Even the best salesperson can use a little guidance. Help all of the members of your sales team understand how to surpass their sales goals and contribute to improved overall sales performance by giving them regular feedback.
The most effective way to do this is to hold a weekly one-on-one sales meeting with each of your salespeople, to focus on progress reports and strategic planning. Of course, these meetings can be challenging, but these five tips can help you reduce misunderstandings, anxiety and defensiveness while improving your sales process.
1. Come Prepared
Before beginning a sales meeting, make sure you and your salesperson both have all necessary reports and deliverables, including:
- The sales rep’s pipeline report
- The previous week’s list of the action items
- Goals for next week’s performance
- A copy of the call report and/or previous week’s sales call activity
2. Converse, Don’t Interrogate
To set the right tone for the meeting, start with conversation. There will be plenty of time to dig into the numbers, but first:
- Ask the salesperson how their week went, in general terms
- Ask about the week’s successes and challenges. Did something really good happen? Did any unexpected troubles arise?
Use this information to shift the focus to more detailed analysis of the numbers and suggestions for the week ahead.
3. Review Performance Against Expectations
Having set the friendly tone and gotten a broad overview, move into a more detailed discussion of specific issues and metrics:
- Is your salesperson on track to hit their sales quota?
- Is the sales pipeline sufficient to overcome any quota deficiency?
- Are daily, weekly and monthly sales metrics on track to generate the opportunities needed to hit/exceed the salesperson’s quota?
4. Be Clear About Your ExpectationsWe all want to know in advance what is expected of us. At each meeting with members of your sales team:
- Reward positive sales behavior quickly, so your sales rep will do more of the same
- Outline consequences so poor behavior doesn’t continue
- Set clear action items for the following week
5. Adapt Your Style
Everyone has a particular communication style. Problems can arise when those styles conflict, perhaps because of different DISC personality types. Draw on what you know about the person and adapt your coaching style to improve communication.
To improve your sales process, it’s important to hold these sales meetings weekly. Less frequent meetings can make it more difficult to course correct, or to give relevant and timely praise.