- Diversify your hiring methods
When adding new sales people to your team, search for online experts and people who excel in face-to-face interactions. Build a team with people who have a successful track record and complementary skills in the sales process.
- Set realistic SMARTA (specific, measurable, attainable, results-oriented and relevant, time frame, agreed or support) goals and acknowledge successes.
Successful salespeople thrive in competitive environments, in places that support their ambitious personalities. Not only do these team members want to achieve their goals and those of the company, but they often want to exceed them!
- Look for the competitive spirit
When hiring new sales team members, look for natural winners, people with a competitive profile. How can you quickly assess whether someone has a competitive nature? Find candidates who enjoy competition in their personal lives and who love to win.
- Don’t limit the potential commission
Putting a ceiling on the commission is akin to limiting the motivation of a sales person. In essence, it says to the employee: “We only reward you for a certain amount of work; once you reach this result, you will get nothing more for your extra efforts.” Why would you tell your best salesperson to stop selling?
It is more profitable to provide a modest base salary to your salesforce and open up all possibilities with regard to commission. It is the company’s responsibility to motivate their sales staff and encourage them to keep bringing in more business.
- Provide training and consistent coaching
Simply offering your sales people a suggestion here and there is clearly insufficient. Your company must invest time and money in training and coaching to enhance their expertise and improve their current and future performance. Without the necessary training and coaching to reinforce their behaviour, members of the sales team can very quickly fall back into bad habits that could lead to lost sales and, consequently, be very costly to your business.
Hold regular training sessions to strengthen sales strategies and make sure that the entire sales team receives the same training and techniques. Don’t hesitate to offer them coaching following their telephone solicitations. Ask them to record their calls and give them the required feedback.
Accompany your sales people to meetings with clients to evaluate them, and offer them feedback after each visit. It is essential to assess their skills and also to pinpoint what may be lacking. This is a ‘must’ if you want to achieve and even exceed your goals.
Follow the progress of each team member from the very beginning of the training or coaching. This monitoring will make all the difference in their level of commitment, discipline and constancy.
Determine where each sales person is having the most difficulty. The sales team must learn from the most common mistakes and make it a point to avoid them. This practice will allow less experienced sales people to understand the evolution of your company’s sales process. This, in turn, will allow you to give a specific direction to your sales team and thus optimize their results.