Putting together a team that works as a well-oiled machine is probably something you dream about as a manager. Do you feel like the experience of a team syncing up in all ways possible is about as elusive as catching a glimpse of Big Foot while camping in the woods? You’re certainly not alone. For your team to hit their goals and contribute their maximum capabilities to the company, the right people must be on your roster.
Here are three tips that you should always be striving for to build a strong sales crew:
1. Know your Metrics. Simply put, for your business to be successful you need to have a strong set of metrics for your sales team to work from. Metrics that waffle or are unclear to your sales team spell disaster as you’ll be dealing with a frustrated sales staff. Even the newest member of your team should be able to understand what the goals are in all stages of the sales funnel. If you feel as though there’s not a cohesive understanding what the key goals are in each area, time to get back to basics and define metrics. Need more reason to know your stuff? Harvard Business Review notes sales preparedness among 12 of the most important sales metrics.
2. Network for the Future. The Pareto Principal is sometimes known as the 80/20 rule. In sales, this equates to 80 percent of your business coming from 20 percent of your sales staff. Does this mean you should fire all the slackers and keep hiring until you have a stable of rock stars? Unfortunately, that will never happen. However, with coaching and structure even people who don’t seem like a great fit in sales can succeed.
On the other hand, networking remains one of the best places to find new hires. Have you ever gone to one of those screamingly early networking breakfasts at 7 AM? Look around and note the go-getters at those meetings. Get their cards. If you’re ever in a place where your sales team is getting thin you may find your next rockstar within that stack of cards rather than wading through resumes to find your diamond.
3. Those Who Can, Teach. The most successful sales teams come from a company that places a high value on coaching. Since a lot of sales training is learned in the field, you won’t have any two people who sell the same way. When you are going over sales objectives you need to ask questions to delve into where the sale went right, and where it went wrong if the deal was not closed. Focusing only on numbers won’t teach people how to sell. If you can identify where each person failed and succeeded then you’ve created a real sense of team and a recipe for sales success.
Jason Kulpa is the CEO of Underground Elephant, a San Diego-based company that provides customer acquisition solutions by helping them utilize marketing automation.