The Coaching Effect Blog

To build a TEAM, Become a LEADER. Learn how.

Posted by Kristi Shoemaker

September 7, 2010

Posted by: Kristi Shoemaker, Marketing, EcSELL Institute

I came across a powerful article written by author and entrepreneur, Dr. John C. Maxwell that talks about leading and motivating a sales team. Here are the highlights.

To Build A Team, Become a Leader.

People in your sales department won't come toether as  a team by themselves. They require help. They need someone who can help them learn how to work together toward a common goal. In other words, they need a leader who has the skills and emotional understanding to build them into a team. No matter how good the people you work with are, if they don't have a good leader, they won't reach significant goals. As the Sales Manager, you must become that leader!

Every good leader is:

A MODEL  People do what people see. Most people learn 80% of what they learn from what they observe. So being a team player starts with you. If you want them to be dedicated, you must demonstrate that behavior. If you want them to care for each other, you must demonstrate your caring first. SHOW them what you EXPECT from them.

A MENTOR   A mentor adds great value to those he/she influences. Helping your sales team grow to their maximum potential is a very important role for Sales Managers. You need to see your people for not as they are, but as they could be. Build on their strengths and coach to their weaknesses. A mentor takes an active role in a person's growth, not a passive or reporting role.  Walk with your people through difficult situations, help them navigate through it until they can do it themselves. Get off the sidelines and get involved.

A MOTIVATOR   To come together as a team and accomplish a common goal, a group must move from potential to action. Action requires motivation. The most successful people are highly motivated, but not all started that way. Sometimes people need a boost to get started. Inspire them with the VISION. Praise their contributions. Give them incentives. Show how individual goals line up with the team goal.

It all starts with you.

The first step for you is to change your perspective about yourself.

1. See yourself as a leader - don't see yourself as the "boss" or "commander"

2. See the Vision for your Sales Team - define what victory means to you personally and for the entire team

3. See Your People as Team Members - value people more than assets. See them as a team, not a collection of people.

4. See Yourselves as Winners - Rather than trying not to lose, focus on winning.


To learn even more on this subject and to build your own leadership and coaching skills, be sure to attend the EcSELL Institute Sales Leadership and Coaching Strategies Summit on October 14-15 in Memphis, TN.  Active learning! Proven approaches! Interaction with experts and peers!  It all adds up to maximizing the performance of your team.

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