Coaching your salespeople is the key to keeping your sales team motivated, skilled, and caught up on all of the latest best practices in your industry. Sales training and coaching is one of the best ways that you can invest in your sales department. Consistent, high-quality sales training gives your salespeople the skills and tools they need to navigate the fast-paced modern market. From learning how to overcome objections to qualifying prospects, sales coaching can be the answer to your sales department’s biggest problems!
Unfortunately, there are a handful of mistakes that companies commonly make when approaching their sales coaching. These critical errors don’t just slow down their sales team’s progress – they completely kill the organization’s coaching efforts. If your business is making any of these critical sales training mistakes that we’ll introduce in this blog, you are losing money.
Everyone from professional athletes to high-performing salespeople knows that consistency is the key to success. The more stable and predictable our habitat is, the better we perform. If the environment around us becomes chaotic and uncertain, our capacity to operate effectively decreases – the world grinds to a halt.
What does this have to do with sales coaching, you ask? Although nearly everyone agrees that routine and regularity are the keys to business success, few companies are highly consistent with their sales training. Even today, when sales coaching is more accessible than ever, businesses only engage their salespeople in these exercises every once in a while. Companies are so worried about spending too much on sales training that they don’t invest nearly enough.
What ends up happening is that their salespeople don’t get enough consistent training and reinforcement to apply what they learn from coaching to the real world. Instead, they spend hours learning techniques and skills that they’ll end up forgetting in a week. If you want your sales coaching to work, it must be consistent. Your salespeople should undergo simulations and training exercises multiple times every week to prepare for the challenges they’ll encounter when facing real clients. When it comes to sales coaching, you either do it all the way or not at all – there’s no in-between. Inconsistent coaching kills your team’s sales success.
Lack of Individual Motivation
You can offer your salespeople all of the coaching opportunities in the world, but if they aren’t motivated enough to utilize them, your training won’t work. Sales coaching is about more than creating coaching opportunities. It’s about inspiring your people to take advantage of them and improve. If your salespeople aren’t actively looking for possibilities to enhance their skills through independent work and cooperation, your sales coaching is unlikely to be effective.
If you want your sales team to make the most out of their training, you must inspire them to take their improvement into their own hands. This is where influential leadership comes in. If you want your sales coaching to work, you can’t just tell your salespeople how it will help the company. You must also explain how it will help them directly. Show them how investing in themselves and their skills is the key to their professional and personal success. Motivated salespeople are effective salespeople. And if this doesn’t work, then its time to “hug them out the door”. Share with them that it is no longer a good fit, and that its best, even for them, to explore new opportunities.
From sales to customer service, communication is at the heart of your company’s ability to function. The more openly and effectively your people and departments can communicate, the more efficient and coordinated your business will be. The same applies to your sales coaching.
If your salespeople can’t communicate honestly and directly about the struggles and challenges they encounter, you won’t be able to coach them. Many individuals on sales teams are scared to ask questions. They worry that their coworkers and superiors will look down on them for not knowing something. What ends up happening is that the salespeople bottle up all of these issues instead of finding a solution. This leads to a decrease in the performance of your sales department, a loss of self-esteem for your salespeople, and causes poor mental health and burnout. If your salespeople feel unable or discouraged from talking about their problems at work, you are missing out on countless organic coaching opportunities.
The solution: enable open communication within your sales team. Take time weekly to meet individually with all of your salespeople. Don’t just ask them about the problems they encounter at work – take an interest in their lives. The more your people feel comfortable sharing their personal lives and aspirations with you, the more likely they’ll be to come forward about obstacles at work! Here’s our guideline. Listen, then pause. Then listen again, then pause. Then ask for clarification and examples, then listen, and then pause. Then you can speak.
There you have it – the three critical mistakes that kill your sales coaching potential. This brief blog was a rough overview of what we discuss in our ebook, 5 Sales Coaching Tactics Your Team Can Start Using Today. In the guide, five expert panelists introduce their best practices and tactics for sales team development. Whether you need help communicating with your sales team or want inspiration for scheduling your sales coaching sessions, this ebook has the answers you need! We’ll show you everything from how to use buddy system coaching, to the strategies for creating effective and affordable in-house sales training! Click here to read the ebook now.