Qualification is an essential sales skill if we want to achieve our targets. Too many salespeople cling to prospects that are never going to close, to fill their pipeline and avoid having to prospect for new business. Pipelines get cluttered with prospects whose close date rolls and rolls. A lot of time is wasted chasing business that is never going to happen or that was always going to your competitor.
From the salespersons’ perspective, failure to qualify early and accurately wastes valuable time.
From a management perspective, this is a sales management problem that is easily solved. Sales managers must refuse to accept prospects that have not met well-defined qualification criteria. More importantly, moving a suspect to a higher qualification category must be backed by evidence from the customer. Sales process emails and letters are just good practice anyway – they help ensure that the customer and the salesperson have a common understanding of the customers’ requirement as well as what has to happen next, whose responsibility it is and when it should be done by.