Sales Coaching Blog

5 Ways to Apply Positive Pressure

Posted by Stacia Jorgensen

December 28, 2016

5 ways to incorporate more positive pressure.pngJust like when you treat a wound, sometimes the best thing you can do is apply pressure. The same is true in sales coaching. New findings from our research indicate that the most highly impactful sales managers are ones who gently push their sales teams in a way that elicits a positive reaction or growth.

First, let’s make sure we’re on the same page when we talk about this pressure or pushing. At EcSell, this is a part of a concept we call the Catalytic Factor, or the C-Factor. Sales managers who have the C-Factor create an environment on their team that propels people into higher performing zones and zones of growth through the introduction of challenges, new experiences, or strain. Here, we focus on two behaviors in this concept: encouraging reps to move outside their comfort zone and stretching a rep’s selling skills and abilities.

So, here we go…the following five best practices can help you start to incorporate more positive pressure (and as a result, have positive growth) within your sales team:

1) Incorporate Role Playing 

What you should do:

Take the time to create and incorporate role-playing exercises. Make your situations challenging and meaningful so that your reps can grow in their skills by navigating new or uncomfortable situations in a safe environment.

2) Help Your Reps Progress in Their Career

What you should do:

While most reps have a vision of where they want to go in their careers, they may not have a clear path of how to get there. Understanding your reps’ career goals and pushing them to make progress has a positive impact on their work performance and personal life. Checking back in with your rep on these goals and holding them accountable to progress is critical here.

3) Provide Documented Feedback

What you should do:

Creating documented feedback is all about accountability and reps find more value in managers who hold them accountable to their actions and outcomes. The push towards improvement generated by knowing what they are doing well and where development is needed is a behavior that reps see as critical to their growth. Meet with your reps, document your discussion, and check back in on their progress (sound familiar?) will drive the impact here.

4) Model How to Handle Stress

What you should do:

Often times the most growth comes from the most challenging situations. Reps tell us that managers who thrive even in highly stressful situations are the most effective at introducing growth-producing pressure on their reps. By modeling how to accept and progress in challenging times, you’re showing your reps how they can do the same when problems arise. Show your reps through your behaviors how they can take pressure and turn it into growth.

5) Provide Your Reps Opportunities to Grow and Develop

What you should do:

While it may sometimes be uncomfortable or unpopular, reps ultimately want to be given opportunities to grow and develop. Look for ways that you can introduce your reps to new skills, knowledge, or situations. Small pushes, such as asking your reps to lead team meetings or taking the lead on solving a dilemma, can be the fuel for large growth.

A more in depth view into these best practices can be found here.   

Applying pressure to your reps can have high and positive impacts on your reps’ performance. Keep in mind that, like many things in life, there is a balance to the amount and type of pressure you introduce. These five best practices, however, are a good starting point to pushing your reps to grow and achieve beyond what even they might have thought possible.

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Want to push yourself to become a better sales manager? Register for EcSell'sSales Coaching Summit this Spring to learn more best practices that can make you perform at the next level.

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Want to learn more about how to be a better sales coach for your team? Download this complimentary Sales Coaching eBook:

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Topics: growing sales, sales leadership, Research, sales coaching

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