If we look at reasons for a drop in sales performance today, we will observe that primary reasons are missed opportunities, difficulty in reaching target or goal, unqualified leads, unable to negotiate a deal etc. With this backdrop, organizations are increasingly opting for coaching for their frontline sales team and business development managers. A survey by Sales Executive Council (SEC) has indicated that when salespeople are provided with quality coaching, their performance improves by 19%. This high return on investment (ROI) reinforces the practice of selecting sales coaching for the team.
The process of coaching for enhancing sales performance is iterative, personalized, focuses on behaviors, skills and techniques rather than numbers and is based on the salesperson’s daily routine and targets. Individual motivators and strengths of the salesperson is considered during the journey and a one-size-fits-all approach is not used.
Some benefits of opting for sales coaching are as follows:
- It gives a medium to share and know the best practices in sales and adopt strategies for greater effectiveness
- It helps to reduce the high attrition rates commonly seen in sales team
- It reinforces sales training and therefore, helps the learning to be continuous and retention to be higher for the sales team
- It focuses on bringing about a behavioral change and developing key skills necessary for effective sales
- It plays on the strength of the salesperson
- It provides the sales professionals with strategies to overcome sales challenges
- It focuses on building relationships within the sales team so that together they can increase the sales performance
- It provides ongoing support to the sales professionals rather than being a one-time effort
With all these benefits listed, there is no further room for explanation why sales coaching is important for your team.
Here are some highlights of Strengthscape’s approach when coaching for sales team:
We start by building trust and rapport as it is key to any coaching relationship followed by asking probing questions to help the coachee gain insights on personal strengths, motivators and stressors
- The initial awareness session is clubbed with proper evaluation of where the coachee is against key sales competencies such as networking, customer focus, ability to understand needs and pitch, sales acumen etc. For this, well standardized and highly reliable psychometric self-assessment tools are used. It gives an edge and additional information to reduce the blindspot the coachee may have.
- Our methodology broadly remains as DANCE within which the objectives agreed upon with the coachee are related to their sales role
- As mentioned in the benefits – sales coaching focuses less on numbers and more on behavioral change. At Strengthscape, the coach takes a behavioral approach by providing an understanding of what are the behavioral priorities of the coachee as a seller and how it is different from the behavioral priorities of the buyers. In certain cases, self-assessment tools are used for evaluating behavioral priorities in the context of selling and buying styles. The coach helps the coachee in providing a structure to come up strategies to manage these behavioral differences.
- The role of the coach is not to be commanding and directive but be a resource who helps the coachee to develop insights and come up with their own action points
- The coach also plays the role of being a hard task master when holding the coachee accountable for their action points and follow up through their commitment
- Since sales coaching is aligned to one’s daily, monthly or quarterly targets, the coach can also engage with the manager of the coachee who can use the existing data from the CRM platform to indicate and work on the areas for coaching.
- Sales coaching process can work with all levels in the sales team. The area of development only shifts focus. For instance, in a sales representative’s role, we would focus on the basic selling skills and behaviors and the process of achieving the sales numbers. However, for a sales manager or Director of Sales, we would focus on Strategic Selling, Account management as skills.
- The process for coaching can be either time bound, say 3-6 months or can go upto 9-12 months depending on the seniority and complexity of the role and the areas of development arrived at.
To know more about the coaching journey for sales team, our past work, the assessments we use and any other details, contact us.