TopLine Leadership Blog

TopLine Leadership Blog 2017-09-18T13:43:51+00:00

Eliminate the Bias in Sales Rep Evaluations

A universal problem I see in sales managers is an unconscious bias they bring to sale rep evaluation. Yes, they all look at the numbers, the monthly or quarterly results. But beyond the numbers, their judgment of how well a rep is doing is based in part on how much effort they’ve put into a rep. The more effort they’ve invested in a rep, the higher that rep’s evaluations. I [...]

November 14th, 2017|

Teaching the 4 Basic Skills of Value Selling

This blog is part of TopLine Leadership’s new series called Sales Coaching 101. On the first Tuesday of every month, we’ll cover a fundamental skill that helps sales managers interact more effectively with their sales reps. __________________________________ Learning how to sell value is critical in today’s market. To be effective at this task, salespeople need to be able to connect with customers at a deep level. They have to approach [...]

November 7th, 2017|

4 Things The Best Sales Managers Always Avoid

In my workshops with sales managers—former reps promoted into leadership positions—I always ask them to think back over their career and identify their “worst boss ever.” Here are the four most common types of managers that fall into that category and examples of their behaviors. The Passive-Aggressive Manager — The most frequent “worst boss” that I hear about is managers who are dominated by anger but unable to express it [...]

October 31st, 2017|

The #1 Obstacle Sales Managers Face & How To Overcome It

For the past 20-plus years, I’ve made it a habit to ask sales managers, “What is the biggest challenge you face in becoming the best you can be?” The answer is always the same: not enough time. The simple truth is that all of us have the same amount of time in a day. Yet some sales managers seem to have plenty of time to coach their reps and others [...]

October 24th, 2017|

Every Conversation With a Rep Is a Coaching Opportunity

As I’m sure you know from personal experience, the single biggest complaint that sales managers make is their lack of time for coaching their reps. Developing clear priorities and managing your time better is, of course, a big part of the solution. A completely different tactic is summarized in a comment that a client recently made to me: “The sales managers in my company are starting to treat every interaction [...]

October 17th, 2017|

The Costly Impact of Untrained Sales Managers

According to the Sales Management Association’s March 2016 Research Report titled “Sales Manager Training,” 41% of companies participating in the survey had allocated zero budget for sales manager training. And of the 59% who did have a budget, half of those companies were delivering only generic management training—nothing specific to leading a sales team. This is disheartening news for those of us who consider the frontline sales manager position to [...]

October 12th, 2017|

Sales Managers Need to Stop Solving Their Reps’ Problems

A sales director contacted me to talk about an issue he’d noticed with his sales managers. “I was sorting my emails one morning and I saw that all the ones about problems with our accounts were originating from the sales managers not the reps. It was the managers who were taking action to resolve account problems. It’s like they owned the account, not the reps. That seemed backwards to me.” [...]

October 11th, 2017|

5 Questions to Improve a Rep’s Proposals and Presentations

This blog is part of TopLine Leadership’s series called Sales Coaching 101. On the first Tuesday of every month, we’ll cover a fundamental skill that helps sales managers interact more effectively with their sales reps. Many salespeople miss the mark in their proposals and presentations. They’ve been taught that they want to position their company as a “solution provider” … but their actual proposal or presentation doesn’t describe the problem [...]

October 2nd, 2017|
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