Blog

Welcome to “Top Line”

Posted by David Wallace on September 11, 2009

“Top Line” is directed to sales and marketing executives, CEOs, other senior management and entrepreneurs who are interested in managing and improving their sales and marketing functions.  Each week, I will share some of the experience I’ve developed over a nearly thirty-year career in sales and marketing management. Over the coming weeks, I will address […]

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Have You Set Realistic Goals?

Posted by David Wallace on June 11, 2019

Effective businesses set goals and manage to them. When setting corporate sales goals, a company should first look at the market. What drives growth in each of the industries in which you sell your products? How much share does your firm have in each market? What are the competitive environments in your markets? Can you […]

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It All Starts with Strategy. What’s Your Strategy?

Posted by David Wallace on May 28, 2019

Sales success starts with strategy. You need a clear sales strategy and you need to clearly communicate that strategy to your sales team. If you don’t have a clear strategy or your sales team doesn’t understand your strategy, you’re not likely to achieve your goals. Furthermore, an unclear or misunderstood strategy is a prescription for […]

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Reviewing Plans, Activities and Results

Posted by David Wallace on April 26, 2019

Over the course of the year or sales cycle, effective managers review each sales representative’s sales plan on a regular basis. Reviews cover more than milestones and key performance indicators, although those are important to include. Reviews also examine the assumptions that underlie the plan. They look at market conditions – have they changed? – […]

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Are Your Sales Reps Ready for the New Year?

Posted by David Wallace on January 25, 2019

It’s January. Your competitors’ sales reps are off and running. Are yours?  The best way for your sales team to meet its revenue goals – and yours – is to develop and work through a territory plan. Don’t simply give your reps sales quotas and tell them to go figure. Have the reps develop a detailed […]

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Can I Recover an Outstanding Draw When My Employee Quits?

Posted by David Wallace on August 24, 2018

I’ve recently received a number of questions about recovering outstanding draws when an employee leaves a company. I’ve heard from both sides of the issue, employer and employee. This week, I received the following note: I am an employer with an employee owing a large amount on his recoverable draw. I now find he is being […]

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The Global Sales Management Balancing Act: Corporate Control vs. Local Autonomy

Posted by David Wallace on April 21, 2017

How does a company based in Palo Alto manage a sales team in Mumbai? It’s not easy. They are 8,400 miles and 13 time zones apart. And the business customs are very different in California and India. Needless to say, it’s a balancing act. Palo Alto wants control. The Mumbai team wants flexibility and autonomy. […]

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What Peyton Manning Can Teach Your Sales Team

Posted by David Wallace on April 21, 2017

Peyton Manning announced his retirement from football last week. Whether you are a fan of the Denver Broncos, Indianapolis Colts or any of the other 30 NFL teams, you’ve got to admit that Manning is one of the all-time greats to play quarterback in the league. Manning’s career is remarkable not only because of the […]

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A Question about Draw and Commissions

Posted by David Wallace on June 14, 2016

Today, I got the following question from a sales rep about the repayment of their draw. I am paid a $2,000/month draw and required to sell $22,500 in services each month.  I am paid 15% commission on all sales.  This has been the case since I started 5 years ago.  I consistently meet and exceed […]

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Some Observations on Sales Compensation Plans

Posted by David Wallace on November 16, 2010

I apologize for not having posted to this blog for a while.  In March, I agreed to lead the turn around of a business in the coin handling (high-speed sorting, counting, dispensing) industry.  Much of my time has been devoted to that endeavor. Last weekend though, Norm Eagle — Director of Sales for Meta Health Technology, sent […]

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Inside Sales and Outside Sales – Working Together

Posted by David Wallace on March 18, 2010

When you employ both an inside sales team and an outside sales team, how do you divide your sales responsibilities? Without a clear definition of responsibilities, inside and outside sales reps can battle with each other instead of with the competition.  If they battle over territories, customers and job roles, your customer gets caught in […]

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