Whenever I ask sales managers to describe their approach to coaching their highest producers, they almost uniformly have the same answer: hands-off! They tell me: “I may get involved when a big deal is nearing to close, but otherwise if a peak producer is doing well, why would I want to mess with a good […]
Recently during a workshop with a group of sales managers the question came up, “I just got promoted from sales rep to manager of the sales team. How do I make the move from being their buddy to being their boss?” Here are five suggestions:
1. Have your new boss make the promotion announcement in person, […]
If your sales team’s performance is not all that you think it should be, maybe you need to make some changes. Here are three mindsets for developing your action plan to transform your team’s performance.
You cannot tolerate mediocrity.
Every sales manager has one thing in common: a minimum producer. And the questions you have to ask […]
Recently I was working with a team of sales managers and the question came up: “How do I handle a salesperson who sells a lot, but is uncoachable?”
It’s a common issue and one that sales managers must address. Success is contagious; unfortunately so is a lousy attitude.
Before talking with the team of sales managers about […]
The single most important issue in any sales organization is managing the funnel to achieve an accurate sales forecast. Let’s look at two ways this core issue is typically handled.
Company A’s funnel process uses one of the most common approaches to forecasting, orienting its sales funnel to the steps of its sales process: qualifying, opportunity identified, quotation provided, demonstration delivered, and negotiation/close. You know the drill. […]
One of the biggest issues that sales managers struggle with is sales rep motivation. Perhaps that’s why sales managers often ask me, “what can I say or do to get my salespeople more focused on achieving their sales goals?”
Personal motivators differ from one salesperson to another. There is typically a primary motivator and a secondary one for each sales rep on your team. Once you understand a person’s motivators you’ll want to incorporate them into your 1 on 1 conversations and other interactions.
As a start, before your meeting with your salesperson ask him/her to identify their “money goal” for the next 12 months, and what they need to sell in order to hit their money goal. Then during the conversation: […]
While seasoned salespeople are highly valued for their expertise, they can sometimes pose a challenge when it comes to change. Name any kind of change—in company structure, compensation, sales territories, product lines, ownership, etc.—and it’s likely that many seasoned salespeople hate it. It’s understandable to some degree. Successful salespeople have fine-tuned their techniques and are extremely reluctant to change anything about how they work.
It’s no wonder, then, that I often hear sales managers complain: “My seasoned salespeople haven’t yet bought in to using our company’s CRM system. What can I do about it?” […]
As the saying goes, what gets measured gets done. How are you measuring your sales managers? One metric is, of course, “% of plan.” But you already know that.
Every sales manager wants to be provided with a clearly defined target. Give them a clear target and they will hit it. The trouble with providing them with only one metric focused on end results, such as “% of Plan,” is that sales managers can become very short-term focused. They will put their effort into chasing big deals instead of coaching. So your sales teams aren’t being built to last. […]
Financial offerings warn that past performance is no guarantee of future success. Shouldn’t sales managers carry the same warning?
Too many companies tend to shoot themselves in the foot by investing the bulk of their training resources on their sales reps and ignoring training for those responsible for managing their reps’ performances. Star results as a rep don’t automatically translate into managerial success.
The fact is, most sales managers have never received formal sales management training. Untrained sales managers are a big reason rep training itself may fail to bear fruit, or more specifically, to impact sales results. That hurts your bottom line. […]