Is Managing Your Sales Team Your Toughest Job?
Whether you’re the Vice President of Sales, a sales manager, or a CEO of a growing company, managing, developing, and inspiring your sales team must be one of your top priorities. When your people aren’t in the market generating new business, it has a ripple effect that starts at the top and trickles down to the bottom line.
If you have a dedicated sales team whose members know that they’re sales people, you have an advantage. These sales people know that they need to make sales in order to have a successful career. You set the parameters, and work with them to achieve their goals.
Easier said than done, isn’t it?
And what if your people don’t think that they’re in sales? This is the classic scenario in professional services firms, for example. The expert – the lawyer, the accountant, the consultant – see themselves as subject matter experts, not as sales people. The challenge of motivating seasoned professionals to develop new business can be daunting.
Do you ever lose sleep over this?
To view a snapshot of your sales team’s potential, review the following list and check any that apply. My sales professionals:
- Are comfortable with the label of “salesperson”
- Have top notch technical expertise
- Are able to adapt their personal style to different personality types
- Manage their time and priorities well
- Know that they sell and are comfortable selling
- Are committed to ongoing professional development and learning
- Create a sales plan and work that plan
- Are client-centered
- Want to achieve financial success
We don’t need to give you an evaluation scale for you to interpret your results. The reality is that many dedicated sales efforts focus solely on the second item, and if this is true for your organization, you’re short sighted. Your people need a lot more than technical expertise to successfully sell.
All ten elements are integral for successful selling. And although you may understand this, there may be a gap between your knowledge of what it takes for sales success and how to lead and guide your people to become more effective.
We know that many of you find yourself in this position of running a sales effort without really taking the time to identify what it takes to be successful in that role. You’ve been promoted – or your company has reorganized – or the firm has downsized – any of these scenarios can result in someone becoming in charge of sales development without having any training or coaching in what it takes to be successful.
As you develop in the sales management role, it will be well worth your time to identify what it takes to be successful in this position and within the culture of your organization.
© 2016 Lisa M. Aldisert