Sales Headcount: How Much is Really Enough?


When a sales team appears consistently overwhelmed, management’s first reaction may be to hire new sales staff and spread the workload. Yet recruitment is time-consuming, demanding and expensive; and adding staff increases operating costs. There’s an effective alternative that may be tapped with minimal cost and effort, suggests Neha Singh Gohil, Director of Knowledge Management at Prialto, in a guest posting on SellingPower Blog.

Gohil points out that although sales professionals are explicitly tasked with selling, if their sales efforts are diverted by other tasks – like lead prospecting, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) data-entry, and other data crunching and reporting tasks – these tasks dilute their opportunities to effectively focus on selling. Rather than tapping salespeople as generalists, Gohil favors using them for the expert work that’s fundamental to effective selling: creating presentation materials; making and nurturing relationships; qualifying leads and target contacts; and closing deals.

Sales effectiveness be powered-up without hiring more sales staff by 1) using less-expensive administrative support for sales-support tasks; and 2) using an effective lead generation program that frees sales staff from prospecting and data-entry. Taking this strategic approach to addressing how much sales headcount is really needed will increase productivity and sales, keep operating costs in check, and raise staff morale. A nice trifecta. Click here to read the blog posting.