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How To 

Optimize 1:1s 

for Success

A step-by-step template to 

ensure your 1:1s are part of 

your sales strategy

Courtesy of TopOPPS


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Overview

I believe millions of dollars in sales is lost due to poor execution in sales 1:1s.  By 
Sales 1:1s,  I am talking about when a sales manager meets with a sales 
representative on her/his team to develop them into an A-player and make sure 
they are hitting their number.  Adopting this methodology should improve sales 
growth and help in meeting the number on a regular basis.

The foundation of this methodology comes from my previous two companies that 
are market leaders in their categories – Gainsight, #48 in the Inc 5000 and Host 
Analytics, the leading finance performance management solution in the cloud.  

The following is a guideline and template that will help you become much more 
effective in your sales 1:1 meetings maximizing the development of your sales 
team.  

By Jim Eberlin, CEO & Founder of TopOPPS


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PART ONE

What’s Wrong 

With 

1:1

s

1

These three approaches will kill any 

opportunity of increasing the 

performance of your sales reps - 

avoid them. 


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What’s wrong with 1:1s

Just Another Forecast Call

Don’t make your 1:1 the forecast call – save that for, well…..the forecast call.  We 
tend to use that 1:1 time with the sales reps to review the shiney deals – but we 
need to separate the Forecast Call from the Sales 1:1.  The 1:1 time is for the sales 
rep.  You tend to their priorities first – this is their sales development time.  If you 
have a problem with juggling time to develop sales reps and get a good handle 
on the forecast and help the rep with deals, then let me know by sending me an 
email at 

jim@topopps.com

 and we’ll send you another template on Forecast 

Calls and Pipeline Reviews to help you in saving time and be more effective.

Just Another Forecast Call


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What’s wrong with 1:1s

De-motivators

In sales 1:1s avoid the the de-motivation comments that do not provide any 
guidance or next steps.  Just focus on metrics, facts and make sure the sales 
team is seeing them at the same time as you.   Jointly discuss the problem 
positively and put together a gameplan and next steps.  Everyone has to be 
accountable but applying negative pressure will not help.  Examples of these 
negative de-motivators:

“I really need you to hit your number this quarter” 

Gee thanks boss, I was planning to take it easy this quarter:)  How about we 
make sure we’re aligned on a good gameplan and make sure we execute on 
it.  

“You don’t have enough emails/calls/pipeline”  

Yeah, Vice President of Obvious, I’m looking right at my metrics and yes, 
that’s what they tell me:)   But I could use your help on some things to fix 
that.

Demotivators


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What’s wrong with 1:1s

The Disjointed 1:1 meeting

Starting a sales 1:1 from scratch, where you ask what happened last week and 
what’s coming up this week without knowing where you left off from the 
previous week, will get you nowhere.  Having a record of the previous week and a 
heads up on the discussion will make the meeting much more efficient and 
effective.  The meeting not only has to tend to the sales reps needs, but it has to 
continue progression toward the rep’s personal sales goal.

The Disjointed 1:1 Meeting

These three approaches 

will kill any opportunity 

of increasing the 

performance of your 

sales reps – avoid them. 


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PART TWO

Systematized Sales

1:1 Meetings

2

Weekly 

1:1

Monthly
Reviews

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

Monthly
Reviews

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

Weekly 

1:1

QBR


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Systematize Your Coaching

Sales Quarterly Business Review (QBR)

This is the sales meeting where sales reps will present to sales management the 
review of their personal previous quarter, then they’ll present their game plan to 
hit their forecasted number for the current quarter.  This meeting is done within 
the first week or two of the quarter.

1.

Sales rep reviews the quarter just ended

2.

Sales rep presents their forecasted number and the game-plan to meet 
their number

a.

Download the 

QBR Template

 

Quarterly Business Reviews


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Systematize Your Coaching

Weekly Sales 1:1

Weekly sales meetings should utilize a google drive to record what happened at 
the most recent meeting.  I’d keep the notes as simple as possible.  Make sure 
you address the sales reps priorities first and keep them guided in the right 
direction.  Then make sure your priorities are linked to the gameplan for proper 
execution.  

Here are the main sections of your google document or spreadsheet:  

1.

What the rep wants to talk about

a.

Examples could be that they need resources or help on a situation 
with a prospect

2.

What you want to talk about 

a.

You should be reviewing demos and meetings by the sales rep and 
coaching

b.

You want to make sure the sales rep is staying on course with what 
was committed in the QBR

3.

Objective from previous week

a.

Record action plans that came out of the meeting and next steps

4.

Date last updated 

Weekly Sales 1:1s


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Systematize Your Coaching

Monthly Sales 1:1s 

Now that you have had time to move the needle, you can look at metrics to 
measure results to make sure the game plan is working and that you’re on track 
to meet your number.  

1.

Forecast and Actual Bookings

2.

Current Quarter Pipeline

3.

Sales that will occur this quarter that are not in pipeline yet*

a.

Add current pipeline that should win to the wins that “will be 
produced” that are not in the pipeline yet*

4.

Opportunities scheduled to win in the quarter 

5.

% that this rep wins at each stage based of the sales process*

a.

Reason: To see where deals get stuck – to coach them to be better in 
that stage.  Review the exit criteria you use to move to the next stage 
and possibly insert a milestone that helps move deals forward.

b.

Download 

Leading and Lagging Metrics

Monthly Sales 1:1s


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PART THREE

Identify Sales 

Personalities

3

It’s important for your coaching 

direction to understand the 

personality and tendencies of 

each sales rep.


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Sales Personality:

Sandbagger

Sand-baggers tend to open up opportunities at the last minute and close them - 
as a deal is closing.  For example, if your normal sell cycle is 90 days, their deals 
might show 10 or 20 days – when in fact they were working them quite a few days 
before that.  Also, their win rates may be at or near 100%.  Also, their commit win 
rates will be the same as their overall win rates.  Don’t chastise the sales rep for 
doing this – get to know why.  They may have a good reason – maybe they don’t 
want you knowing about the deal for some reason until it’s ready to close.  So, 
it’s important to work together as a team to understand this tendency and get 
both of you aligned to support the rep and the company.  

Sandbagger Metrics:

Avg Time to Won:  This is the average amount of days to win a deal

Win Rate (Comprehensive):  Of all the opportunities that were won or lost - 
what % was won.  This shows the reps performance overall.  

Win Rate (Schedule to Win):  Of all the opportunities scheduled to win in the 
period – what % was won.  It is # of wins divided by (# of wins + pushes).  This 
shows the reps ability to predict when they will win.  

Win Rate (Commits):  Of all the opportunities that were committed by the sales 
rep – how many were won in that period.  This shows the reps ability to 
understand their ideal prospects and an additional indicator of their ability to 
predict when they will win.

Sandbagger


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Happy Ears

Reps with Happy Ears tend to hang onto deals longer and their win rates are 
lower than the other reps.  They’ll also have more “no-decisions” and what we 
call “multi-pushes”.  A single push is ok, because a rep tried to get a deal done in 
the current sales period but it slipped (also called “leaked” or “pushed”) into the 
following sales period – that happens.  But a multi-push means the deal pushed 
(or slipped) twice – that deal is highly unlikely to close.  Also, a Happy Ears rep 
will have a low commit win rate – which means they commit more often but 
these deals don’t close.  They need guidance on what roles they should be 
dealing with, how to get a customer to the appropriate next steps, decisions and 
breakups.

Happy Ears Metrics:

Avg Time to Lost:  This is the average amount of days that it takes for a rep to 
move an opportunity to closed lost.  

# of Multi-Pushes:  A single push is when an opportunity was originally 
scheduled for the current quarter but “pushes” into the falling quarter.  A 
multi-push is when an opportunity pushes into two or more sales periods.  Sales 
periods are usually a quarter or a month.  

Win Rate (Commits):  Of all the opportunities that were committed by the sales 
rep – how many were won in that period.  This shows the reps ability to 
understand their ideal prospects.  

Sales Personality:

Happy Ears


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Scattered 

The Scattered rep is not focused and chases most every lead that they get.  They 
need help on understanding the ideal customer profile, roles that they should be 
dealing with and qualifying questions for the right kind of deals.  They tend to 
discount a lot because it is hard to sell value to everyone.  Scattered reps tend to 
have low win rates to ideal customer profiles – but it’s possible for them to have a 
decent win rate overall – but they have lower value deals.

Scattered Metrics:

Win Rate (ICP):  Win rate of Ideal Customer Profile.  Ideal customer profile could 
include industry, company size, # of employees or users, revenue size, contact 
roles and any other deal attribute of your highest value wins.

ASP:  Average Selling Price is something to watch for scattered reps because they 
tend to discount. 

Sales Personality:

Scattered


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PART FOUR

Reduce the time and 

effort to do these 

meetings 

4


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There’s good news… 

You can see all this information and these metrics for your 1:1 meetings and not 
even request any help – it will be there automatically.  Contact us and view our 
application that automates this for you.  TopOPPS plugs right into your CRM, 
then automatically calculates and displays this information for each sales rep 
and summarizes it for your team. 

Contact us 

to learn more.

Predictive Analytics for Sales

TopOPPS can automate this for you.