October 5, 2016
Sales Leadership lessons learned along the way
Being a good leader is never easy. Being a good sales leader is even harder. With so much sales advice, some good, some downright bad, where do you turn to for sales leadership advice that is actually helpful?
We don’t pretend to know all the answers, but after 4 years of coaching sales leaders and working with our sales teams here at SalesEvolve, we have learned a few things along the way. We hope, of course, you find our sales leadership insights helpful as you work to grow and lead your sales teams.
Here are our best three sales leadership lessons that we’ve learned along the way:
The idea of anonymous surveys for your sales team might make you a little uncomfortable, but it can be one of the most important and rewarding things. Surveys give the chance for open and honest dialogue into areas where sales managers might have blind spots. Surveys create a constant loop of feedback and honesty – all of these things are helpful to sales leadership and ultimately growing sales.
“On a scale of 1 to 10” might sound like a scary question to ask your team, but the truth is using their anonymous feedback is useful for so many reasons.
Being able to evaluate the confidence a sales team has in their product/market fit, their sales tools, their playbook only helps the leadership team craft a winning sales process.
1. Over time gathering trend data and commentary from surveys can help create areas of focus for change or optimization. You can compare and evaluate correctly if you are able to notice trends. It will be easy to spot if you are dealing with the same feedback over and over, or if you are improving.
2. Once your team has lost confidence in your sales plan, it is nearly impossible to get it back. Soliciting feedback on the sales plan right from the beginning ensures that if something is going wrong, you will know sooner than later.
3. If you are able to fix sales issues as soon as possible, morale rebounds much faster than letting sales issues fester for a long time.
Surveys aren’t just a good idea – they are a great one. You are only as good as the feedback you are willing to receive and as you look to grow in your sales leadership – feedback is essential.
Servant sales leadership:
Servant leadership is a catchy term coined by Robert k Greenlead in the early 1970’s.
“A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong. While traditional leadership generally involves the accumulation and exercise of power by one at the “top of the pyramid,” servant leadership is different. The servant-leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible.”
Creating a culture of service as a leader sounds so appealing, but in practice it can be more difficult that you expect.
A servant sales leader is kind, pushes arrogance and pride to the side. They are not easily provoked, but rather stay calm and focused.
A servant sales leader doesn’t seek his or her own good but is always putting the team before themselves.
A servant sales leader is always looking for ways to honour others – and as a result sales people join and stay with teams where they are appreciated.
A servant sales leader, ultimately is followed, not because they have to be, but because teams want to follow because of who they are, what they represent and how they lead.
None of this might be brand new ideas, but implementing these ideals takes patience and hard work.
Leaders who depend on charisma always point others toward themselves. Leaders to aim to inspire always point to something beyond themselves.
Be the kind of sales leader that inspires – and we are confident you will see your sales numbers increase and the culture of your company change for the better.
The Buyers Journey has changed – and you need to as well:
Buyers today are empowered and educated. With some dedicated time, most buyers can find out what they need, who they want to get it from and how to get it – without ever talking to a sales person. Sales often has a bad connotation, conjuring up ideas of untrustworthy sales people with slick lines and very little value. You want your team and company to represent intelligent, kind and mindful sales people that are helping guide the buyers journey giving value along the way.
When we focus on our internal process and forget the buyers process we are already losing. Buyers don’t want to prospected, then qualified and or closed (even though we need to put them through some kind of system) Rather, they want to be educated on a product, understand clearly how it will help them and when they decide to buy, do so with ease. Keeping those things in mind as you grow in your sales leadership skills is so important.
Why not consider their journey as the following and see if your process is hitting the mark:
- Make the decision
Educate potential clients with the information they need in a consultative manner.
Connect with them as they deliberate – asking to be of help of clarifying anything they aren’t sure of.
Delight them with your buying process that is easy to understand, simply to follow and enjoyable to walk through as they make their decision.
This shift in mindset might seem simple, but really, it is so compelling to start to see the buyers journey as something you can inform and please your potential clients with.
At SalesEvolve, sales is our passion and our specialty.
We take the time to evaluate and work closely with our clients, asking the right questions to craft a custom solution. We know that one size doesn’t fit all in business or in sales and so we work together to find the right fit for you! Whether you require sales strategy, generating top quality leads for your sales team, or managing the sales process from start to finish, we deliver quality every step of the way.
If you’re looking to grow your revenue and would benefit from working with a trusted and established sales development company, we would love to connect. Our motto at SalesEvolve is – it’s always worth a conversation so let’s get talking!