The Top 3 Reasons Behind High Sales Attrition

A man walking out an open door to illustrate High Sales Attrition

High Sales Attrition Can Be a Major Problem
High sales attrition hurts.  Losing any good employee is tough on the overall business and on the morale of those left behind…but when you lose a top solution seller, the consequences can be dramatic.  Most studies peg average sales attrition between twenty-five and thirty percent split fairly evenly between voluntary and involuntary attrition.

The Costs of High Sales Attrition
High sales attrition costs are felt in the loss of customers, loss of revenue, loss of customer relationships and loss of desired customer results…not to mention the productivity delay in getting another salesperson up to speed.

Most studies suggest the cost per departed solution sales rep to be between $500,000 to $1,000,000 depending upon their role, tenure and industry.   And those shockingly high figures do not include the time and money you need to spend to recruit, interview and train their replacement.

The Top Three Reasons Behind High Sales Attrition
Here, according to our clients, are the top three reasons behind high sales attrition that cause high performing salespeople walk out the door:

1.  Lack of Conviction and Purpose
The best value selling sales reps believe their solutions truly benefit their customers and their customers’ customers. They are enthusiastic about the value the customer will receive and derive a high sense of purpose from what they do.

For high performing sales reps, it is about more than achieving quota. It is about making a positive impact on their buyers both personally and professionally.

2.  Lack of Autonomy
Few employees like being micromanaged…but most sales reps particularly resent being over-controlled. High performing sales reps like to be able to manage their own time and activities while feeling empowered to make decisions that are in their customers’ best interests.

3.  Lack of Reward and Recognition
Top solution sellers, just like other “A” caliber employees, want to be rewarded and recognized for their performance. As independent as many sales reps are, they also want their sales managers to understand and appreciate their contribution.

It is difficult for sales reps to stay motivated and engaged when a deal falls through or a tanking economy undermines their success. But a sales manager who cares and listens can help. An empathetic sales manager opens the door to team members, listens to concerns, and is able to deal with issues before they escalate.

The Bottom Line
Sales cultures are typically different from every other function in an organization.  Attracting, developing, engaging and retaining high performing sales reps can make or break an organization seeking high growth.  To succeed, focus on clarity, empowerment and recognition.

To learn more about avoiding high sales attrition and creating a high performance sales culture, download The Research-Backed Keys to Creating a High Performing Sales Team

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