Accountability: The Missing Link Between Process and ROI


By Josh Vajda

Very often, account­abil­ity is the miss­ing link between a writ­ten process and lack of desired ROI. How easy is it for an Inter­net sales­per­son to check off tasks as com­pleted when they are not, or to say “I’ve tried call­ing that per­son three times and they haven’t called me back. What’s the point?”

A good process that isn’t fol­lowed is the same as hav­ing no process at all—both sales­peo­ple and man­agers must be held account­able to fol­low­ing that process.

Here are a few tips to help weave account­abil­ity into your processes:

• Does Your Team Own It? Account­abil­ity is about own­er­ship – do your sales­peo­ple own the process? Own­er­ship means more than just knowl­edge of the process, it’s belief in the process and its con­sis­tent exe­cu­tion. As a man­ager, if you want to hold peo­ple account­able you have to rein­force WHY they should be fol­low­ing the process and instill the belief that their per­sonal results will improve. Call out indi­vid­ual suc­cesses that rein­force that fol­low­ing the process yields per­sonal returns.

• Review the Inter­net Sales Process.  Does it mir­ror the show­room sales process? In the show­room process, there’s always room for inter­ac­tion with man­age­ment. Sales­peo­ple have check points through­out process; the test drive, desk log and the write-up. In many stores, man­agers walk the lot and show­room and inject them­selves in the process to ensure every­thing stays on track. Is man­age­ment involved through­out your Inter­net sales process, only at the end, or not at all? Cre­ate avail­abil­ity of man­age­ment to the Inter­net team and rein­force the need for man­ager involvement.

• Open­ness and Com­pe­ti­tion. Noth­ing breeds account­abil­ity like vis­i­bil­ity. Show the whole team where all of them rank in your key per­for­mance areas and include the steps of the sale (i.e. con­tact rate, appoint­ment rate, show rate), not just sales vol­ume. Reg­u­larly review team results in a group, call­ing out the best at exe­cu­tion, and sched­ule indi­vid­ual meet­ings for coach­ing and per­sonal accountability.

By Josh Vajda, Direc­tor of Inside Sales, AutoUSA and can be reached via the con­tact page.