Being a salesperson isn’t an easy job, in fact it is one of the toughest jobs at the moment with the constant raising of standards, targets and current competition in the business world. Many managers are looking to constantly maximize the efficiency of their sales team to ensure that the maximum profit is being achieved; of course this may come at some cost, with the employees prone to stress in a highly competitive environment. This article looks at ways to healthily push your sales team to individually meet their expectations and move beyond them.
- Motivate with rewards more than just with commission: Every sales team will be motivated by standard commission from a sale, but why not implement more than just a simple commission reward. There are a few stories on the internet about sale departments that actually reward rejections, with this one company rewarding a $100 gift card to the employee who received the most ‘no’s’ that week. A few other rewards could be social ones such as dinner, lunch or maybe even a night out at the weekend all paid for, this is where your creativity comes in.
- Set clear expectations: Having a clear set of goals and targets serves people as a reminder of what they should be aiming for. Aiming straight for success may be a daunting task that involves many steps in between, setting goals frequently will help break down the steps into more achievable goals. These expectations should be flexible, implementing gradually increasing expectations over time is an effective way to up the standards, as opposed to suddenly raising them in the space of a week.
- Integrate the team: Humans in general are hardwired to be social creatures, this should be no different when in a sales team, your employees and colleagues should consider themselves friends, rather than simply just co-workers. This breaks the barriers between each other and promotes a more friendly environment.
- Offer one-to-one support for people who are stressed or struggling: Being a salesperson isn’t easy as mentioned before, it is one of the most demanding jobs both mentally and physically due to the natural toxicity towards salespeople from the customers and general public. It takes a strong person to constantly pick up the phone knowing that most of the people they ring will turn them down, perhaps even in a hostile manner. A way to handle this is to simply not dwell on the failures, just try to move on and look forward to the ‘yes’.As a sales manager, you must have the understanding that this job will affect your colleagues and it is wise to always offer your support and guidance when needed, even if it’s just to listen to their rants. Or, hire a Coach to work directly with an individual if they are really struggling. If people are feeling stressed on the job, it will translate into bad results because their mood will affect their actions.
- Professional training: Many companies will offer in-house training sessions for their departments, whether it be for hard skills or soft skills such as interpersonal communications, these training courses are intended to push their sales team to learn more and be ambitious about what they can do. Some companies use third party training providers who deliver sales and marketing courses, these have a price tag on them but many argue it is worth it due to the amount of knowledge you gain from them, along with the whole experience.
At the end of the day, your sales team should always be treated with the respect they deserve from being in a highly competitive and demanding environment. There are more methods that can be used to push your sales team, but remember, always keep it healthy and done in good nature.
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Motivational Keynote Speaker & Business Growth Expert, Meridith Elliott Powell works with clients to help them instill ownership at every level to ensure profits at every turn. Meridith is the author of several books, including her latest, Winning In The Trust & Value Economy: a professional’s guide to business and sales success. When not keynoting and leading workshops, she looks for inspiration cycling, golfing or hiking her favorite trail. http://meridithelliottpowell.com