Sales pipeline review and QBR dos and don'ts

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How many of you have attended a Quarterly Business Review or QBR?

You will have listened to each sales rep presenting their forecast. The sales opportunities that will close to achieve their following quarter quota targets.

Some sales leaders invite Pre-Sales, Marketing, Post Sales to their QBRs. Time is money. If you are one of those attending a QBR, how much time are you spending adding value to the QBR compared to listening, or waiting until it is over?

QBRs are expensive to run and also important to the growth of a business. There should be etiquette and discipline running QBRs. That etiquette must focus on adding and delivering value throughout the QBR session.

How do you create the space to improve the value and performance of your QBR investments? We need to look at how effective your sales pipeline review meetings are. Not being effective in managing pipeline review meetings places pressure on QBRs. They often review what sales pipeline reviews should cover every couple of weeks.

So, a QBR becomes a glorified sales pipeline review. A well-managed sales pipeline review ensures each sales rep has their one-on-one with the sales leader. Poor sales pipeline reviews place pressure on QBRs risking they become a poor investment of both company resources, cash and everyone’s time.

Six steps to help to improve your sales pipeline reviews and QBRs.

  1. Invest in a lightweight and dynamic sales prospecting tool. These tools guide sales teams developing their sales pipelines while on the job in the field. Tools like the Conversational Solution Sales Scorecard allow a sales rep to track key conversation risk indicators. These insights allow them to forecast their sales leads to greater accuracy.
  2. Use your sales prospecting tools alongside your Customer Relationship Management or CRM system. They will improve the effectiveness of your sales pipeline reviews.
  3. No not use sales pipeline reviews to scrub CRM data, or to adjust forecasted revenues to meet quota targets, business and investor expectations.
  4. Focus sales pipeline reviews to help sales reps developing a game plan to move deals forward in the sales pipeline.
  5. Focus QBRs on activities to support your sales team move sales leads forward. QBRs are an important investment in strengthening sales teams’ skills. They should sharpen skills to achieve their next quarter quota targets. QBRs are also ideal forums to launch new initiatives. Also, a time when other functions help your teams achieve their quota forecasts.
  6. Send out your QBR Agenda. It must include the run order, allotted time and who is delivering each session for each session. Include the following three steps, so everyone is clear about what is the Intended Result / Outcome — The Purpose — The Action Plan.
Step 1 Step 2 Step 3

Do this, and you will remove the risk your QBRs becoming glorified sales pipeline reviews. Focus the QBR on how you can support your sales reps overachieve their next quarter’s sales quota targets. You improve your QBR performance by improving your sales pipeline reviews.

Download our Sales Pipeline Guides

Improve your sales pipeline reviews with our Sales Pipeline Guide for Sales Teams & Business Owners. Within this guide, you can also download Using Sales Prospecting Tools to Improve Sales Pipeline Reviews.

Download the sales pipeline guide


About the Author

Treve Wearne is the founder of Nazca Services Limited. Treve supports businesses and sales teams positioning themselves and increasing sales revenues. Improving sales forecasts, talent development and retention in the most challenging business environments.