The bad news is that you have been given responsibility for the least productive territory in the company. The good news is that you have an opportunity to turn it around. It is all in how you approach this challenge in sales territory management.
Start with these three proven steps:
- Get to know your sales reps and their customers. Meet with each of your team members to get a sense of how they work and who their contacts are. Then go on sales visits with them. Not only will you learn how capable they are, but you will also be able to assess the viability of their opportunities.
- Dump the old numbers. The sales territory was a failure so you cannot rely on any of the previous forecasting numbers. Create new, more realistic forecasts based upon your best judgment and the input from your sales reps. You will quickly sense which reps are going to over-inflate their numbers and which will sandbag. Take that into account when you come up with your own predictions.
- Expect improving performance. If your salespeople are not performing, decide if they need development and support or should be let go. And then fill open positions as soon as possible.