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Why Successful Salespeople Leave

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An analysis by DePaul University found that when recruiting, training, and lost sales costs are included, the average turnover cost per Account Executive (AE) is $97,690. Therefore, you risk losing close to $500,000 if you lose five AEs in a single year.

Add to that the finding in a Glassdoor survey that only 19% of AEs have no plans to quit their companies in the near future, but 68% of AEs intend to hunt for a job within the next 12 months.

Why do salespeople quit? What steps can your sales team take to prevent your top sellers from quitting?
There isn’t a Sales Unicorn for you.

AEs are under a lot of pressure to deliver. The numerous demands placed on them, the variety of tasks they must complete, and the many hats they must don—from closer to account manager to lead generation specialist—all add to the pressure.

It is understandable that AEs would depart given the emphasis placed on performance and routine non-sales chores. Concentrating on AE growth is one approach of overcoming these obstacles.

People with strong internal and external motivators are what you should seek out when hiring and recruiting top talent. In both Achiever and Competition, they will perform well. People with high standards and a competitive nature are always looking for new challenges. They desire to ascend the ladder.

Modify the sale’s structure — Build a Ladder

There isn’t a ladder to ascend, which is the issue most organizations face.

What if sales leaders could create a ladder while also relieving some of their AEs of some of the more routine duties?

A position at the bottom of the ladder, known as a Jr. AE, would allow someone to learn the ins and outs of the AE position while performing order entries, writing proposals, and working through produce goods.

  • The following rung focuses on developing leads for AEs. Then they connect with and pass the most qualified prospects along.
  • The genuine AE function is at the next rung; these employees manage discovery meetings, counsel clients on the best course of action, and close deals.
  • The last position is that of an account manager, who is in charge of expanding and renewing the company.

Start with a Growth Guide and work your way up from there if you are unable to alter your sales structure in order to establish a ladder. Spend some time getting to know your AE’s short- and long-term objectives. As they develop a plan to get there, ask them where they picture themselves in a year, five years, and ten years.

While you must be concerned with performance, you can also think beyond it when it comes to the individuals you employ. As a sales leader, this will be a wise investment that may end up saving you thousands, if not millions of dollars.