As a sales manager, “what do you think is the number-one activity needed to improve your team’s performance?”
The answer is coaching.
Find time to sit down, one on one, with a sales team member. Then suggest to that individual,
“Hey, let’s you and I practice.”
“I’ll demonstrate. Then you try it. I’ll try, and then you…”
Practice a specific skill or behavior like:
- Creating an opening statement
- Asking a key question
- Overcoming an objection
- Closing a deal
This practice session should be something that you can put together in 5 minutes or less. Then repeat these sessions over and over again.
Rarely, if ever, do sales managers practice with their sales reps. Instead, they talk or lecture about it, thinking they are coaching. That’s not coaching — it’s being annoying or putting your salespeople to sleep.
When you can get your team to demonstrate the skill you’re looking for, you build their confidence — which leads to creating, driving, and sustaining the selling behaviors you want to develop. Surely the right outcomes will follow.