I normally urge business owners to focus on the bigger picture, but sometimes during coaching, I want them to focus on the practical, tactical elements of how you need to execute. It’s very important to align the sales actions with the sales goals, since, even though we try hard to manage the end result, we can only manage the actions and what our sales reps are doing.
As a result, when you effectively manage the sales actions of your team, they are far more likely to achieve your sales goals the majority of the time, (provided they were the right activities.) Doing this time and again ultimately realizes the business outcomes. I’ve said this a thousand times: the sales process must be effective AND repeatable, otherwise it won’t survive the long haul.
You probably haven’t thought about this, however it’s is really important to understand that your sales staff has almost zero trust and credibility when they make their initial “cold visit,” so they must learn simple ways to establish that credibility quickly. (Good sales coaching does this!) If they don’t convey trustworthiness, they won’t make sales.
So, how do they build credibility quickly?
- Do their homework on the prospect
- Know six or eight key facts about the business or facility
- Know key names and ask for them by name
- Learn to ask “power questions”
- Be willing to ask the “hard” questions
- Know how to “paint” a vivid picture or story
- Learn how to ask for the sale
Unfortunately, most sales managers are not positioned to succeed because they lack the full complement of coaching skills necessary to successfully manage their sales teams. I often hear “sales managers” claim to be qualified simply because they were in charge of a sales staff. Unfortunately, that doesn’t make them effective or valid.
Sales managers really should be sales coaches, and that would involve:
- Setting Goals and Priorities
- Good time management
- Leadership, motivation and guidance
- Sales Performance Reviews
- Know the motivators of each sales team member
- Know the client, their pains and their “language”
If you don’t have a good sales coach, then you are seriously hampering the likelihood of great sales success from your sales team!
Author: Dick Wagner, Nationally recognized Sales Coach