Sales grow when people grow. In order to produce a high performing sales team, sales managers need to spend at least 50 per cent of their time coaching their reps. What’s more alarming is that an assessment of over 100,000 sales managers shows they have just 44 per cent of the skills necessary to coach their team.
Many sales leaders are promoted into leadership roles because they were star sellers. But this does not always make them great managers, especially if they have no previous management experience. What many businesses fail to realise is that the skills needed to lead and manage a team are very different. If any of the problems below sound familiar, then a lack of sales coaching is likely the cause.
Do any of these problems sound familiar?
- Inconsistent sales results
- No growth from your sales team
- Unsure if your sales methods are up-to-date in the modern fast paced economy?
- Concerned at the costs for external training?
- Travel and logistics fees hurting your bottom line?
- Tired of blowing money on training that results in little, or no change?
1. Inconsistent sales results?
- Sales has changed more in the past 2 years than the past 20 years yet many companies have not adapted. This alone is one of the principle drivers of inconsistency.
- Buyer behaviour has changed radically – use of the internet means they are more informed (research shows they are typically 50-70% through their buying journey by the time they talk to us), they are busier than ever, harder to reach and risk adverse.
- Markets are becoming highly commoditised – everybody looks the same and without good positioning and messaging you will simply get lost in the crowd. There is also market uncertainty, with things here in New Zealand tightening and we now see the housing market and construction industry coming off the boil.
So, if the market has changed, and buyer behaviour has changed, don’t you think it’s time to change the way you sell?
2. No growth from your sales team
- Sales management also plays a major role in inconsistency and/or poor sales results.
- We know that coaching their sales team is the single most important thing they can do to grow sales yet extensive global research from the Objective Management Group, with a sample size exceeding 100,000 sales managers, shows that they have on average just 44% of the competencies to coach their team.
Why is this? In many cases the top sales performer get’s promoted to the role and is given little, if any, training or development. In addition, they are simply not equipped, or given the tools, to develop and grow their team.
3. Unsure if your sales methods are up-to-date in the modern fast-paced economy?
- Outdated sales methodologies are still being taught despite the radical changes we’ve talked about and this leaves you venerable to competitors that have stepped up and adapted.
- Many companies have geographically diverse sales teams or different divisions that utilize completely different methodologies and the impact of this should not be underestimated.
4. Concerned at the costs for external training?
To get good, external training can be expensive and this can be a concern for many company’s. It also makes it difficult and expensive to ramp up new employees and can also create an over-dependency on external providers.
5. Travel and logistics fees hurting your bottom line?
There are also expensive logistical costs to get the sales team together, particularly in geographically diverse markets. In addition, taking sales team out of the field for 1-2 days at a time has a major impact on revenues. Overall it can simply be too expensive and just doesn’t happen.
6. Tired of blowing money on training that results in little, or no change?
Far too often companies simply don’t see a return on investment and research shows that one-off training is largely ineffective with 85-90% reporting no lasting impact after 120 days. Simply put – sales training (on it’s own) doesn’t work.
There are many reasons for this including an over emphasis on skill training with nothing on mindset – the 80%; ignoring the 70/20/10 principle and the short attention span of most sales people!
This article was originally published on SalesStar.