Cold Calling Training | Skills + Practice = Success

Cold Calling Training Courses

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Cold Calling Training – Top question from Google

How do you Train for cold calling?

HERE’S THE SHORT ANSWER:

  1. Thoroughly research your target audience and what’s important to them
  2. Ensure you know exactly how your product or service impacts your customer and the value it delivers
  3. Plan your day and make sure you have prepared your call lists in advance
  4. Use a CRM or other tool to track every call you make
  5. Use email and social media in combination to increase your success
  6. Slow down – build rapport first and add value before you ask for anything
  7. Embrace the NO’s, don’t take it personally and understand, success is following your process consistently
  8. If you are not getting more No’s than Yeses then you are not talking to enough people
  9. Test everything and keep testing everything, so you can learn and improve

Some sales people dread the thought of cold calling, and many customers hate receiving endless cold calls from various companies trying to sell them products or services that they don’t want.

In this changing world, many of us don’t even make a phone call in our personal lives, as we swap traditional phone calls for instant messaging and social media.

However, cold calling is a tried and tested sales channel which has been used for decades to secure new customers, and can still play an important part in your outbound sales strategy.  

Whilst cold calling might not seem to be the in thing, most companies still have some form of cold calling operations. In fact, cold calling is considered to be the most used sales technique in the world.

Consultative Sales Training

1. Cold calling is dead, long live cold calling

The way in which modern buyers operate has changed. Many buyers are more savvy now, and don’t like to be sold to, but they do like to buy.

With this in mind, you might think that cold calling has had its day, and should be consigned to the bin. Whilst the world has moved on, cold calling can still be a really effective sales tool.

Salespeople do however need to adapt their practices to suit the modern buyer. Gone are the days of aimlessly working through a spreadsheet, today’s cold callers need to work in a much more targeted and smarter way.

If you’re considering using cold calling as a route to market it’s important your sales reps are properly trained and not simply “winging” it on every call. Our telephone cold calling course will help your sales reps develop a positive attitude, refine your cold calling process, improve their objection handling skills and sales techniques.

2. What is the definition of a cold call?

A cold call is simply when you telephone a stranger who is not expecting your call. At some stage it is highly likely that we have either cold called someone, or been cold called ourselves, either in a work capacity or in our personal lives.

If you have met the potential customer previously at a trade show or had some previous communication with them, then that is not a cold call.

Similarly, if you have corresponded with the prospective buyer before, maybe sent them some promotional material either via email or LinkedIn, this is not a cold call.

The latter examples are called “Warm Calling”, which typically has a much higher success rate, but as you would expect, lead in times and costs are more expensive for warm calling.

Why Sales Training is Important
Cold Calling Training Course

3. Cold Calling Training

Many sales people do not get sufficient cold calling training, either in terms of quantity or quality. This may be because companies they are reluctant to invest in their teams and assume that in cold calling the volume of calls is king.

However, this approach is counterproductive to creating and maintaning a good brand, securing new customers and increasing profits and revenue for your company.

One bad cold call could have ramifications for your business, as it could give a negative impression of your business and destroy your brand reputation.

Not only can this mean that the person being cold called will be very unlikely to order from your company, but they may tell their colleagues and business network of their poor experience, starting a chain of dissatisfaction. If this happens time and time again, it could become a major problem for your business.

Cold calling is a difficult job, there is no getting away from that. As you are jumping into the unknown you have no idea as to who is on the other side, they could be aggressive towards you, or just look to play with you and waste your time.

However, all of that anguish can be overcome by the feeling of success in pulling off a sale or booking a meeting, where originally there may have been little chance of success.

Like most things in life, you get out of cold calling what you put in. If you are willing to learn, and put in the hard graft of calling a seemingly endless array of people, you will get some success.

Making cold calls and repeating the cold calling process will help cement those practices into your sales pitch, but it may take thousands of calls for you to perfect it.

Unfortunately, somewhere along those thousands of calls, you are likely to encounter a troublesome customer and a lot of rejection. It is important that you don’t let this put you off.

Klozers offer specialist cold calling training courses, which can be a useful investment if your cold calling isn’t getting the right results, or you want to try to source new customers via cold calling techniques.

There are also a whole host of videos and books on sales training (and specifically telephone sales), which can give great tips and insights. However, for many, this is only a substitute for good sales training and experience. 

Our cold calling training is popular with both new sales reps, and existing people who want to improve their cold calling techniques.

4. Marketing vs Telesales

Unsurprisingly, almost all marketing executives will tell you that telephone prospecting is a waste of time, and companies should focus their attention on marketing – resulting in greater budgets for their teams.

Marketing is hugely important, however, it is reactive and not pro-active, and that might not work for you. 

As an example, if you have a proven niche software solution and are selling into a vertical such as Hotel Chains within the Hospitality sector, would you wait on all the Hotels seeing your marketing material and then contacting you, or simply get your business development team to contact them directly?

Yes, in an ideal world they will be familiar with your brand before the sales reps contact them, but the point is you would never advocate sitting around waiting on them to contact you.

Effective modern businesses should look to combine both of these techniques. Cold calling has its place, but marketing should always be viewed as the main lead generator for the business.

Cold Calling Training Course

4. What makes a good Telesales Team?

* Preparation

When we think of cold calling, we might think of sales reps being in an endless rush, jumping from potential customer to potential customer without a thought. However, proper preparation is an important part of successful cold calling. In some instances, scripts can be a useful tool. If scripts are used then the sales rep should prepare and learn the script, so they can sound engaging on the phone, rather than robotic.

* Record Keeping

Keeping track of your progress as a cold caller is an important part of the cold calling process. It can be demoralising making call after call and getting making no progress, but if the company or sales person keeps an efficient log of call rates then this can motivate the sales reps. For example, if a cold calling sales team know they have a success rate of 1 in 50, and the sales person has made 15 calls without any success, they know that this can be a common occurrence and if they use their skills correctly a sale may be round the corner.

* Plan for the day ahead

Modern business is full of statistics, and every last detail can be logged somewhere. This can be useful in looking at the success rates of cold calling. Are there particular times of the day, days of the week, or parts of the month when telephone prospecting is more successful than others.

If clear patterns emerge then sales teams should double up their efforts to take advantage of the successful patterns. When cold calling is less successful then this time could be better spent on team training or meetings. It would be poor team planning if a weekly meeting was scheduled on the most successful time of the week!

If it takes you a couple of calls in the morning to full get into the swing of things, then you can always keep your best prospects back a couple of hours, or even keep them until the time/day when you know cold calls are more successful. You will however, need to work around the availability of the buyer.

* Follow Up

Following up with a cold call contact is vitally important. During the phone call you might think that the person isn’t interested, but even a short follow up email could bring them onto your side. The buyer may not have heard about your company before, and be sceptical of your business claims.

If they are provided with some material material and links to your website, they can corroborate your information themselves, which is a powerful tool. Emails which are sent after a cold call have a surprisingly high open rate.

* Practice makes permanent

If you want to be good at something you need to practice, practice and practice some more. It is thought that to become a cold calling expert you need to dedicate 10,000 hours to doing it.

You will need to guard against practice making bad habits permanent. It can be easy to rid ourselves or our sales teams of bad traits if they don’t do it too often or they have just started, but once they are embedded it can be much harder to get rid off.

Therefore, it is important that salespeople receive training prior to starting cold calling, and that regular sales training and review procedures are in place to avoid problems becoming permanent.

* Share ideas and experience across the team

Sales people are naturally competitive people, they will want to beat their colleagues in the number of sales or appointments secured. However, there is a lot to be said for teamwork. Debriefing at the end of the day can be used to refine sales pitches to what works and what doesn’t work. Sharing experiences both good cold calls and bad can also be reassuring to colleagues.

Cold calls don’t always go to plan, and it can be a good idea to expect the unexpected, and prepare as an individual or as a team for what response you should give in unexpected circumstances.

Record Sales Calls

5. What makes cold calling so difficult?

As we said earlier cold calling is difficult, but don’t let that put you off making it an important part of your sales strategy. Modern buyers have become more adapt to fending of pushy salespeople, especially if it is via a cold call.

Cold calling has a low conversion rate, meaning that cold callers will need to make a significant number of calls to secure an appointment or order. It is thought the average conversion rate of securing an appointment via cold calls is between 1 – 3%.

Inevitably not everyone who agrees to an appointment will place an order, so its success can be low.

Securing a telephone number of a prospective client can be a difficult task in itself. Many major businesses do not advertise the relevant information, leaving salespeople to bounce between departments trying to find the right person.

6. Cold Calling Training Courses

Klozers offer specialist cold calling courses for any industry, which can help your sales team improve their cold calling skills and success rate. Courses are suitable for new salespeople and experienced salespeople who might need a refresher.

Sales Courses can be tailored to the needs of the attendees, so if there is an issues which is specific to a particular industry, it can be addressed in the training. Whilst not technically cold calling, our courses can also include how to convert incoming sales calls.

Cold calling training can include high paced boot camps which cram a lot of learning into one day. The fast-paced environment of a boot camp training session is well matched with the fast pace of cold calling.

As people learn through experience, many training sessions include live demonstrations of cold calling skills, and role play to improve learning outcomes.

Some companies limit the amount of participants from any one company attending a training session together. This ensures that the sessions aren’t dominated by the concerns of requirements of one single company. It also allows the sharing of ideas from different companies to benefit everyone.

Like many businesses cold calling providers have adapted their practices in response to the changing world of COVID-19. Online cold calling courses are now far more common than they would have been a few years ago. This can reduce the time and expense of travel.

Bespoke training packages are available, which includes ongoing 1-2-1 sales coaching, which can be useful to continuously motivate your sales team, keep their performance fresh and vibrant and ensure that bad habits don’t creep in.

7 Gründe, warum Sie Web Based Sales Training in Betracht ziehen sollten

webbasiertes Verkaufstraining

Webbasiertes Verkaufstraining - Top-Frage von Google

Ist Online-Verkaufstraining effektiv?

Online-Verkaufsschulungen sind effektiv, weil sie Organisationen helfen

  • Reduzieren Sie die Reisezeit zu Live-Events
  • Sorgen Sie für eine bessere Work-Life-Balance, indem Sie die Zeit reduzieren, die Vertriebsmitarbeiter nicht zu Hause verbringen
  • Reduzierte Lieferkosten für Verkaufsschulungen
  • Schnellere Kommunikation und Zusammenarbeit
  • Stärkung neuer Verkaufsstrategien und -taktiken nach der Erstausbildung
  • Verbesserte Rechenschaftspflicht, um Verkäufern bei neuen Verhaltensweisen zu helfen
  • Laufende Betreuung bestehender und neuer Vertriebsmitarbeiter


Die Online-Verkaufsschulung hat sich dramatisch verbessert und sollte als Teil Ihrer allgemeinen Verkaufsschulung betrachtet werden.

Webbasiertes Verkaufstraining oder Online-Verkaufstraining ist seit dem Aufkommen von Lockdowns und dem darauf folgenden Trend zur Heimarbeit zu einem wesentlichen Aspekt der Verkaufsausbildung geworden.

Die Kunst der Virtualität hat sich zu einem Vorteil für jede Branche entwickelt, um von zu Hause aus zu arbeiten oder zu studieren.

Trotzdem haben viele Unternehmen Schwierigkeiten, einen umfassenden Business Case für Online-Schulungen im Vergleich zum traditionelleren Ansatz im Präsenzunterricht bereitzustellen.

Während Präsenzschulungen immer noch eine wichtige Rolle in der Verkaufsausbildung spielen, sind hier einige Bereiche, die Sie bei der Bewertung der verschiedenen verfügbaren Optionen berücksichtigen sollten.

#Webbasiertes Verkaufstraining

1. Reduzierte Reisezeit

Traditionell wurden Face-to-Face-Schulungen im Rahmen von ein- und zweitägigen Veranstaltungen durchgeführt. In den meisten Fällen fanden sie in Hotels und Konferenzzentren statt. Da immer mehr Unternehmen Vertriebsteams beschäftigen, die geografisch weit entfernt sind, könnten einige Teilnehmer einen Tag damit verbringen, an der Veranstaltung teilzunehmen, und einen Tag, um nach Hause zurückzukehren. Das sind drei Tage für einen Tag Lernen.

Mit Web Based Training müssen Sie nicht Hunderte von Kilometern fahren, nur um zur Arbeit zu kommen. Sie müssen nicht früh aufstehen, um dem Berufsverkehr zu entgehen, und Sie brauchen kein großes Budget, um loszulegen.

webbasiertes Verkaufstraining

2. Work-Life-Balance

Zeit für die Familie zu finden, ist für viele Menschen zu einem wichtigen Bestandteil ihres Berufs geworden. Hybrides Arbeiten hat es vielen Menschen ermöglicht, langwierige Pendelwege zu eliminieren, sodass sie zusätzliche wertvolle Zeit mit ihren Lieben verbringen können.

Webbasierte Verkaufsschulungen sind Teil dieser Lösung und bieten entweder Schulungen im eigenen Tempo oder strukturierte Online-Kurse, an denen Verkaufsteams von zu Hause aus teilnehmen können.

3. Versandkosten

Traditionell wurden persönliche Schulungen für Vertriebsteams in Klassenzimmern und Hotelkonferenzräumen durchgeführt. Hinzu kommen die Kosten für die Übernachtung bei persönlichen Schulungsveranstaltungen, und die Kosten können selbst für ein kleines Team schnell in die Höhe schnellen.

Viele Schulungsanbieter werden die Reduzierung der Lieferkosten an die Kunden weitergeben, da sie selbst Reise- und Übernachtungskosten für ihre Verkaufstrainer sparen.

4. Schnellere Zusammenarbeit und Kommunikation

Die meisten traditionellen Trainings würden als „Impact-Training“ bezeichnet werden. Sie sind einmalige Veranstaltungen, die das Lernen und die Entwicklung ankurbeln sollen.

Obwohl es immer noch einen Platz für diese Art von Schulung gibt, haben viele Unternehmen festgestellt, dass Verkäufer Hilfe brauchen, wenn sie Hilfe brauchen. Sie wollen ihre Frage nicht für die nächste Verkaufsschulung in drei Monaten aufsparen. Webbasiertes Verkaufstraining bietet Lernen auf Knopfdruck, wenn die Verkäufer es am meisten brauchen.

Das Online-Training von Klozers bietet unseren Kunden Echtzeit-Support per Live-Chat und E-Mail. Unser webbasiertes Team unterstützt unsere Kunden “in the moment”, damit sie während der Arbeit lernen können.

5. Verstärkung der Ausbildung

Viele Studien haben gezeigt, dass die Teilnehmer bis zu 95 % der Inhalte von ein- und zweitägigen Schulungen ohne jegliche Form der Wiederholung vergessen können.

Unabhängig von der Qualität des Verkaufstrainers oder der Schulungsinhalte können Verkäufer einfach nicht alle Informationen aufnehmen, die sie in ein- und zweitägigen Verkaufsschulungen erhalten. Verkaufstraining korreliert direkt mit Wachstum in der persönlichen Entwicklung und dies geschieht nicht über Nacht.

Änderungen an Verkaufsstrategie, Verkaufstechniken, Verkaufsprozess und Verkaufsfähigkeiten tragen alle zum Verkaufserfolg bei, müssen aber mit einer langfristigen Perspektive angegangen werden. Es gibt keinen Zauberstab im Verkauf, und der Verkaufserfolg entsteht durch harte Arbeit und die Entwicklung Ihrer Vertriebsmitarbeiter im Hinblick auf die Gesamtverkaufsleistung.

Webbasierte Verkaufsschulungen werden in der Regel über längere Zeiträume verteilt und funktionieren durch einen Drip-Effekt, bei dem Inhalte in einem „wenig und oft“-Format geliefert werden, das leichter zu verarbeiten ist.

6. Vertriebsverantwortung

Einer der wichtigsten Bestandteile der besten Verkaufsschulungen ist die Durchführung und Betreuung nach der Schulung. Nicht nur Ihre Vertriebsmitarbeiter benötigen Unterstützung, sondern auch Ihr Vertriebsmanagement benötigt Hilfe bei der Umsetzung von Änderungen im Verkaufsprozess, in den Verkaufsfähigkeiten und im Verhalten des Vertriebsteams.

Leider nehmen viele Vertriebsprofis an Schulungen teil und kehren dann zu ihrem Job zurück und machen weiter, was sie immer getan haben. Das ist kein Erfolgsrezept.

Veränderung ist für jeden Menschen schwierig und die meisten von uns brauchen Unterstützung, um dies zu tun. Mit webbasiertem Training bietet Klozers kontinuierliche Coaching-Unterstützung sowohl für die Kursteilnehmer als auch für ihre Vertriebsleiter, um sicherzustellen, dass alle Änderungen im Verkaufsprozess, neue Verkaufsfähigkeiten und Verhaltensweisen vollständig übernommen werden.

7. Laufender Support

Viele Unternehmen stellen nach jeder Schulungsveranstaltung weiterhin neue Mitarbeiter ein. Dies kann einfach der Ersatz von Vertriebsmitarbeitern sein, die das Unternehmen verlassen haben, oder im Rahmen ihrer Expansionspläne.

Es ist oft finanziell nicht tragbar, jedes Mal einen Verkaufstrainer hinzuzuziehen, wenn sich Ihr Verkaufsteam ändert, und die Möglichkeit, neue Mitarbeiter online zu schulen, ist daher enorm wichtig.

Die meisten webbasierten Schulungen erfolgen im eigenen Tempo und können aufgezeichnet werden. Dies kann dann verwendet werden, um eine Bibliothek aufzubauen, auf die sowohl bestehende als auch neue Vertriebsprofis kontinuierlich zugreifen können.

Traditionelle persönliche Schulungen werden immer einen Platz in der modernen Vertriebsausbildung haben, aber es ist wichtig, die Alternativen zu berücksichtigen. Während Budgets und individuelle Umstände immer berücksichtigt werden müssen, ist webbasiertes Training hier, um zu bleiben und ein wichtiger Bestandteil jedes laufenden Vertriebsschulungsprogramms zu sein.

Klozers bietet ein umfassendes Angebot an Präsenz- und webbasierten Verkaufsschulungen. Jede dieser Veranstaltungen bietet Live-Schulungen an, bei denen die Teilnehmer interagieren können.

Ergänzend zu unseren Schulungen unterstützen wir Sie laufend durch Verkaufscoachings. Wenn Ihre Vertriebsmitarbeiter Hilfe bei der Entwicklung Ihres Wertversprechens, der Verkaufsakquise, der Verkürzung Ihres Verkaufszyklus, der Verkaufskompetenz, der Gewinnung von Folgegeschäften oder Verkaufspräsentationen benötigen, würden wir uns freuen, mit Ihnen zu sprechen.

Unser Ziel ist es, Ihnen dabei zu helfen, Ihre Geschäftsziele zu erreichen, Ihre Verkaufsziele zu senken und den angestrebten Verkaufserfolg zu erzielen.

Vorlage zur Überprüfung der Verkaufsleistung

Cover der Verkaufsleistungsbewertungsvorlage

There’s a new way to deliver sales growth…

Don’t buy Sales Training until you’ve watched this video

Vorlage für die Überprüfung der Verkaufsleistung - Top-Frage von Google

Wie schreibt man eine Verkaufsleistungsbeurteilung?

Um eine faire und ausgewogene Beurteilung der Verkaufsleistung zu verfassen, sollten Sie:

  • Führen Sie monatlich Leistungsbeurteilungen durch
  • Verwenden Sie eine Vorlage zur Überprüfung der Vertriebsleistung, um Konsistenz sicherzustellen, Aktionen aufzuzeichnen und Verantwortlichkeit sicherzustellen
  • Basieren Sie die Bewertung nach Möglichkeit auf Daten und nicht auf Meinungen
  • Verknüpfung von Verkaufsleistung mit Coaching, Gehalt und Karriereentwicklung
  • Verknüpfen Sie die Verkaufsleistung, um die Entwicklung neuer Verkaufsfertigkeiten zu fördern

Füllen Sie das Formular auf der rechten Seite aus und laden Sie unsere Vorlage für die Bewertung der Vertriebsleistung herunter.

Sie können dies an Ihre individuelle Situation anpassen und innerhalb einer Stunde damit beginnen, die Verkaufsleistung zu steigern.

Warum Leistungsbeurteilungen im Vertrieb wichtig sind

Viele Unternehmen und Vertriebsleiter übersehen die Bedeutung regelmäßiger und strukturierter Leistungsbeurteilungen mit ihren Vertriebsmitarbeitern. Manchmal wissen sie, wie wichtig diese Meetings sind, aber sie rutschen aus dem Terminkalender wegen anderer Belastungen innerhalb des Unternehmens.

In den meisten Fällen werden Mitarbeiter auf eine jährliche Leistungsbeurteilung reduziert, die wenig dazu beiträgt, die Leistung zu bewerten, geschweige denn das berufliche Wachstum voranzutreiben.

Es gibt unzählige Gründe, warum Sie sich Zeit für diese Meetings nehmen sollten, wahrscheinlich keiner mehr für die Mitarbeiterbindung. Die Kosten für die Suche und Einstellung guter Vertriebsmitarbeiter steigen, daher ist es sicherlich sinnvoll, alles zu tun, um unsere Mitarbeiter nach dieser Investition zu halten.

Die Pandemie, Lockdowns und die Arbeit von zu Hause aus haben alle dazu geführt, dass Vertriebsmitarbeiter ihren Lebensstil und ihre Lebensziele überdenken. Statistiken zeigen, dass im Jahr 2021 48 Millionen Menschen ihren Job kündigen , 41 % der weltweiten Belegschaft erwägen, ihren Job zu kündigen, und 46 % erwägen, in den nächsten 12 Monaten umzuziehen.

Unternehmen und Vertriebsleiter, die ihre Management- und Arbeitsprozesse nur zögerlich neu ausrichten, werden es sicherlich schwer haben, ihre besten Verkäufer zu halten.

Verbesserung der Verkaufsleistung

Leistungsbeurteilungen und 121er sind nicht nur für das Fortkommen eines Mitarbeiters, sondern auch für sein Wohlbefinden von entscheidender Bedeutung. Berufliches Verkaufen kann stressig sein, und psychisches Wohlbefinden ist enorm wichtig.

Sie sind eine gute Möglichkeit, um sicherzustellen, dass sowohl die Ziele des Unternehmens als auch die des Einzelnen erreicht werden und dass die berufliche Laufbahn des Mitarbeiters anerkannt wird.

Wenn ein Vertriebsprofi irgendwelche Herausforderungen in seiner Arbeit oder seinem Privatleben hat, ist eine Leistungsbeurteilung seine Gelegenheit, dies mit seinem Vertriebsleiter zu besprechen.

Eine Leistungsbeurteilung sollte ein sicherer Ort für den Vertriebsmitarbeiter sein, um zu besprechen, welche Bedürfnisse er hat, worin er gut ist und an welchen Bedürfnissen gearbeitet wurde. Weit entfernt von einem ängstlichen und beängstigenden Treffen mit dem Chef, sollten sie ein Ort sein, an dem sie jemanden haben, mit dem sie vertrauensvoll sprechen können.

Als Führungskraft möchten Sie wissen, dass Ihre Mitarbeiter Menschen sind, denen Sie vertrauen können. Im Gegenzug müssen sie dasselbe von Ihnen empfinden, und 121er sind eine großartige Möglichkeit, dies zu tun.

Verkaufsziele festzulegen, zu besprechen, was sie wirklich von der Stelle erwarten und wohin sie wollen, sind ein entscheidender Teil ihrer Position. Wenn sich der Mitarbeiter anerkannt und gehört fühlt, ist er eher geneigt, in seiner Position erfolgreich zu sein und sein Bestes zu geben.

Vertriebsleiter sollten Leistungsbeurteilungen mindestens vierteljährlich durchführen, idealerweise jedoch jeden Monat, damit Sie als Vertriebsleiter die Rolle des Vertriebsmitarbeiters und seine Erwartungen verwalten und das Beste aus ihnen herausholen können.

Cover des SaaS-Vertriebsleitbuchs
Playbook für SaaS-Verkäufe

Was sollte ich in einem Sales Performance Review besprechen?

Modernes Verkaufen hat heute so viele verschiedene Rollen, dass es schwierig ist, eine Einheitsformel für alle im Verkauf bereitzustellen. Beispielsweise unterscheidet sich die Leistungsbeurteilung für einen SDR stark von der eines Account Managers. Wir empfehlen Ihnen dringend, spezifische Bewertungen und Schlüsselkennzahlen auf der Grundlage der verschiedenen Rollen im Vertrieb zu entwickeln.

Der Prozess der Leistungsbeurteilung sollte recht informell gehalten werden – es handelt sich nicht um ein Disziplinargespräch, sondern um einen geschützten Raum, in dem Ihr Mitarbeiter offen und ehrlich sein kann. Ihr Vertriebsmitarbeiter sollte die Möglichkeit haben, in einem privaten Rahmen Fragen zu stellen und eventuelle Probleme anzusprechen.

Bei Klozers basiert unsere Verkaufsmanagement-Philosophie auf den vier hochwertigen Verkaufsbereichen, nämlich:

Finden – was tun wir konsequent und proaktiv, um neue Verkaufschancen und -möglichkeiten zu finden?

Klozing – Wenn wir neue Geschäfte finden, folgen wir dann unserem Verkaufsprozess und maximieren die Chance?

Wachsen – gewinnen wir aktiv neue Kunden und steigern die Einnahmen aus diesen Kunden?

Entwicklung – was tun wir persönlich, um uns zu strecken, zu wachsen, zu lernen und uns weiterzuentwickeln?

Kombinieren Sie diese mit Ihrer Vision und Ihren Grundwerten, und wenn Sie sich auf diese vier Bereiche konzentrieren, ist es einfach unmöglich, nicht mehr zu verkaufen.

Ihre Vertriebsmitarbeiter sollten motiviert und energiegeladen sein. Ein 121 ist eine großartige Möglichkeit, starke Beziehungen zu Ihrem Vertriebsteam aufzubauen und aufrechtzuerhalten. Feedback sollte immer gegeben werden, insbesondere wenn der Mitarbeiter Leistungsprobleme oder Dinge äußert, mit denen er möglicherweise zu kämpfen hat.

Konstruktives Feedback ist nie etwas Schlechtes, aber die Leistung der Mitarbeiter steigt immer nur durch Lob und Anerkennung all der guten Dinge, die sie erreicht haben.

Wenn sie den ganzen Monat hart gearbeitet haben und dies das einzige Mal ist, dass Sie sie einholen müssen, dann ist dies ihre einzige Chance, Lob und Lob zu hören, wodurch sie sich gut fühlen und härter arbeiten werden.

Wenn der Vertriebsprofi nie von seinem Vorgesetzten hört und ihm nie gesagt wird, dass er gute Arbeit leistet, kann er sich manchmal paranoid und nicht geschätzt fühlen – niemand möchte, dass sich sein Vertriebsteam so fühlt.

Vorlage zur Überprüfung der Verkaufsleistung
Beispiele für die Überprüfung der Vertriebsleistung

Roadmap & Karriereweg

Ein entscheidender Teil des Leistungsbeurteilungsprozesses besteht darin, das berufliche Wachstum voranzutreiben und Karriereziele innerhalb des Unternehmens festzulegen: Wo wollen sie in diesem Job hin? Wie können sie dorthin gelangen?

Können sie Erfahrungen in verschiedenen Abteilungen sammeln? Gibt es zusätzliche Schulungen, die sie machen können, um sie schneller dorthin zu bringen?

Klar definierte Lernpfade sind viel einfacher, als die meisten Unternehmen denken, und es ist wichtig, jedem Mitarbeiter einfache Meilensteine vorzugeben, an denen er sich orientieren kann.

Ein Vertriebsprofi sollte als eine Person behandelt werden, die innerhalb des Unternehmens wächst, und nicht nur als Nummer. Die Diskussion verschiedener Karrierewege ist also eine großartige Möglichkeit, dem Vertriebsprofi zu zeigen, wie weit er potenziell gehen kann.

Fortgeschrittenes Verkaufstraining
Klozers Leistungsbewertungen

121's für Vertriebsmitarbeiter, die aus der Ferne arbeiten

Wenn Sie Vertriebsvorbereitungen haben, die remote arbeiten, ist eine 121 genauso wichtig wie Leistungsbeurteilungen. Während die Arbeit von zu Hause aus die Work-Life-Balance vieler Vertriebsprofis verbessert und ihnen geholfen hat, produktiver und kostengünstiger zu sein, kann es für viele isolierend und einsam sein.

Viele Verkäufer sind “Menschenfresser”. Sie gedeihen in der Nähe anderer Menschen, was einer der Gründe ist, warum sie es lieben, im Verkauf zu sein. Die Arbeit von zu Hause aus war für viele ein echter Kulturwandel und für die meisten Verkäufer ein Schock.

Vertriebsmitarbeiter zögern manchmal, sich zu äußern und Fragen in einer Gruppenumgebung zu stellen, oder wenn keine Beziehung zum Vertriebsleiter besteht. Jeder Vertriebsprofi muss sich am Arbeitsplatz wohlfühlen – auch wenn er zu Hause ist.

Für neue Mitarbeiter sind 121er und Teammeetings auch großartige Eisbrecher und eine Möglichkeit, Ihre Kollegen kennenzulernen. Auf diese Weise fühlen sie sich wohler, wenn sie zu Ihnen kommen, wenn sie Hilfe brauchen oder ein Problem haben. Beginnen Sie mit Kennenlerngesprächen.

Diese sind im Vergleich zu einer Leistungsbeurteilung sehr informell und eine großartige Möglichkeit für Sie beide, sich kennenzulernen. Besprechen Sie Vorlieben und Abneigungen, Hobbys und Interessen, was sie gerne in ihrer Freizeit tun. Wenn Sie dies zunächst auf einer persönlichen Ebene halten, wird sich der Mitarbeiter sehr wohl fühlen und höchstwahrscheinlich das Gefühl haben, geschätzt zu werden, dass Sie sich die Zeit genommen haben, ihn kennenzulernen.

Nachverfolgung von Verkaufsleistungsbewertungen

Viele Vertriebsleiter sind Manager und keine Führungskräfte. Die besten Vertriebsmanager arbeiten hart daran, ihre Vertriebsteams zu unterstützen, im Gegensatz zu denen, die ihre Vertriebsmitarbeiter leiten und Tabellenkalkulationen folgen.

Oft besteht der Unterschied zwischen einem Manager und einer Führungskraft einfach in den Dingen, die sie für die Verkäufer tun. Was dem Manager unbedeutend und unwichtig erscheinen mag, kann für Verkäufer das Gegenteil sein. Die besten Manager konzentrieren sich in erster Linie auf die Menschen und erst in zweiter Linie auf die Arbeit.

Angesichts des ständigen Drucks, Verkaufsziele zu erreichen oder zu übertreffen, kann dies jedoch zweifellos schwierig sein.

Als Vertriebsleiter müssen Sie sicherstellen, dass Sie alle Maßnahmen, die Sie in der Leistungsbeurteilung besprochen haben, weiterverfolgen. Eine Aufzeichnung des Treffens sollte immer dokumentiert werden, um den Vertriebsmitarbeitern eine Aufzeichnung über alles zu geben, was besprochen wurde.

Dies bietet auch einen Fahrplan dessen, worauf sie bis zur nächsten Leistungsbeurteilung hinarbeiten werden, und hilft ihnen und dem Vertriebsleiter, zur Rechenschaft gezogen zu werden.

Dies ist eine großartige Möglichkeit, den Fortschritt zu überwachen, da sowohl der Vertriebsleiter als auch der Vertriebsmitarbeiter die Möglichkeit haben, frühere Ziele zu überprüfen und zu besprechen, wo sie in Bezug auf die vereinbarten Ziele stehen und woran gearbeitet werden muss.

Vertriebsleiter sind wohl der wichtigste Teil eines jeden Vertriebsteams. Sie setzen die Messlatte in Bezug auf die Leistung der Mitarbeiter und was akzeptabel ist und was nicht. Gute Vertriebsteams brauchen gute Vertriebsmanager – investieren Sie jetzt in Ihr Vertriebsmanagement.

Vollständiger Leitfaden für das Vertriebsmanagement
Schulungen zum Vertriebsmanagement

SDR-Verkaufstrainingskurse, die funktionieren

SDR sales training courses

There’s a new way to deliver sales growth…

Don’t buy Sales Training until you’ve watched this video

SDR-Verkaufstrainingskurse - Top-Frage von Google

Wie schult man einen SDR?

Die meisten SDR-Schulungen heben die folgenden oder ähnliche Schritte hervor, um Ihr SDR-Team zu schulen:

  • Verwenden Sie eine Vorlage für Vertriebsschulungen.
  • Bereitstellung klarer, auf die Progression ausgerichteter Lernpfade
  • Setzen Sie Erwartungen.
  • Aufbau einer Kultur der Zusammenarbeit.
  • Die Politik des “Keine-dummen-Fragen-stellens”.
  • Erstellen Sie eine Vorlage für SDR/Account Executive Meetings.
  • Bringen Sie Ihrem Vertriebsentwicklungsteam bei, neugierig zu sein.
  • Ständig umsetzbares Feedback geben
  • Geben Sie Ihrem Team Zeit.

Wir sind der Meinung, dass Sie viel mehr als das tun können.

Die Schulung Ihres Teams von Vertriebsmitarbeitern kann im Klassenzimmer (virtuell oder anderweitig) beginnen, aber das ist erst der Anfang der Lernreise. Für den Aufbau einer erfolgreichen Vertriebsorganisation gibt es noch viele andere Bereiche, die Sie berücksichtigen sollten.

sdr sales training courses
sdr sales training courses

Hier ist die kurze Antwort - Führen Sie ein 1-Tages-Verkaufs-Bootcamp durch

  • Sitzung 1 – Verkaufspsychologie. Entwickeln Sie die Denkweise, Ziele und Aktivitäten eines Verkaufssiegers. Entdecken Sie die Psychologie hinter jedem Verkauf und wie Sie diese zu Ihrem Vorteil nutzen können.
  • Sitzung 2 – Entdeckung und Qualifizierung. Um zu verkaufen, müssen Sie zur richtigen Zeit und mit der richtigen Botschaft vor den richtigen Leuten stehen. Wenn Sie dies richtig machen, wird der Verkauf viel einfacher.
  • Sitzung 3 – Den komplexen Verkauf meistern. Wie man verschiedene Entscheidungsträger mit unterschiedlichen und oft konkurrierenden Prioritäten identifiziert.
  • Sitzung 4 – Füllen Sie Ihren Verkaufstrichter. Entdecken Sie kurz- und langfristige Strategien, um neue Verkaufsanfragen zu generieren und gleichzeitig Ihre Produktivität zu maximieren. Diese Sitzung beinhaltet unseren Omnichannel-Ansatz zur Lead-Generierung und zeigt, wie Sie Telefon, Cold-E-Mail und LinkedIn in Kombination nutzen können, um Ihren Verkaufstrichter zu füllen.

Es besteht zwar kein Zweifel daran, dass ständiges Lernen nach der Philosophie “wenig und oft” für die Entwicklung des Vertriebs wichtig ist, aber Vertriebs-Bootcamps sind eine hervorragende Möglichkeit, den Lernprozess in Gang zu bringen.

SaaS Sales Training Bootcamps sind in der Regel 1- oder 2-tägige Vertriebskurse. Sie sind von Natur aus intensiv und liefern den SDRs eine große Menge an Informationen, auf die sie zurückgreifen können. Vertriebs-Bootcamps funktionieren am besten, wenn sie in Verbindung mit einer bestehenden Vertriebskampagne und einem laufenden Vertriebscoaching eingesetzt werden.

In den Bootcamps wird das Wissen geschult, und das Vertriebscoaching hilft den Sdrs bei der praktischen Anwendung des Wissens.

Neben der SDR-Schulung sind Bootcamps auch für Schulungsthemen beliebt, z. B. für die Schulung der Vertriebsgrundlagen, die für Personen gedacht ist, die völlig neu im Vertrieb sind und als Teil ihres Einführungsprozesses schnell viele Informationen benötigen.

SDR-Verkaufsschulung

Die Tätigkeit eines Vertriebsbeauftragten (SDR) ist eine anspruchsvolle und geschätzte Position in jedem Unternehmen. Es ist wichtig, dass sich Ihre SDRs ihrer Bedeutung für das Unternehmen bewusst sind und wissen, wie ihre Leistung zum Wachstum des Unternehmens beiträgt.

Leider neigen die meisten Vertreter der Vertriebsentwicklung dazu, nach einem Jahr zu gehen. Die meisten Geschäftsinhaber werden Ihnen sagen, dass die SDRs nicht für die Position geeignet waren oder dass ihre SDRs die Firma verlassen haben, um anderswo die Verkaufsleiter zu erklimmen.

Wir bei Klozers sind zwar der Meinung, dass dies teilweise zutreffen könnte, doch ist die Situation oft komplexer.

In der Regel verlassen die Mitarbeiter das Unternehmen, weil sie ihren Vertriebsleiter und das Unternehmen nicht mehr lieben. Ein Teil des Vertriebsmanagements besteht darin, die bestmögliche Schulung anzubieten und dann die vorhandenen Vertriebsfähigkeiten weiter auszubauen, damit die SDRs ihre Ziele regelmäßig erreichen können.

Zu einem modernen Vertriebsmanagement gehört die berufliche Entwicklung in Verbindung mit einer Laufbahn, selbst wenn dies bedeutet, dass der Vertriebsmitarbeiter das Unternehmen verlassen muss, um seine Vertriebskarriere zu entwickeln. Je mehr Sie in sie investieren, desto länger werden sie bleiben.

Kein Vertriebsprofi möchte seine Verkaufsziele verfehlen, niemand möchte in einem Unternehmen arbeiten, in dem Verkaufen wie das Waten durch Sirup ist. Menschen wollen gewinnen, sie wollen verkaufen, und ein großer Teil des Vertriebsmanagements besteht darin, Ihr Team erfolgreich zu machen.

Ein SDR-Training ist eine Voraussetzung dafür und hilft Ihrem Verkaufsteam, die Kaltakquise, das soziale Verkaufen, die Kommunikationsfähigkeiten und andere für Ihre Dienstleistung spezifische Verkaufsfähigkeiten zu verbessern.

Die Arbeit eines Vertriebsprofis ist nie zu Ende, es gibt immer neue Interessenten zu bedienen! Es ist nur sinnvoll, eine kontinuierliche Vertriebsschulung einzurichten, damit die SDRs über neue Vertriebstrends, Wettbewerber, neue Produktveröffentlichungen, neue Schulungsinstrumente usw. auf dem Laufenden bleiben.

Dies wird nicht nur die Effizienz Ihres Unternehmens verbessern, sondern auch die Mitarbeiterbindung und die Arbeitszufriedenheit erhöhen.

Der Schlüssel zu einem erfolgreichen SDR-Trainingskurs ist es, ihn einfach zu halten und klare Erwartungen an Ihr Vertriebsteam zu stellen, und was es von Ihnen erwarten kann. Dies bedeutet, dass eine starke Kultur der Kommunikation und Zusammenarbeit innerhalb des Teams aufgebaut werden muss.

Wir möchten Sie ermutigen, zusätzlich zu den Vertriebsschulungen ein umfassendes Lernprogramm für Ihre Vertriebsteams zu entwickeln, das folgende Punkte umfasst

1. Unternehmen

Geschichte, Menschen

Vision und Werte des Vertriebs

2. Was wir verkaufen

Produkte und Dienstleistungen,

3. Welche Probleme wir lösen

Schmerzpunkte, Nutzenversprechen,

4. An wen wir verkaufen

Profil des idealen Kunden, Profil des perfekten potenziellen Kunden

5. Wie wir verkaufen

Verkaufsprozess

6. Verkaufskompetenzen

Eine Liste der 21 empfohlenen Vertriebskompetenzen finden Sie in unserem SaaS Sales Playbook, das Sie hier herunterladen können.

Themen der Verkaufsschulung

Die meisten SDR-Schulungspläne beinhalten Themen wie Zielsetzung, Schulung, Mentoring, Kultur, Ablehnung und Kundenpersönlichkeiten. Themen wie z.B. Customer Personas sind der Schlüssel zum dauerhaften Marketingerfolg.

Das Verständnis von Kunden-Personas hilft Ihren SDRs zu erfahren, was potenzielle Kunden dazu bewegt, Ihr Produkt oder Ihre Dienstleistung zu kaufen. Dies hilft Ihren SDRs auch, das Kundenprofil zu verstehen, das Ihr Unternehmen anzieht, und hilft Ihrem SDR-Team, die Wünsche des Interessenten an Ihr Unternehmen einzugrenzen.

Dies ist auch eine großartige Möglichkeit für Ihre Vertriebsmitarbeiter, ein natürliches und dennoch gezieltes Gespräch zu führen, sei es per Telefon, E-Mail oder persönlich.

Bei Klozers verwenden wir zwei verschiedene Modelle für Kunden-Personas. Das erste ist das ideale Kundenprofil oder ICP, das sich auf die Unternehmen bezieht, die unseren Kriterien entsprechen, und das zweite ist das Profil des perfekten Interessenten. Dieses Profil ist spezifisch für die verschiedenen Käufer innerhalb einer Organisation und die unterschiedlichen Schmerzpunkte, die sie haben können.

Ein wirklich wichtiges Thema, das Sie in Ihrer SDR-Schulung behandeln sollten, ist Ablehnung und Denkweise. Wir alle erleben tagtäglich Ablehnung. Warum ist es dann so entmutigend, wenn sie im Gespräch mit potenziellen Kunden auftritt?

Die meisten SDRs sind neu in dieser Funktion und wollen sich erst einmal beweisen. Die Akquise kann für sie entmutigend sein und sie schnell demotivieren. Wenn Sie im Verkauf nicht öfter Nein als Ja sagen, dann sprechen Sie nicht mit genügend Leuten. Das erste “Nein”, das ein SDR erhält, wird das erste von vielen sein.

Eine gute Möglichkeit, aus dieser Erfahrung zu lernen, wäre es, den Interessenten zu fragen, warum er abgelehnt hat. Überprüfen Sie die Verkaufsstrategie Ihres SDR und üben Sie das Zuhören und Antworten.

Wie Ihr Vertriebsmitarbeiter mit diesem Gespräch umgeht, ist der Schlüssel für sein Weiterkommen in der Vertriebswelt.

Profilvorlage für Interessenten
Perfekte Profilvorlage für Interessenten

Verkaufstrainingsübungen

Bevor ein Vertriebsmitarbeiter einen Anruf tätigt, sollte er immer bereit sein, die vier wichtigsten Fragen zu beantworten, die ein potenzieller Kunde während des Anrufs stellen könnte, wie z. B:

  • Warum kontaktiert der SDR den potenziellen Kunden?
  • Warum sollte der Interessent mit dem SDR sprechen?
  • Welche Informationen benötigt der SDR vom potenziellen Kunden?
  • Welche Fragen oder Zweifel könnte der Interessent haben?

Eine gute Möglichkeit für Ihr Vertriebsteam, sich auf diese Fragen vorzubereiten, sind Rollenspiele mit ihren Kollegen. Bitten Sie Ihre SDRs, sich in die Lage Ihres potenziellen Kunden zu versetzen.

Eine interessante Möglichkeit, das Team mit einzubeziehen, besteht darin, einen SDR als Anrufer zu wählen und die anderen SDRs in die Rolle des potenziellen neuen Interessenten zu versetzen.

Bitten Sie jeden SDR, der in die Rolle des potenziellen Kunden schlüpft, diese Fragen in einer Schnellfeuerrunde zu stellen. Bei dieser Übung muss Ihr SDR, der die Rolle des Anrufers spielt, bei der Beantwortung von Fragen schnell reagieren.

Eine weitere gute Übung wäre, jeden SDR in Ihrem Team zu bitten, einen kurzen Vortrag über sein Lieblingsthema vor dem Rest des Teams zu halten. Fordern Sie die anderen SDRs in Ihrem Team auf, sich Notizen darüber zu machen, wie viele Füllwörter der Sprecher verwendet, z. B. wie, ähm, äh, nun, also, okay usw.

Das Ziel dieser Übung ist es, dass der Sprecher so wenig Füllwörter wie möglich verwendet. Dies wird Ihren SDRs helfen, professioneller und selbstbewusster aufzutreten und ihr Nutzenversprechen an ihre potenziellen Kunden weiterzugeben.

Kostenlose SDR-Schulungskurse

Bei dem großen Angebot an kostenlosen Verkaufstrainings sind wir manchmal nicht für jeden die erste Wahl. Eine kurze Suche im Internet zeigt, dass es viele kostenlose SDR-Schulungen und -Materialien gibt, die alle online verfügbar sind.

Viele der kostenlos angebotenen Online-Kurse sind bereits aufgezeichnet und bieten keine Möglichkeit, Fragen zu stellen oder mit dem Verkaufstrainer zu interagieren. Das ist keine gute Lernumgebung.

Neben der Bedeutung des Live-Trainings wissen wir auch, dass jeder Mensch anders lernt. Deshalb ist es wichtig, 4 wichtige und einfache Schritte zu befolgen: Beständigkeit, Unterstützung, Übung und Progression.

1. Konsistenz

Stellen Sie sicher, dass die Schulungen für Ihr SDR-Team einheitlich sind. Indem Sie Schulungen für Ihr Team einplanen, zeigen Sie, dass Sie sich für Ihr Team engagieren, um es dabei zu unterstützen, die besten Vertriebsmitarbeiter zu werden, die es geben kann.

Es ist wichtig, dass Sie Ihren Trainingsplan einhalten, um Ihrem Team zu zeigen, dass Sie es und seine Entwicklung schätzen. Dies ist eine gute Möglichkeit, Ihre SDRs in Ihrem Unternehmen zu halten.

2. Unterstützung

Unterstützen Sie Ihr Team beim Lernen. Jeder Mensch lernt anders und in seinem eigenen Tempo. Durch die Erforschung verschiedener Lernmethoden wie Rollenspiele, Kaltakquise-Spiele und Live-Call-Feedback helfen Sie allen Vertriebsmitarbeitern in Ihrem Team. Dies ist eine gute Möglichkeit, jeden SDR in die Schulung einzubeziehen, indem verschiedene Beispiele durchgespielt werden.

3. Praxis

Wir bei Klozers glauben fest daran, dass Übung den Meister macht. Es ist wichtig, daran zu denken, dass die meisten SDRs wenig bis gar keine Erfahrung in der Vertriebsentwicklung haben. Eine gute Möglichkeit, Ihr SDR-Team in Gang zu bringen, könnte darin bestehen, ihm eine Aufgabe zu stellen.

Nehmen Sie zum Beispiel die Kaltakquisegespräche Ihres SDR auf und spielen Sie sie ab. Bitten Sie Ihr SDR-Team, 3 Dinge zu nennen, die sie ihrer Meinung nach hätten tun können, um dieses Gespräch zu verbessern. Ermutigen Sie Ihre SDRs, auf ihren Tonfall und die Sprache zu achten, die sie während des Gesprächs verwenden. Dies kann ihnen helfen zu verstehen, was sie erfolgreich tun und was sie verbessern können.

4. Fortschreiten

Fortschritt ist das, was alle SDRs erreichen wollen. Dies ist ein Grund, warum viele Vertriebsmitarbeiter das Unternehmen verlassen, um eine andere Karriere zu verfolgen. Die Erstellung eines Schulungsplans, der die Entwicklung des SDR innerhalb des Unternehmens berücksichtigt, ist eine gute Möglichkeit, ihn auf Kurs zu halten und zu verstehen, welchen Wert er für Ihr Unternehmen hat.

Alle Vertriebsmitarbeiter im Innendienst wollen sich beweisen und zeigen, dass sie die anstehende Aufgabe bewältigen können, aber stellen Sie sicher, dass Sie Ihre SDRs nicht rennen lassen, bevor sie gehen können!

Ein einfacher Tipp wäre, 1:1-Sitzungen mit dem Vertriebsleiter einzuplanen, um ihre Fortschritte und ihre Vertriebspipeline zu besprechen, Feedback zu geben und gemeinsam einen Entwicklungsplan für jeden SDR auszuarbeiten.

Rollenspiel zum Verkaufstraining für Fortgeschrittene

Coaching Sales Behaviours | Bringing out the Best

Coaching Sales Behaviours

Coaching Sales Behaviours – Top question from Google

How do you coach a sales person?

Unfortunately like sales there is no one way to coach a sales person that works every time. After all sales people are all individuals and therefore different so what works with one, may not work with the next.

With that said there are many commonalities and examples of best practice that will get you started on the path to success.

  1. Mindset. Success in sales like many other areas in life is hugely dependant on mindset. Confidence, self belief, imposter syndrome, phone fear and self sabotage are all to common in sales people. With the right support these problems can be overcome, however, there is one area of mindset that many ignore – hunger. The best sales people are all hungry. Hungry to learn, hungry to help others and hungry for their own success. Whilst Vision Boards and Goal setting undoubtedly have a positive impact if the sales person you are coaching is not hungry for their own success you have a major problem. Many sales people ended up in sales by accident and many sales people are simply stuck in their current role and find it easier to stay than move on. Research from the Objective Management Group shows that between Sales Management & HR, 77% of sales hires are the wrong people. You can teach strategy, you can teach skills, but you can’t teach hunger.
  1. Planning. Many companies and sales managers lack the time to implement personal development plans to their sales teams. Coaching often then becomes ad hoc, unstructured which in turn is reflected in the outcomes. In order for sales coaching to be successful and deliver an ROI, some simple planning needs to take place. In our experience it’s always best to work backwards from the objectives and tasks that the business need to happen. From there managers should document the skills required to successfully complete the tasks, followed by a GAP analysis, highlighting where the sales people are now, versus where they need to be. Lastly, this should all be documented and progress tracked to show the benefit for both the business and the coachee.
  1. Focus. When coaching sales people it’s important to find a balance between what should be done and what can be done. Rather than giving sales people 3-4 different objectives after the coaching, we have always found it best to only give the coachee one objective to complete before the next session. This allows the sales rep to focus on one skill and perfect it before moving on to the next. A laundry list of objectives is rarely completed to any level of competency that the business would desire.
  1. Data. It’s important for sales coaching to be both objective and fair in order for it to be successful. Where possible we therefore always advocate a data led approach. Data demonstrating the success and best practice of others is difficult for sales reps to deny. This in turn leads to the importance of CRM in any sales organisation, as this is where the majority of data resides.
  1. Coaches. For obvious reasons coaching is different to management, so a sales coach cannot force a sales rep to do anything in terms of the outcomes of each session. Conversely, if Sales Managers are doing the coaching then they can instruct the sales people to do things, however, if the manager has to “tell” the coachee what to do, then there is typically a problem with the mindset and any success will be limited.
Sales Motivation

At Klozers our Sales Performance coaching uses Sales Scorecards, which ensure accountability for the students. This is first used to identify a baseline, which is used to kick start and structure the sales coaching. To be effective, sales coaching should look at sales in a holistic manner. This will include addressing the all the key components of sales success, which are Mindset, Sales Craft, Activity and Development.

All successful sales people have the right mindset for success. Throughout a sales career, it is impossible to achieve success on every call or presentation. As such, salespeople need to be resilient and bounce back from rejection. Controlling our mind is a hugely important part of a successful career in sales.

We can use simple Vision Boards to identify personal and business goals. Once these have been identified it’s important to draw a correlation between the two which helps ensure sales people are focussed on the goals of the business not just their own.

Craft covers the key sales skills and competencies required to be a successful sales professional. Most modern sales roles require a huge variety of sales skills, some of which are forever changing given the fast paced nature of sales and marketing.

Activity covers the important aspects of preparation, goals, sales planning and sales actions. Development covers an ongoing commitment to improving sales learning. Reflecting on past performance is an important aspect of this section. At regular intervals it is important that salespeople reflect on their performance and use this to adapt their techniques or seek additional coaching or training.

Often when reflecting, salespeople and most sales managers tend to focus on the negative aspects of performance (e.g. the bits that didn’t quite work), but it is equally as important to reflect on the positives. If a certain sales pitch has been successful, then salespeople should reflect on what went well, and how that can be implemented in other sales pitches.

Sales coaching can be conducted online or in person, in a group setting or on a 1-2-1 basis. Regardless of the delivery method, the same coaching models are used.

Coaching Sales Behaviours
Coaching Sales Behaviours

How do you coach an underperforming sales person?

Sales coaching can motivate and enthuse an underperforming sales professional or team more widely. People are hard wired to resist change, and as such sales coaches need to be mindful of this and adapt their coaching methods to suit.

With that said, if you have an underperforming sales person you should follow this process (dependant on the HR laws in your country of residence).

  1. Via a one to one meeting have an open and honest conversation with the sales rep around why the business thinks they are underperforming and what will happen if it continues. In most cases this does not necessarily mean they will lose their job. It could mean they have to retake initial training or have additional coaching. Every situation will vary but it’s important to have this conversation.
  1. Work with the sales rep to understand the root cause of the problem and once you have done this work with them to develop an action plan that will help them overcome their current performance gap. It’s important to include the sales rep in the planning to get their buy in. The plan should detail the responsibilities of the sales rep and the level of performance required.
  1. Lastly, the company and the sales manager should do all they possibly can to help and support the sales rep throughout the coaching period. This includes reviewing their own management and leadership style.

In some cases the sales rep may have already mentally checked out as no one wants to stay in a role that they are not performing in. In some cases, however, it is possible to turn results around and it’s always worth the investment in time and training given how much it costs to replace a sales person.

What is the key to coaching a successful sales team?

The key to coaching a successful sales team is ensuring that there is a culture of learning and growing throughout the team. In order to feed that culture you will require a continuous programme of training and coaching in place. There is no quick fix to achieving the best results.

As identified earlier, one-off sales training courses may have a short-term impact, but after only 30 days its success will ware off. As such, a continuous programme of professional development needs to be in place.

Employees want to feel valued by their employers, and now expect employers to contribute towards their professional development.

Without this in place, there is a concern that your best salespeople will look for other jobs. Recruiting new staff is a resource heavy and expensive process, and you still may end up with the wrong sales staff.

Hiring the wrong sales staff can have direct (lost sales) and indirect (damage to your brand) consequences for your company, so retaining the best staff is vital.

Sales coaching techniques

Sales coaches can use a range of techniques, and some coaches prefer certain techniques more than others. Whichever technique is used, sales coaching should be driven by data and be as factual as possible.

To be effective sales coaching should question the students, and a mixture of directive, non directive and collaborative style questioning can be used.

After sales coaching has been conducted it is important to measure the effectiveness of the coaching to see if it has delivered a suitable ROI.

If the sales coaching isn’t providing to be effective, then amendments will need to be made to it, either in the form of its content, delivery or programme.

Sales coaching models

There is a wide range of sales coaching models available, however, at Klozers we use either the PEDAL model which is Directive Coaching or the GROW model. The easiest way to explain the differences are:

PEDAL – Directive in style. Solving someone’s problem for them.

GROW – Non Directive in style. Helping someone solve their own problem.

In the PEDAL model the process is:

P = Position. The coach positions the reasoning/need for a new sales skill or sales process.

E = Explain. The coach explains how the new skills work.

D = Demonstrates. The coach demonstrates how to execute the new sales skills.

A = Assess. The sales professional practices the new skill and the coach assesses their competency and provides feedback.

L = Links. The coach then links the new skill to the sales reps role and key objectives.

The PEDAL coaching model is commonplace in areas where the correct execution of a skill is paramount and no choice is allowed. For example, when sales professionals need to comply with regulatory procedures, or when sales people need to follow a prove sales process.

But what does the GROW model involve?

GROW stands for:

G = Goal. What are the salespersons goals for the session?

R = Reality. What is the current reality?

O = Obstacles. What obstacles are holding the salesperson or team back?

W = Way. What way and actions do you commit to taking to move forward?

Grow Sales Coaching Model
Grow Sales Coaching Modell

Sales Performance Coaching

Selecting the right sales coach is an important step towards improving the sales performance in your team. Quota carrying sales managers can often be swamped by their own workloads, leaving them with little time to fully dedicate towards coaching sales behaviours.

In these circumstances, to avoid missed opportunities and good staff leaving, external sales coaching could be the answer. Our expert coaches at Klozers can help you with all of your sales coaching and training needs.

How to Build an Outbound Sales Team

How to Build an Outbound Sales Team

How to Build an Outbound Sales Team – Top question from Google

What is outbound sales?

Outbound sales is the process of a sales team or salespeople initiating engagement with potential and existing customers. This could encapsulate trying to secure new customers, up selling to existing customers, or general account management. In contrast, inbound sales relies on a company’s marketing strategy to drive customer interest, and customers will contact the company to enquire about their services. This blog post will tell you how to build an outbound sales team.

Preparing to go Outbound

In the rush to go outbound many companies either overlook or pay little attention to the core foundation of every successful outbound sales campaign – their value proposition. Without this most campaigns will fail at best, at worst, they will fail you will lose market traction. you will lose your best sales people and you will also lose a lot of money.

A Proven Value Proposition

Many companies make the mistake of trying to scale their sales operations without a proven value proposition with disastrous effects.  Whether you chose to build your own outbound team or to subcontract to a specialist you need a proven value proposition.  The more time and money you invest on proving your value proposition will be returned ten fold in your results.  This does not just apply to Startups.  Those that believe they have already proven their value proposition can equally benefit by refining and fine tuning what they have. 

Words Sell

Whilst most of us would accept the importance of words in the world of Business to consumer few people in B2B dedicate sufficient time and energy to finding the right words to describe our products and services.  Ask and Pay per click specialist who is restricted to 30 characters for the headline and 90 for the description of the importance of word choice.  That’s characters not words.

Technology

We are blessed in the modern sales world with lots of great outbound technologies which makes the outbound process both easier and more productive. From intent data, to auto diallers, to call recording and artificial intelligence there are a plethora of great tools to choose from that will help your outbound team be successful. Be sure to invest the time and budget to arm your sales team with the technology they need.

Sales Leadership

An often overlooked area of business is sales management. Many sales managers have come from a sales background and were at some stage a top sales rep. Unfortunately the skills required for modern sales management are very different to just selling and the position of sales manager is a key hire for any business. Without a great sales manager your best sales reps will leave and the worst reps will stay which is the exact opposite of what you want to happen. Company culture is hugely important in any business and no more so than in an inbound and outbound sales team.

In short, without a proven value proposition and good sales management, you will spend more money and take much longer to get where you want to go. These three areas are an essential component for a scalable outbound process.

Consultative Sales Training
Outbound Sales Strategies

Building an Inhouse Team or Outsourcing

When developing an outbound sales team, sales managers and company owners have two choices. They can build an in-house sales team or they can outsource the process to an external agency or group of salespeople.

Each option has its own positives and negatives, and sales managers and company owners should consider these carefully before making any changes.

Through outsourcing their outbound sales operations, companies can hire people with a proven track record of success that they might not otherwise be able to afford.

Outsourcing can be more economic for some companies, as they do not have to resource staff training or office space for them. It can also provide more cost flexibility, as the salespeople will not be tied down to long-scale contracts.

In-house sales teams are much more likely to develop excellent product knowledge over time, which they can convey to prospective clients. Outsourcing can also result in a lack of control of the sales process, and the company cannot guarantee that the leads generated are of a sufficient quality until much later.

There are also concerns that an outbound sales team may not be as “bought into” your product, company or company ethos, and this could be purveyed to prospective clients.

Remember, a poor outbound experience is the fastest way to destroy your brand. Badly executed outbound calls will have a negative impact on your brand and could lose you valuable market traction.

Outbound prospecting particularly cold calling, is very different to responding to inbound sales leads. Your sales team and lead generation strategy should be built with this in mind.

web based sales training
Outbound Sales Strategies

What are outbound sales activities?

Outbound sales requires salespeople to go to the potential clients. In contrast, inbound sales where potential clients come to the company, either for more information or to buy their product/service.

Therefore, traditionally outbound sales does not include any marketing or product development tasks.

Outbound selling can be very labour intensive, and in the case of cold calling it needs a high volume of calls to have a meaningful impact on sales. This is because:

80% of cold calls go straight to voice mail – Sales Intel

It takes an average of 18 attempts to reach a technology buyer – Gartner

In addition to being labour intensive, outbound sales has a high churn rate in terms of staff. Many companies struggle to retain the people they have, let alone build a high performing team of SDR’s.

Lead generation is the starting point of an outbound sales process. Some company’s will have a dedicated in-house lead generation team, whilst others leave it for their general salespeople to handle.

In most cases when outbound sales is left to general salespeople it simply doesn’t happen. Sales people have a skill of always finding something “more important” to do than lead generation.

Outbound sales is a contact sport, pure and simple and requires salespeople to contact prospective customers. This could be by telephone, email, LinkedIn or face to face, however predominantly this is done via phone and email.

From our own experience SDR’s who use a multichannel approach are much more successful than those who are only using the telephone or email.

Often as part of the outbound sales role SDR’s will undertake what is known as sales qualification process. This involves a salesperson determining whether or not the lead is likely to become a customer or not.

Once the leads have been qualified, leads are typically then passed to a Business Development Rep whose responsible for any form of product demo and closing the deal.

In more traditional sales organisations this may include setting appointments for the companies field sales reps. The length of the sales process will depend on the target market, the industry and the customer.

As an outbound sales person you will be expected to do the following:

  • Research leads
  • Generate new sales leads
  • Qualifying inbound sales leads and build a sales pipeline
  • Setting appointments with potential or existing customers and follow the sales process
  • Follow up proposals
  • Cold and warm calling
  • Cold and warm emails
  • Social Selling
  • Customer service calls, with a view to upselling
  • Product demos
  • Account Management

Outbound prospecting is especially vital for companies with little or no marketing budget. This is this because in these circumstances, prospective customers are unlikely to come to the company in great numbers, and as such the company will have to go to the potential clients.

Outbound sales strategy

Having a great team of outbound sales reps important, but if they don’t have a good sales strategy to follow, they are unlikely to be successful. Creating a sales strategy should be one of your first tasks when establishing an outbound sales team.

A good outbound sales strategy requires the right sales playbook (script, methods etc.) and the right methods to measure success. Opinions on sales scripts vary, but if you develop a good sales script, it ensures a consistent approach and can help new sales reps get up to speed faster.

Our research here at Klozers, find that sales teams with playbooks are 33% more likely to be high performers. If a sales script is used, preparation should be used so the salesperson will appear to be talking as naturally as possible.

Different sales methods should be explored to see if they will result in more successful sales. For example, consultative selling could result in an increase in sales.

Preparation is key for a successful outbound sales strategy. Salespeople should have all of the data, scripts and tools they need before they start calling. They should also have an excellent knowledge of the products or services.

Whatever sales strategy is used, it is important that there are processes in place to monitor its success. If certain aspects of the strategy haven’t been successful, then either the sales strategy can be amended, or extra training and coaching should be organised.

Data can be used to monitor the most successful times to make outbound sales calls. For example, if the data shows that outbound calls are more successful on a Wednesday afternoon, then greater focus should be placed on this time, and team meetings should be avoided at that time.

Outbound and Inbound Sales Support

At Klozers the inbound and outbound sales process that we teach in our sales training is based on the success we have had in our own business. We will show you exactly the sales strategies and outbound methods that we use every day to target customers, qualifying leads, make a sales call, cold calling, cold emailing and drive customer engagement.

Furthermore, if you would like to optimise your inbound and outbound channels we can teach you how we use content marketing combined with search engine optimisation, to turn our website in to a lead generation machine.

We have a number of ways we support SaaS companies. From advice on recruitment and value proposition development, through to telesales, social selling training and strategy training, we can help you win more business, grow your business. and have more fun along the way.

Klozers has been selected among the Top Lead Generation Companies by Designrush

Consultative Sales Training | How Customers Want to Buy

consultative sales training course

Consultative Sales Training – Top question from Google

What is a Consultative Sales Approach?

Consultative selling is very different to more traditional forms of selling, as it doesn’t actually focus on selling. Instead, it focuses on building relationships with customers, listening to their problems and only then, offering them solutions to their problems.

Asking open-ended questions and active listening are key components of any consultative sales approach. This approach works because potential buyers are more motivated to buy products or services that meet their own needs, rather than the needs of the sales professional.

A consultative sales approach truly puts the buyer first. Instead of just selling any old product, or what happens to be on promotion that month, sales professionals using the consultative sales approach will look to sell products and services that match the exact needs of their buyers, which makes for more productive business development results and satisfied customers.

Instead of a scripted sales pitch, sales teams can use conversational skills and listen to their buyers personal and business needs. Only then do they provide advice and guidance, which includes being adaptable to the different challenges buyers may face.

The consultative sales approach is highly effective and can lead to far greater results for your business and better long term customer relations. Using other sales techniques typically results in salespeople chasing leads that are not a good match for the buyer. Whilst they may well win a first order, if the product isn’t right for the buyer and their customers, it is unlikely that they will build long term relationships.

However, using the consultative approach, the sales rep needs to listen to the customer needs and provide meaningful solutions, meaning your new customer can come back time and time again for your product or services.

It has become increasingly popular in recent years as sales reps and sales managers managers have realised that traditional sales techniques have become less effective, because buyers have become wary of sales pitches. Instead of being sold a product, people prefer their salespeople to take a genuine interest in them as a person and their business.

The key components of a consultative sales approach is as follows:

  • Direct route to market
  • Low volume of sales but high profit margins – less popular but still relevant with transactional sales
  • Requires high level of industry knowledge with experienced sales people
  • Higher cost to employers, with lots of training required
  • Medium to long length sales cycles

Consultative selling requires a change in mindset. Instead of going out to sell, salespeople will need to go and have a conversation with potential buyers, in a structured and reputable manner. Building trust first with any potential buyer is a big aspect of consultative selling.

Initially a lot of sales people struggle to adapt to the consultative sales method, as they are almost hard wired to sell products and services via the traditional features and benefits method. However, if you choose to adapt a consultative sales approach, it is important to stick with it, as modern buyers have become more resistant to being sold products.

Steps involved in Consultative Selling

1. Research potential buyers thoroughly before contacting them

Before engaging with potential buyers, it is important that the salesperson researches the potential customer, thoroughly and effectively. If the salesperson is used to a more traditional fast-paced sales environment, taking the time at the onset of the sales process to research may seem like an alien process.

However, first impressions matter, and considering the consultative selling method prides itself on expert knowledge, you need to make sure that you have done enough research. Similarly, consultative selling involves asking probing questions, and without enough research it can be difficult or almost impossible for salespeople to ask probing questions.

2. Define the Symptoms – What are the symptoms of the problem the potential customer is facing?

During this first step the salesperson will try to get an understanding of the issue at hand. Here the salesperson will play a role of expert consultant, where their expertise of the industry can be used to discuss the issues.

It is likely that the buyer may only have a surface-level knowledge of the symptoms, therefore the expertise of a consultative salesperson is vital.

At this stage, it is vitally important that the salesperson doesn’t revert to a more traditional techniques and try to sell products or services. This is because, it is very early in the process, and it is unlikely that the salesperson will have formed a fully rounded understanding of the issues at hand, and could recommend the wrong solution.

3. Root cause analysis – ask the buyer questions to understand and diagnose the underlying causes.

During this stage, the salesperson will need to dig deeper into the problem, and find out what is causing it.

By digging deeper into the problem, the salesperson can use their knowledge to generate powerful questions that will reassure the buyer that they are dealing with an expert in the field, and that they can use their expertise to offer solutions to their problem.

This step can be a really powerful tool to build the buyers confidence in the salesperson.

4. Business impact – Ask how the issue is impacting on the business. Does it impact on morale, performance, profitability or all three?

At this stage, the salesperson and the buyer have agreed on a diagnosis of the issue, and they will now begin to understand how this impacts on the business.

If the issue has very little impact on the business, in terms of profitability or revenue, then it is very unlikely that the buyer will look to make a significant contribution (either financially or with their time) to finding a solution.

If this is the case, or if the salesperson knows that their product or service isn’t the solution to the buyers problems, then the salesperson should cut their losses here.

5. Financial Impact – Find out how much the problem will cost the business if they do not fix it.

Identifying the financial impact of the issue is another major milestone in the consultative sales method. This can be easier to measure in objective measurements, such as monetary values, rather than subjective measurements such as staff morale or culture, which are far more difficult to monitor.

If the financial impact runs into the hundreds of thousands of pounds each year, and the solution only costs £10,000 then this could be a very attractive proposal for the buyer. Alternatively, if the solution costs £100,000, and it would only save the company £10,000 each year, it will be a much less attractive proposition to the buyer.

6. Personal Impact – Find out how the problem affects the buyer personally – how does it affect their day to day job?

Potential buyers are far more likely to be convinced by a solution, if the issue directly impacts upon them. This is why when using the consultative selling skills, it is vitally important to make sure that you are speaking to the right person.

If the salesperson and buyer are involved in a complex sales solution, it is likely that the 6 step process above may need to be repeated. It may also need to be repeated with different departments and stakeholders. Whilst this inevitably adds to the time taken to sell a product or service, patience is an important aspect of consultative sales.

consultative selling skills
Consultative Selling Approach

What do you need to be a good consultative salesperson?

Consultative selling requires some key selling skills which aren’t necessarily associated with more traditional selling methods. This includes:

  • Active Listening – traditionally salespeople aren’t renowned for their listening skills, but under the consultative selling method, using active listening is a key requirement. Not only does it help understand the buyers issues, it also helps you stand out from the crowd. As buyers are being turned off by hard sales pitches, if a buyer needs to choose between two similar products, they may choose for the one with the sales person that genuinely listened to their issues.
  • Emotional intelligence – This covers peoples ability to evaluate, perceive and control emotions. Buying and selling remains an emotional process, and it is important for salespeople to respond to the buyers emotions.
  • Expertise – Because consultative selling requires the salesperson to really delve deep into issues, it is important that sellers are experts in their field. However, no one wants to be overawed with information, so the salesperson will need to communicate their expertise efficiently.
  • Domain knowledge – Similar to expertise, salespeople will need to have a specialised knowledge of the whole domain. Not only do salespeople need to know what their customers want, they need to know what their customers’ customer want.
  • Self-awareness – Consultative salespeople will need to understand and manage our thoughts and the impact that can have on people.
Consultative Sales Training
Consultative Selling Approach

What questions to ask?

Asking the right questions is probably the most important part of consultative selling. Asking aimless questions or having an unstructured conversation with a potential buyer, is unlikely to either build rapport or project confidence. Whilst consultative selling doesn’t involve hard selling, salespeople can still funnel a conversation one way by using structured and well designed questions. Using specialised questioning techniques when combined with active listening and the required expertise can be a winning combination.

There are several types of consultative selling questions. They are:

  • Open ended questions – These are used to gather further information
  • Closed questions – Should be used for confirmation
  • Summary questions – Sales professionals should will summarise or paraphrase the prospective buyers statement and turn it into a question. These are used to confirm the correct understanding of issues.
  • Funnelling questions – These channel the conversation through a particular area.
  • Redirect questions – Sales Professionals should use these questions to control the conversation and move the sales process forward.
  • Opposing redirect – These questions is answering a question with a question back to the buyer.
  • Presumptive questions – Presumptive questions are questions when the salesperson knows or presume the prospective buyer does not know the answer.

Which Products and Services are best suited to Consultative Sales Techniques?

The great thing about Consultative sales techniques are that they can be used in almost any industry, or with any product or service. Our own clients sell a wide range of services from Waste Management through to Aircraft Manufacturing each using a consultative sales approach.

Furthermore, once you have mastered the system it can be as flexible as possible. We have clients using a consultative sales approach and closing deals on one inbound sales call, and we also have clients using the exact same consultative approach to close large enterprise deals through a six month sales cycle.

What is Consultative Sales Training?

Consultative selling requires a change in mindset and as such effective training is vitally important. As a specialist sales provider we offer training in consultative sales, and a range of courses from giving people a solid baseline understanding of the method through to those seeking to master the sales techniques.

As an international training provider we believe that sales teams learn better if they are doing the task, rather than reading text books or watching a presentation, and as such part of our training includes role place sessions. Consultative sales training also cover all aspects of the sales process, including social selling techniques.

It is also important to remember that consultative selling requires ongoing reinforcement training, so you should consider booking in several sessions, to ensure that your sales team do not revert to their natural selling habits.

Outside of training, under any sales technique it is important that sales professionals have enough support and encouragement. This is even more important under the consultative selling technique. Sales coaching from a sales manager between training sessions, can be a vitally important resource.

You can check out our course on consultative sales and book online here.

Coaching for Sales Leaders – how coaching drives growth

Coaching for Sales Leaders

How do you coach a Sales Manager? – Top question from Google

How do you coach a Sales Manager? – the short answer

To coach a sales manager, you must have an agreed sales strategy and a sales plan with KPI’s.  The role of the manager is to execute the plan in line with the KPI’s, which is where they may need sales coaching.

Coaching Sales Leaders – here’s a more detailed look at what you can do to support your sales leaders.

Many sales managers have been promoted based on their sales skills and performance.  Whilst these are valuable, the role of a sales manager is very different and thus requires different skills.  The simplest example is coaching itself.  Most salespeople have never coached another sales rep and the whole process is often new to them.

1. What are the business benefits of sales coaching?

The benefits of sales coaching are an important part of building a business case for your coaching programme, no matter how big or small.  Whilst every business is different, we would suggest you take a data led approach to evaluate the “size of the prize” – the potential revenue benefits.

Let’s pretend that our top sales rep generates £500K in revenue per annum in an average year. In bigger teams of 10 plus sales people you should take the average of the top 3.  There is no rule to follow here other than it must be truthful.

Next, take the average revenue figure that your B players – the middle sixty percent of your team generate per annum and as an example lets assume as a group they average £400k per annum.

The potential opportunity from sales training and coaching is therefore £100k per sales rep.  In most cases the size of the opportunity is circa 10 x the cost of the training and coaching. 

We encourage every client to work these figures out for themselves.  Once everyone has agreed these figures then the business can work with the Sales Manager to create a coaching plan and set some KPIs. 

Sales Coaching Choose Coach
Coaching for Sales Leaders

2. How do you coach effectively in sales?

Effective coaching starts before the coaching itself. As a business we believe that coaching is not for everyone, as not everyone is coachable.  This can be for a number of reasons, however, in our experience there are two main reasons as follows:

  • People are not motivated to learn and improve themselves
  • People do not believe that they need to learn and improve themselves

Your business will be no different – some people will be interested and respond to training and coaching and some people will only attend because they are told to.  From our experience, Sales Leader have to make difficult choices and whilst there is no one size fits all we recommend the following:

Segment your sales team by current performance.

A Group – the top 20% of your sales team that mostly hit target.

B Group – the middle 60% that miss targets but are motivated to improve, want to learn and will respond to coaching and training.

C Group – the bottom 20% of people who never hot their sales target and whilst they may need training and coaching they have no interest in it and won’t respond.

Next, work with the A players to develop a coaching plan based on what they do that makes then A players.  Where possible use the A players to co deliver some of the training and coaching to the B players. 

The most important part here is to make sure that you hold the B players accountable to what has been agreed and taught. 

This just leaves the C-Group.  The easiest thing that any sales leader can do is ignore under performance.  Some people end up in sales by accident and they are simply a round peg in a square hole.  They may not admit it but these C players are unhappy, as no sales rep likes to be unsuccessful.  The most difficult task of any sales leader is to let someone go, even under performers but that’s why they are a leader, that’s what drives success. 

As a Sales Leader when you retain underperforming sales reps you are subconsciously self-sabotaging your own sales team.  You’re a – player salespeople will look around your office and say to themselves “why should I work hard, why should I go the extra mile, when Jonny is still here and never hits a sales target?”.  Before you know it they will have resigned and you are left trying to hire there replacement.

The best salespeople want to work with others at the top of their game, they want to train and get better, that’s what makes them the best.

So if you want your coaching to be effective you must first find people who want to be coached.

3. What is the key to coaching a successful sales team?

There are many key components to coaching a successful sales team and from our experience we would suggest:

  • The best coaching is based on data because data is difficult to argue with
  • Coaching needs to be regular and consistent to for the business and individual to benefit
  • You should follow a coaching process such as the GROW Coaching model
  • Coaching should be a KPI for both the coach and the coachee
  • Coaching should be based around established best practice and not theory
  • Each coaching session should be documented so you can demonstrate progress
  • Each coaching session should have an agreed list of actions as an outcome that are revisited.
  • Coaching sessions are not opportunities to critique salespeople or performance.  They need to be positive and supportive.
  • Coaching should focus on the lead indicators of success not the lag indicators.
What Makes a Great Sales Manager
Coaching for Sales Leaders

4. What does good sales coaching look like?

In our experience, the best starting point for good sales coaching is capturing and documenting what best practice in sales within the organisation currently looks like.  Once documented this provides a baseline that no one can deny is achievable. 

By best practice in sales, we mean the entire sales process from opportunity creation through to post sale whereby the customer is completely satisfied and happy to provide referrals. 

In most cases lead generation is the biggest obstacle for salespeople, so demonstrating via real life examples of where a new enquiry converted to a sales and a subsequent referral to another client  helps break down the “this won’t work mentality”.

Once you have identified this best practice, it’s important to map out the sales activities at each stage of the sales process.  Again, in most cases the biggest problems are typically found at the start of the sales process when your team are trying to generate new sales leads.

Next up, document the type and number of activities that the top sales performer within the organisation does in an average week.  This then becomes the baseline for sales activity.   Be sure to document the lead indicators or KPI’s and not the lag indicators. 

For example sales revenue is a lag indicator and if we use this as a KPI in an organisation with a 6 months sales cycle then it will be six months before we know if we have been successful.  Look for the lead indicators – the sales behaviours that lead to the revenue.

Now the sales coaching process can start. For example, if the average sales activity of the top performer is 50 dials a day, 5 discovery calls and 2 presentations from which they close one deal, then the role of the sales coach is to bring every other member of your sale team up to this level.

5. What challenges do you face when coaching salespeople?

The majority of challenges when sales managers are coaching salespeople revolves around two main areas:

  • Sales activity or behaviours – we call this Productivity.  These are the actual sales behaviours required to generate new leads, close deals etc.  The majority of these sales behaviours have no immediate impact or reward, and in a society that is heavily influenced by the instant gratification of likes and shares, many salespeople struggle with the discipline of constantly prospecting when the reward can be months down the line.
  • Skills & Knowledge – we call this Performance.  Whilst productivity coaching is focussed around getting more done, performance coaching is about increasing conversion.  Increasing the number of leads that convert to an opportunity and the number of opportunities that convert to deals can have a dramatic effect on profitability. 

Whilst these areas are important there is a much bigger challenge we often find when coaching and it is simply motivation.  The top performers are so self-motivated they find their own answers to the points above. 

Motivation or rather a lack of it can be caused by a multitude of things, however, unless the sales manager can find a way to help the sales team motivate themselves then they will struggle.

Motivation can come from within and it’s important to tie the business goals to the personal goals of the sales team.  Whilst goals are important, what’s more important is to find a “cause”. A cause is self-fuelling, it has an energy all of it’s own that drives people forward. 

How to motivate sales people without moneyv
Coaching for Sales Leaders

6. The Impact of Coaching on Sales Performance

Coaching impacts an individual in two different ways. The first is tangible and therefore quite easy to measure, however, the second is intangible and arguably more important, but difficult to measure.

What we mean by the tangible impact are mostly skills based activities such as questioning, telephone, discovery, presentation, negotiation skills and the plethara of other skills that the modern sales person requires to be successful.

There are a number of ways and different tools that can help you measure the impact of skills coaching. However, it’s worth first thinking of the journey that learners go on as they learn new skills.

As demonstrated by the Theory of Learning, learners move through four stages of learning before they reach peak performance.

a) Unconscious Incompetence – the learner is inept at the skill but unaware of this.

b) Conscious Incompetence – the learner is inept but is now aware of this.

c) Conscious Competence – the learner can perform the skill well but needs to think about it

d) Unconscious Incompetence – the learner can perform the skill without thinking about it.

The speed by which learners move through the four stages is dictated by the time invested in learning the new skill, the learning support available.

Unfortunately in sales, sometimes people need to fail first before they understand there might be a different approach that they could benefit from adopting. These people are not coachable and will always resist any form of intervention.

Next up is the intangible impact on the individual which as we said is much more difficult to assess. In sales one of the most important intangible benefits is confidence. Without confidence salespeople will simply never be successful.

It takes a certain level of confidence to prospect, to present, to negotiate etc, however in sales confidence is fragile, it gets shipped away with every unsuccessful call, every no from a prospect and every failed negotiation.

The biggest killer of confidence is often the empty sales pipeline. Once it’s empty is usually much harder to refill your sales funnel as your confidence becomes overwhelmed with desperation and you enter a vicious cycle of decline.

In addition to confidence, another important intangible impact from coaching comes in the form of Emotional Intelligence. In short Emotional Intelligence (EI) is the art of identifying and managing emotions both in ourselves and those around us.

Sales can be a rollercoaster of emotions and controlling these is never easy but also managing the emotions of the people around you is hugely important. At a presentation, a negotiation or a simple sales conversation the emotions of your prospect and how you respond can be the difference between winning the sale or not.

7. Talk to us

Klozers provide Exec Sales Coaching and Sales Performance Coaching services across four time zones. Our sweetspot is working with small and medium size businesses to help them take on the big brands within their industry and win.

Our team a have a wealth of experience and are happy to provide an initial consultation at no charge.

Sales Coaching – Why it’s more important than ever

Sales Coaching

There’s a new way to deliver sales growth…

Don’t buy Sales Training until you’ve watched this video

1. Sales Coaching - Why Invest in Coaching?

At Klozers we love sales coaching.  Watching people or a company who had previously struggled, suddenly find their feet and take off, is one of the main benefits of our job. 

However, as with anything in business, sales coaching must provide real value and a financial benefit to the business.  Unfortunately, many companies still do not invest in professional coaching for their salespeople and the most common reason for this is the cost. 

One could argue that if you can’t afford sales coaching then there is an even greater need for it.  Perhaps it’s easier for people to blame the cost, than for the coaching profession to admit they could do more to help justify the costs.

We were in that position ourselves until we changed the format of our own sales coaching in order to make it easier for our clients to measure the increases in their pipeline and the subsequent sales revenue that comes from this.  If you would like to learn more about this and how you can change your own sales coaching process then you can jump to the end here.

Additional resources on Sales Coaching

Coaching the best Sales Behaviours

Sales Coaching Online
GROW Sales Coaching
Executive Sales Coaching
Remote Sales Coaching and Training

Entrepreneurs and Start-Ups
High Performance Sales Coaching
Delivering Effective Sales Coaching
Sales Coaching Course

2. Sales Training vs Sales Coaching - what's the difference?

Many people get confused between what is sales training and what is sales coaching.  Not only is training and coaching different, they also have different outputs which are really important.

Whereby sales training is about the transfer of knowledge, Sales Coaching is about the practical implementation of that knowledge in the field.

The easiest way to think of this is if your company has technical people like engineers or software developers.  The training is what a developer would go through to learn how to write the code.

The coaching is what the developer would need to turn the code into a meaningful application for your business. This means that coaching is the part that drives productivity in the sales team.

One of the main benefits of coaching is that it reinforces the new skills and techniques learnt during the training.  Without coaching studies show that up to 98% of knowledge is lost within 30 days.

In other words, one off event-based training sessions have a very limited impact on sales productivity.

3. When to coach and when not to coach

A recent study by Sales Coaching is one of the most productive activities for any sales team, however, not every sales rep is coachable.  Some salespeople have a “superiority complex” and don’t believe they can either learn or improve. 

This can be falsely reinforced by hitting sales targets that are too low or by being the top sales performer in a group.  Other people will not responding to coaching as improving sales invariably means changing sales behaviours and every human being struggles to change their behaviours.

The last reason some salespeople do not respond to coaching is because they are simply stuck in their own comfort zone and without any really powerful reason to change then they simply carry on as before.

The irony is of course that in the majority of cases these people are in the most need of training and coaching.  With that said, unless there are exceptional circumstances you should not invest time or money in coaching people who have no desire to improve. 

You must either accept them as they are and the potential negative impact they will have on the wider group, or you must have one of those ”management” conversations with them.

Get started with our Sales Performance Coaching

4. Sales Coaching Models

There are many sales coaching models and frameworks that you can choose from.  The one we use both internally and externally is the GROW model which we find provides the simplicity and flexibility we require.  

It’s worth noting that coaching in sales can be very different to other forms of coaching.  For example, in Exec coaching, coaches are encouraged not to provide the answers and to focus on the questions. 

This forces the coachee to come up with the answer and the though process is that because its their idea they are more likely to believe it and then act on it. 

In sales when there are potentially millions of dollars in terms of deal values up for grabs and time is of the essence, the best sales coaches will switch from a consultative coaching process to directive coaching whereby they are training, coaching and advising the coachee what they need to do.

Grow Sales Coaching Model
GROW Sales Coaching Model

Opportunities for Coaching

There are many areas within sales that lend themselves to sales coaching.  The most common areas Managers should be focussing on for coaching we have found are around:

Sales Activity
Accountability
Lead Generation
Pipeline Coaching
Qualifying/disqualifying

Deal Coaching
Field Coaching
Pre-call planning
Post-call debriefing
Storytelling

5. Growing Sales Revenue

The more adept your employees become at selling, the more revenue they will generate for your business. We use the word employees because sales has changed and the most productive companies have people in every department that can sell to one degree or another. 

For example, many companies who have now aligned their sales and marketing now acknowledge that great salespeople can do marketing and great marketers can sell. 

Best in class companies have expanded this to their operations team who are now positioned as thought leaders and subject matter experts.  This helps build brand authority and helps to differentiate companies in the marketplace.

By investing in training based on the very latest strategies, techniques and market activity, you can gain a real edge over your competitors.

6. Virtual or Remote Sales Coaching

During the lockdowns of 2020 and 2021 many salespeople were forced to work from home. Homeworking was easier for some than others, however, many studies showed that people felt less connected and even unsettled when working from home. 

Many Field Salespeople who had spent their lives on out on the road where suddenly confined to their home and confronted with a completely new way of selling. These are exactly the sort of scenarios where coaching can help people adjust to new circumstances and maintain performance.

In many cases sales reps had to retrain on how to sell remotely using tools like MS Teams and Zoom.  Sales training and coaching can bring your remote team together and make it more than the sum of its parts.

The best sales trainers don’t just focus on boosting individual performance but foster a sense of teamwork and unity between your staff. To close big deals in the modern sales world takes a Team and not just one individual.  

If everyone is using a common sales language and are working together at the best of their abilities, you’re more likely to close bigger and better deals than ever before.

How to manage sales activity
Behavioural Sales Coaching

7. Increase Sales Productivity

Productivity can be difficult to measure in many roles, however, in sales there is a tangible figure every month that can be used as a good indicator. 

That’s not to say that your MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue) or other revenue goals are the only indicator of productivity, but it’s always the ultimate figure that sales reps are judged by. 

Whereby sales training is about the transfer of knowledge, Sales Coaching is about the practical implementation of that knowledge in the field.  This means that coaching is the part that drives productivity in the sales team. 

With studies showing that 83% of employees want to learn new skills sales training and coaching can make your team more productive and efficient. Quality sales coaching sessions can inspire your team and help them get out of a rut.

You may find that some of your employees feel that they know all there is to know about driving sales. However, the market is always changing, and what works one year isn’t always as effective 12 months later.

Some of your employees may have more sales potential than they think, and training and coaching can help them unlock this.

8. Closing Bigger and Better Deals

Many times human beings create their own glass ceilings and get stuck.  Salespeople are susceptible to this and often suffer from self limiting beliefs around deal sizes, sales behaviours and the whole sales process. 

Sales training can give your staff the skills they need to secure bigger, more lucrative deals, however without coaching they will quickly lose the new skills and revert back to type.

A good sales coach helps embed the new skills and strategies your sales reps learn in training and helps hold them accountable to using the new skills. As your team become more knowledgeable and confident, they’re more likely to close more deals and bigger ones. 

By using highly experienced sales coaches who live and breathe sales you are in effect fast tracking your team past all the typical problems they will encounter that slow down company growth.

Your team will learn about the latest best practices that they can follow whilst attempting to close deals. The more successful your sales reps become, the more their confidence will grow. Success breeds success.

9. Win More new Clients

Often the most difficult activity in sales is generating new business.  Sales prospecting, lead generation, whatever you call it in your business filling the top of your sales funnel is always a challenge in B2B sales.

The problem with prospecting is that nobody wants to do it, but it still needs to be done.  Many of the problems associated with sales prospecting are connected to the mindset of the sales reps. 

It’s easy to churn out 70 calls a day, and even when you achieve some success it’s difficult to get motivated to come back in day after day and make more calls. 

The job of the modern sales coach isn’t just to help improve your telephone skills, or the number of dials you make every day. A great sales coach will take a more strategic approach, and work with you on the bigger picture – revenue goals, sales coals, sales campaigns that dramatically increase your sales results.

This in turn helps to motivate and inspire your staff, and get them thinking more strategically about the sales process.   

The ROI on Exec Sales Coaching
Sales Coaching ROI

10. Coaching your Sales Team in a Structured Way

It’s common for companies to know exactly what kind of training their teams need. However, many companies are unclear about how the training should be structured.

Structure is important because it ensures that the training sticks and is embedded in the organisation. Without any form of structure you will find participants forget up to 98% of what they learn in training.

Experienced sales training providers and coaches can help you examine your current sales culture and build a training programme that’s specifically tailored to your organisations needs.

A sales training provider can carry out research such as a training needs analysis before training and coaching takes place. Any sales training and coaching should also be aligned with the companies sales strategy. 

For example, if there is a need from the business to reduce customer churn the training and coaching on this topic might be a priority. 

Training can also be built around new product launches and sales campaigns and wherever possible should be built around your current sales challenges.

11. Boost Workplace Morale

Great sales coaching can also boost confidence and improve morale amongst your staff. Research by LinkedIn shows that 91% of people agree that teams that learn new skills together are more successful.

Furthermore 90% of people surveyed believe that team learning helps foster a sense of belonging to the organisation.

Whilst not everyone will, the majority of your team members are likely to appreciate the effort you’ve put into training them, and helping them improve their knowledge and skills.

Investing in training shows your staff that you care about their career development and want them to achieve more. If staff feel valued, they are more likely to meet their goals and stay with the organisation longer.

Employee satisfaction can be worth its weight is key when it achieving customer satisfaction and meeting business targets. Training can also refresh their knowledge so they can follow and new best practices and anything they may have forgotten or become unclear about.

Coaching Sales Behaviours
High Performance Sales Coaching

12. Increase Decision Making

Many companies struggle to grow because there are bottlenecks in their internal decision-making process.  These bottlenecks occur when sales reps do not have the confidence or knowledge to make any form of decision. 

This makes companies less agile and slow to react to changes in the market.  Many companies are investing in sales training and coaching in order to improve the decision-making skills of their sales leadership team.

Effective sales coaching can help your team recognise and capitalise on opportunities to drive not only your business forward, but their professional development too.

Sales trainers act as a sounding board and can listen to your Teams ideas and help them fine-tune them to make them more effective in real-world situations.

Other benefits of sales coaching are that your team can become more creative and you will foster an environment where they feel more comfortable discussing new ideas.

13. Product and Service Training

Buyers have very little time to spend with sales reps and when they do they want to talk to salespeople who understand their industry, their business and their own products and services. 

For new sales reps this can be a huge challenge as they get up to speed on products and services. 

Buyers expect salespeople to know all the answers to their questions, and their products inside out. including all their features and benefits. While training supports features and benefits, coaching provides the all important bridge between them, and what relevance and value they provide to the customer.   

Sales coaches can help reps gain a deeper, richer understanding of the context and relevance of the  products that they’re selling.  This in turn allows them to emphasise their value when discussing them with customers.

A quality sales coach will encourage your team members to talk about the most important features of your solutions, so your prospects can clearly see how beneficial they are, resulting in more sales success for everyone. 

14. Coaching Sales Managers

Many companies overlook one of the most important elements of any successful sales coaching program, namely the sales manager. 

In most cases a sales manager also fulfils the role of the sales coach and as such has a huge influence on the success of the sales team. 

Coaching sales people will have limited results if the overall coaching program does not include the sales manager. 

Modern sales managers set the bar in terms of productivity and sales performance, so unless they are learning and improving, neither will their  team be.

Most sales managers have neither been trained in sales management, let alone as a sales coach.

Running an effective sales coaching programme is very different from being a great sales person or sales manager. 

15. Virtual Selling

The pandemic and subsequent lockdowns resulted in many traditional field sales reps being taken off the road and working from home. 

Despite most lockdowns having lifted the traditional field sales role has in some cases merged into a hybrid role and in other cases been removed completely. 

Virtual selling is here to stay and for most organisations this represented an immediate need for sales coaching and training to support reps in their changed environments. 

Sales Managers with no training as sales coaches where thrown into the limelight, and overnight were required to be the sales coach. 

In addition to their management duties, overnight they now had strategic coaching, tactical coaching, sales cycle coaching  team motivation, coaching sales calls, coaching underperforming sales reps, one on one meetings, group sessions to keep their team motivated, boost engagement maintain accountability and sales performance. 

All this whilst managing their own performance and continuing to meet the revenue and sales goals and overall sales success of the organisation.  Sales managers need support, they need professional development programs themselves if they are in turn expected to support other team members. 

Remote selling requires a different skill set and different coaching techniques in order to deliver results.  

16. In Conclusion

If you’re interested in providing structured and effective sales coaching program that’s specifically based on your needs, we would love to talk with you. Sales coaching can reverse any negative sales trends, make your team more adept at selling, improve your sales processes and increase morale within your workforce.

By getting your sales leaders on board and involved in the training and coaching process, you can increase the chances of the training being successful.

Sales coaching can also unite sales teams, help you close bigger, better and more lucrative deals, enhance your revenue, help you win new clients, and retain existing ones. Few companies regret their decision to invest in sales coaching.

Klozers has different sales coaching programs available for salespeople, sales managers and business leaders.  We have built our business on our ability to train and coach sales professionals across various industries and love what we do. 

12 Critical Objectives of Sales Management

Objectives of Sales Management

The Objectives of Sales Management

There are many objectives and goals for sales management and the importance of each will vary from business to business. 

Business to business sales can be complex, with many variables and whilst the obvious objectives of revenue, profitability and growth are important it’s easy to argue a case for the plethora of other objectives such as customer satisfaction, team morale, employee retention. 

Effective sales management is the key to running every successful sales team. When sales management is executed correctly, the rest of your enterprise benefits.

Sales managers are responsible for inspiring teams, leading by example, maximising profits and providing customers with the best experience to make sure they return for more.

We’ve resisted the urge to include the all to common piece around smart goals, because we assume your past all that and looking for something more meaningful. 

So, we’ve listed below what we believe to be the main objectives of sales management, enjoy.

1. Sales Plan

We’ve listed sales plan at the very start because of it’s importance.  Without a plan it’s difficult to track progress, meet or exceed your goals and align your sales team around those goals. 

Quite simply, the sales plan ensures that not only is everyone on your company boat rowing in the same direction, it ensures that the boat itself is going in the right direction.

As with any objective or goal, the sales manager should be measured on the execution of the sales plan. 

For some reason the majority of companies do not have a sales plan and miss out on the many benefits they bring.

2. Sales Strategy

Strategy is listed in the dictionary as “an approach” and although it sounds simple coming up with the best approach or strategy to how you gain maximum market penetration with the budget available to you is never easy. 

At best if you nail your sales strategy sales will take off and at worst you will find that sales become like wading through treacle.  An eternal hardship that consumes any profits you dreamed of as it sucks the life from your business.  

Once you’ve agreed on a strategy you need to review this on a monthly basis and adjust as required. 

Beware however, of changing your strategy before it has had a chance to mature or you might just end up going round in circles.  

Once you’ve decided on your sales strategy the next challenge is aligning all your resources including the sales team and executing on that strategy. 

How to manage sales activity

3. Reporting and Metrics

Before you start to implement and share your strategy and sales plan you will need to give some thought as to how you are going to measure your progress. 

Data is the new oil and Sales reporting is an essential part of the modern sales managers day to day activities. 

Your reporting system should  tell you everything from how well your reps are performing on a daily basis, to the cost of customer acquisition on your latest sales campaign.

Reports will tell you which areas you are succeeding in and areas need your attention. You should draw up a list of baseline sales metrics and then from there you can measure progress towards your targets.

In almost every scenario, you will be asked to generate Management Reports for your board and these will include things like your current sales funnel/sales pipeline which will provide information such as how many live deals you currently have in your funnel, the average size of each deal and the average length of the journey through the funnel.

It’s critically important that you not only can generate the right reports, but that you can interpret the results in a meaningful way.

4. Sales Performance

There is no one individual who has as much influence over sales than the sales manager. 

Every day the Manager sets the bar between what is acceptable and what is not, in terms performance from their team. 

They are responsible for not just managing, but also the training, coaching and development of the sales team. 

Every salesperson wants to sell, every salesperson wants to be part of a winning team and the sales managers that succeed are those that focus on 2 things:

  1. They do everything they can to help salespeople sell more
  2. They do everything they can to develop their salespeople.

Unfortunately, as the manager has the power to make everything a success, they can also be architects of their own failure.

5. Key duties of the Sales Manager

Sales managers are tasked with developing sales teams, coordinating all operations within sales departments and identifying and implement the right sales techniques to deliver success.

Although the aim is to meet sales targets, it’s not uncommon for these aims to be surpassed.

The right sales management processes can give you a substantial edge over your competitors and ensure your company is thriving rather than simply surviving.

As a minimum the sales manager should address the following areas in their plan. Strategy, Process, People, Channels, Technology, Customers and Leadership

Sales Management Framework
Objectives of Sales Management

6. Team Morale

Morale is extremely important when it comes to building a winning sales team. The more inspired and confident your team are, the more they will achieve.

This is why it’s so important to ensure each member of your team feels listened to and respected. The easiest way to do this is by including them in the sales planning wherever possible. 

Provide real-time information on as much as possible including things like the exact costs to the business to employ them, the profitability of your sales and how many deals they need to close to breakeven in terms of their own cost to the company.

Transparency is essential, so make sure each member of your team knows how well you’re currently performing.  

What’s also important in terms of morale is being completely fair and not having any personal favourites in the team. 

It’s normally easy for managers not to have favourites, however, many find it more difficult to deal with disruptive sales reps and often ignore them rather than look to resolve the problem. 

Often times the most disruptive sales reps can be a top performer but you will still need to let them go if you feel they are damaging the overall morale and productivity of the team.

It’s incredibly important to foster a positive workplace culture where workplace friction is addressed as soon as it arises.

7. Setting realistic but ambitious targets

When it comes to setting your sales targets it’s vital to strike a balance between being ambitious and being realistic.

If your targets are unrealistically high, your sales team and your sales team fall so far behind that they don’t believe they can hit those targets, they will quickly become demotivated. 

We recommend that you include your sales team as part of the planning process to help you set your sales targets. 

By doing this you are much more likely to get buy in from the sales team and as the manager, you can still guide the team to create targets that are challenging.

Unrealistic targets will only serve to  damage morale substantially and in turn, this will lower the overall performance of the team.

Managers should guide and coach their team members through the entire period of the targets to help ensure they remain on track and re-motivate them if they begin to lose confidence.

Managers typically have lots of experiences and skills that they can draw on from when they were a salesperson that will support their sales reps.

8. Building a sales funnel

Creating a sales funnel that continually is topped up with new, high quality sales leads is one of the most important objectives of sales management.

A sales funnel, also known as a pipeline is used to outline each step a customer takes throughout their journey towards making a purchase.

In B2B sales the salespeople are responsible for moving the deals or opportunities through the sales funnel. 

There is nothing more demotivating to sales reps than the struggle to fill the sales funnel with new leads.  It’s therefore important that you work with your marketing team to ensure a continuous flow of good quality sales leads.

If you are using Sales Development Reps (SDRs) to generate their own sales leads then you must give them the strategies and tactics to generate those leads. 

Tactics like cold calling and cold email campaigns do work but they on their own it is a slow way to scale your business. As the sales manager it’s your responsibility to break the entire sales process down into easy, manageable stages.

Sales funnels enable salespeople to remain organised and in control, especially when used in conjunction with a good CRM system.

With the right CRM dashboards in place Sales reps can easily see the progress they have already made towards their sales targets. 

This in turn will inspire them to continue focussing on moving deals through the sales funnel.

9. When can I expect results?

In our experience every overnight success has taken years of hard work to get there. With that said, you should see early indications of success in months, not years.  

It’s important to manage expectations and collectively agree what success looks like in the initial phases. 

This is why we are such advocates of creating a sales plan that everyone can align themselves behind. 

Your sales plan should identify what we call the lead indicators rather than the lag indicators for success and you can start tracking them immediately.  

It’s unlikely your sales management will deliver exceptional results immediately but with planning, patience and persistence you will slowly turn the ship around.

Trial-and-error can play a big role in helping you create the right sales process for you.

Even when you start seeing the results that you’ve been aiming for, you should always be prepared to make amendments as customer behaviours and requirements, technology and markets change.

10. Motivating your Sales Team

As a sales manager, you will be tasked with overseeing things like data, technology, processes and sales pipelines which you may or may not find easy.

However, often the biggest challenge is people management and listening to your team is very important. 

It’s essential to ask your team what drives them and what their personal goals are and then tie them into your own business objectives.

Not every member of your sales team will be motivated by money alone, so try to find out what else drives them and why they were interested in a career in sales in the first place.

It’s also essential to deliver additional support for those members working remotely during any lockdown period.

Some team members will be comfortable working from home, whilst others will prefer to be out in the field visiting customers and working in a busy office environment.

11. Do great salespeople make great sales managers?

One problem many companies encounter is that not all great salespeople make a fantastic sales manager.

Being a sales manager requires a whole host of different skills not required by salespeople, and it may take time to start seeing success once you’ve moved from making sales to overseeing them.

Most of the key tasks assigned to sales managers are strategic versus the tactical skills required by salespeople. 

For example, data analysis is hugely important for every sales manager, as is planning, strategy and people management. 

In addition, identifying realistic goals, hiring the right salespeople, creating incentives, arranging ongoing training and learning and matching the right kind of guidance to specific individuals in your team are all important.

12. Learning & Development

It’s easy to overlook training as a Sales Manager because there never seems to be any free time for developing your team or indeed yourself. 

Training falls into the category of important/not urgent and because of this it often gets overlooked.  In nearly every case the salespeople who don’t want training are those that need it the most.

Learning and development starts by hiring the right salespeople and only recruiting those who are driven and determined with great people skills.

The team that you inherit may be very different from this and it’s your objective as the sales manager to improve the team that you’re working with over the coming months or years.

It’s also important to seek out coachable people as these people are great learners and will continuously improve given the right support.

You will encounter people that already have good sales skills but seem unwilling to continue learning or taking feedback and this can become a problem. 

These people not only don’t want to learn but they don’t want others to learn either and can sabotage and undermine your leadership. 

Under these circumstances, as long as you have done everything possible to try and support these people if they still refuse then you will have no alternative to letting them go.

If you’re able to offer real-time information that you can display in the workplace, you should certainly do this as this creates incentives and keeps your salespeople’s eyes on the ball.

Transparency is essential, so make sure each member of your team knows how well you’re currently performing.

In conclusion

Sales managers are arguably the single most important part of your sales team and the right manager will help you achieve outstanding results when they build an exceptional and focussed team that they take the time to support.

They will ensure the organisation has the right people, structures, technology and sales processes in place progress which can be tracked and clearly visible for all the stakeholders. 

By ensuring team members remain willing to learn and committing to learning more themselves, sales managers can deliver real success, even in the most competitive markets.