s say they’re not great in sales. Maybe they could be a total rockstar as a purchasing agent, construction supervisor or executive assistant.

At year’s end and at least once a quarter is a good time to evaluate your team — is it running on all cylinders? Who could you move, add or subtract?


If You Don’t Know Where You’re Going…

If you and your sales team aren’t holding weekly accountability meetings, I can pretty much predict what your company’s growth curve looks like. 

And it’s not a pretty picture.

To paraphrase the Cheshire Cat to Alice…

“If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there”

Not being 100% crystal clear on what your sales goals are and how you plan to get there leaves your results up to fate. And fate, like Murphy, isn’t always kind.

This applies to your team as a whole and it applies to each sales professional on your team. Sales is a very numbers-driven game. If you don’t know your numbers and have a plan for hitting them, how can you possibly expect to win?


A Goal Without A Date Is Just A Dream

A good practice is to set a 90-day goal, and then hold weekly or, better yet, daily accountability meetings with your team to keep everyone focused on getting there. The sooner you recognize you’re off target, the sooner you can course correct. 

By meeting regularly and sharing wins and challenges, you can break down a big goal into daily actions. You can track the needs of your players and be on the lookout to see if all the right steps and systems are in place. Not only that, by sharing results regularly, everyone feels a greater sense of accountability to the group. 

Being accountable means you can’t just say you’ll get something done or achieve a goal… You must actually do it.

Setting attainable goals and then achieving them — That’s what creates traction. Otherwise, everyone is just busy, without creating any forward motion.


Is There a Rhinoceros in The Room?

Have you ever noticed that problems don’t just float away?

All too often, there’s a tendency in teams to avoid mentioning some ugly little problem in hopes it’ll maybe just disappear. It’s like having a rhinoceros in your living room that nobody’s talking about. Ignoring it is not going to make it go away.

Problems tend to fester if left unattended.

If there’s an issue holding your company back, it’s not going to vanish until you solve it. Great teams practice IDS — Identify, Discuss and Solve.

Problems happen — they’re what we get paid to solve. Don’t just shove ‘em under a rug… Bring them up with team members and keep chipping away at them until you reach some kind of resolution.

At Sales Solve Everything, we review a list of issues every week — everything from travel conflicts to client challenges to systems not working. We identify our top 3 issues, and get to work tackling them.

Make problem-solving a key part of your company culture. Problems, issues, or as we like to refer to them, challenges can be gateways to serious momentum. When you finally address that rhino in the room, you start making progress. It’s then easier for everyone to start rowing in the same direction.

After all, a team is not a group of people who work together… A team is a group of people who trust one another. 

Do you have a set of systematic processes for getting the right players in the right seats, setting and achieving goals, keeping everyone accountable and solving problems when they come up?

If you’d like help with any of these issues, give us a call and we’ll help you come up with some new ways of thinking, and questions you can ask your team to really hit your goals out of the park.

The Babe would be proud. 🙂