Even if your sales reps are strong individually, sometimes you might find that your sales team is weak as a whole. Sales managers need strong sales teams. Strong sales teams work together toward common goals, share insights and leads, and help each other to stay up-to-date on new technologies and sales strategies.
When you build such a sales team, sales in your organization will build momentum, and everyone will benefit. The following are three things sales managers can do to build a stronger sales team.
Focus on Coaching, Not Training
Training happens when a boss explains to an employer how to do a specific job. Of course, training is essential with any job, but a good sales manager will recognize that a sales team needs more guidance than just how to navigate the sales process.
Sales people find more success and satisfaction in their jobs when they receive ongoing coaching from their sales managers. Coaching is more than training; it's helping individual sales people to reach their personal goals, improve their skills, and strengthen their weaknesses. Coaching can be accomplished through one-on-one coaching sessions or simply through the careful observation and gentle guidance of a sales manager who pays close attention to each sales rep on the team.
As each sales person is coached to improve skills, the entire sales team is strengthened. Sales people feel more valued when their sales manager takes the time to coach them, and in turn, they feel they have more to contribute to the team as a whole.
Set Team Goals
If your sales team has been competitive to the point that they don't work together as a team, it may be time to set some team goals. Team goals help all of your sales people to remember that they're working together toward a common goal, even though they have personal goals as well.
Give our sales team an incentive to reach a team goal. For example, you could propose that if the entire team sees a 5% increase in overall sales in the next quarter, each member of the team will receive a bonus. Such an incentive can motivate your sales people to work together, share leads, team up to tackle difficult assignments, and be each other's cheerleaders.
Especially if your sales people work variable hours or in different locations, it's important to keep everyone connected if you want to build a stronger sales team. Working in sales can be lonely at times if you don't stay connected with your sales team.
There are plenty of apps and software programs to help your sales team to keep up with each other's schedules and leads, but it's also nice to have a regular face-to-face time to check in, build camaraderie, and spend time trouble-shooting and talking about successes and challenges. Setting a once-a-month business lunch or a weekly Google Hangout can help you to accomplish these goals. A close sales team is a strong sales team, so do what you can to cultivate relationships among team members.
Sales managers can build stronger sales teams by focusing on coaching, setting team goals, and helping team members to stay connected. When you do these things, the members of your sales team will be more supportive of each other, and your team will experience more overall success.