It’s simple…at least on the face of it.
If your sales organization wants to increase profits you need a high-performing sales team. And if you want a high-performing sales team, you’d better embrace coaching as a winning strategy. The truth is that a sales leader’s approach to coaching can make the difference between mediocre performance and highly effective sales teams.
AchieveGlobal and CSO Insights recently hosted a webinar titled, “Sales Leadership: Coaching for Top Performance” and during our discussion, host and Managing Partner of CSO Insights, Jim Dickie, provided listeners with some important data that point to one key fact: coaching is absolutely integral to improving sales. Here are some salient takeaways that Jim mentioned in his introduction:
Deals vs. Leads
When sales leaders are trying to build the effectiveness of the sales team, they often drive them to generate more leads. The company invests time and resources to increase lead-gen, but to what end? Once the leads are generated, is the company truly equipped to transform the leads into closed deals? Instead, Dickie notes that companies should strike the right balance between resources spent on leads and resources spent on closing deals.
Quality vs. Activity
When companies focus on getting more leads in the pipeline, this can often have the effect of a downward turn in productivity. CSO Insights research points to the fact that when lead-generation activity alone is increased, deals often result in “no decision.” On the other hand, when companies maintain the same lead-gen activity and focus on increasing quality of sales interactions, there’s a marked decrease in “no decisions.”
Support and Retain
Research also points to the fact that salespeople tend to stay with companies where sales managers give them support and mentoring. Intelligence also suggests that companies that can retain productive sales representatives over a longer period of time increasingly benefit from the tenure of those sales team members.
Train, train, train
We’ve all heard the tale of the once-star player who tried to become a coach…and failed. Not every great salesperson is naturally equipped to become a great sales manager. So if a company decides that it wants to promote an effective salesperson into a managerial position, it needs to support that person with the necessary training.
But what does it mean to build a winning sales team? And how does coaching fit into that picture? I’ll invite you to return next week to read my next post about how one of our clients built a layered, more assertive, yet balanced sales culture that resulted in markedly improved sales performance.
Sharon Daniels is CEO of AchieveGlobal in Tampa, Florida