Sales Coaching Blog

The Most Powerful Sales Coaching Question

Posted by Bill Eckstrom

September 2, 2015

1It is simple, succinct and should evoke great thought.  Whether you are a front line sales leader or a Chief Sales Officer, challenge yourself by answering the following question.

What does it feel like to be coached by you?

Before you read further, stop and write down the question and your answer.  Please, do it now.

Most every workshop or speaking engagement I lead, I ask this question somewhere near the beginning.  If you are like most audiences of sales leaders, and if you take the time to provide a thoughtful response, this powerful question caught you off guard.  The title of this writing likely led you to believe you would read some silver bullet question that sales leaders would ask sales people, a profound question that would cause people to think and change behaviors.  Well, perhaps that just happened…

Let’s not forget the extent to which sales

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Topics: sales coaching, sales management skills

5 Coaching Fundamentals Learned From Major League Baseball

Posted by Debbie Menke

September 1, 2015

by Debbie Menke

Director of Field Sales, US + Caribbean, Iredale Mineral Cosmetics

Recently recognized as the EcSell Institute's 2015 New Member of the Year at the 2015 Sales Coaching Summit.


Fundamental #1: Rise early. Go long. 

I grew up a bit of a “baseball brat.” My father, Denis Menke, was a professional Major League Baseball player while I was growing up. After playing, he went on to finish his 40 year career in baseball as a coach. I didn't have a traditional childhood: I watched my father play ball on TV, the Astrodome was my playground, and I hitched rides on the shoulders of big names like Pete Rose and Johnny Bench during the era of the “Big Red Machine” (World Series 1972 with the Cincinnati Reds).

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Sales Coaching: Intellectual Understanding vs Emotional Readiness

Posted by Will Kloefkorn

August 19, 2015

 “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude” – Thomas Jefferson

Executive sales leaders have a huge opportunity to grow more revenue, build a world-class sales department, and do something special. However, it is not going to be easy and that is the problem. Not too long ago I heard from an EVP of sales that he did not want to bring the same level of accountability to his sales management team that he has in place for his sales producers. What? How could you be against asking your sales managers to not be held to the same standard of accountability and expectations of their sales reps? I mean, that is leadership 101 – do not expect of others what you are not willing to expect of yourself. As we dialogued further however, I realized that while I absolutely did not agree with this EVP’s decision, mentality I did begin comprehend what he was saying, albeit still wrong.

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Topics: sales manager coaching, sales coaching, sales coaching mindset, Sales Coaching Metrics

Sales Coaching Research: What Five Words Results

Posted by Stacia Jorgensen

August 17, 2015

The results are in! What five words best describe you as a sales manager?

To give some background here, in a blog I posted a few weeks back, I asked you (all you sales managers out there) to share with me via a web-based mini survey the five words that best describe what you do as a sales coach. This was a simple data collection effort – just five questions that would literally take a minute of your time. Today, I eagerly rubbed my hands together as I jumped into aggregating and analyzing the results.

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Topics: sales leadership, sales coaching

Coaching Complexity. Conundrum or Catalyst?

Posted by Debbie Menke

August 14, 2015

by Debbie Menke

Director of Field Sales, US + Caribbean, Iredale Mineral Cosmetics

Recently recognized as the EcSell Institute's 2015 New Member of the Year at the 2015 Sales Coaching Summit.


Webster's Dictionary defines complex as: "hard to separate, analyze, or solve."

What happens when we put our employees into complex situations?  The EcSell Institute refers to the term as "complexity" and further suggests that "complexity" is a necessary "catalyst" for the achievement of greater success!

Complexity is a scary and uncomfortable place to live.  Think about the last time your boss threw you into a truly uncomfortable situation and asked something from you that seemed impossible or completely out of your wheelhouse.  Did the neurons start firing in your brain until you thought a complete meltdown was possible?

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Topics: Complexity Theory, sales manager coaching, sales coaching, Sales Management

Talk Less, Listen More:  How Sales Managers Can Use Questions to Coach

Posted by Sarah Wirth

August 12, 2015

When I ask sales managers what they wish their reps would improve in their sales calls with prospective customers, the number one response is “ask more questions!”  Overwhelmingly, sales managers are frustrated by reps who spend more time talking about the features and benefits of products and services, rather than seeking to understand the prospect’s business or needs. They know that when their reps take the time to ask questions, listen and understand customers’ needs, sales conversations flow better and are more effective. So, why don’t these managers take their own advice when coaching their reps?

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Topics: coaching sales reps, feedback, listening

Sales Reps Don’t Quit Jobs, Reps Quit Managers

Posted by Anna Schott

August 10, 2015

There’s a common belief that sales reps leave an organization because the money was not sufficient enough. This isn’t the case according to a Gallup poll of more than one million employed U.S. workers. A bad manager, boss or supervisor is the number one reason people leave. This is due to the environment their boss created and how they felt they were treated. Gallup also reported that poorly managed work teams are on average 50 percent less productive and 44 percent less profitable than well-managed groups. 

Gallup’s polls, surveys and reports paint a picture of the impact managers have on their reps. How sales reps feel about their managers not only affects their work, but also their physical health. As humans, we have evolved to be sensitive of each other’s emotional cues, even those that are not easily seen on the surface. Emotions are contagious so when someone like the manager is unhappy, then the negativity, insecurity and stress spreads among the sales reps and sometimes the overall organization.

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Sales Management: What You Won't Hear From Your Sales Reps

Posted by Bill Eckstrom

August 7, 2015

As sales leaders, we all want our sales people to sell more, and the good news is they want to sell more as well. 

Due to this common objective, we put sales people through advanced sales training, we equip them with the best products and differentiate our services in a way that should enhance how much gets sold.  We adopt the latest CRM with cutting edge apps, we intricately track their sales pipeline and get thorough feedback as to how it was created and what it consists of, which then allows us to forecast with greater accuracy.  We have a great comp program, annual sales meetings to celebrate their accomplishments and by surveying our sales people we learned of some non-productive duties that we were able to remove from their plates, thereby creating more time for them to sell. 

There is so much to consider!  However, what sales people need and what they want are two different animals.

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Topics: sales coaching

What Would You Attempt if You Couldn't Fail? 

Posted by Kathy Collins

August 3, 2015

60,0000

The words stare at me every day at our kitchen sink. They are engraved on a paper weight sitting right next to the faucet, so that everyone who comes to the sink to wash dishes, hands or pans reads the words of inspiration. It’s a little beaten down by time and water marks, but it sits there every single day reminding us all.

When I first set it there 12 years ago, I put it there for our two young boys. It was friendly reminder to reach for better than the day before as each new day began--in hindsight, it’s been a talisman for my husband and I throughout our careers. The fact of the matter is that it’s easy to phone it in every day. Show up. Do the bare minimum. Create a quiet goal to be polite and move forward in your work at a pace that at the same time fails to distract or attract attention. The lines at that point blur a little…is it failure or failure to try? One of the most simple mistakes we make daily in the workplace is not investing in the relationships around us. Our success is the sum of the investment we make in those around us every day.

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You DO have time to coach... you just have to take it

Posted by Sarah Wirth

July 14, 2015

In talking with hundreds of sales managers, there are many reasons why they don’t spend more time coaching their sales teams. Sometimes they don’t know how to coach effectively. Sometimes they don’t know which coaching activities to do. Sometimes they don’t enjoy coaching as much as they enjoy other aspects of their work. Yes, there are certainly lots of reason for not coaching more. However, there seems to be one reason that I hear most often… “I don’t have enough time to do all this coaching.”

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Topics: sales coaching, time management, Sales leader time management, priorities

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