The Coaching Effect Blog

Coaching Conversations: Creating Trust Relationships

Posted by Sarah Wirth

August 22, 2014

A couple weeks ago, I discussed the importance of not only coaching your reps’ skills, but also coaching their mental performance. To keep your reps performing at their peak level, you have to ensure they are always mentally engaged with their work. To that end, I introduced three key coaching principles that you can use to help improve your sales reps’ performance mentality:

  • Creating relationships of trust with those you are coaching
  • Asking powerful questions to drive effective learning
  • Facilitating growth experiences for your team to maximize their potential. 

In today’s blog, we are going to further explore the first coaching principle of creating relationships of trust.

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Topics: Coaching Sales People

Sales Coaching: As a Leader, what is your value?

Posted by Sherri Daubert

August 14, 2014

 “Your value is what you can do to help someone else address an opportunity or solve a problem that matters to them.”

                                                                                Dr. Bret Simmons

 

 

As a sales management leader involved in sales coaching you know the value of your reps and what each individual brings to your organization.  But what about your value?    When you think about your priorities are you first and foremost a coach or a manager?  The goal of either is increased sales performance of their teams but perhaps the very best way to achieve that is to understand not their value but your own.   

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Topics: Coaching Sales People

Sales Leader Time Management: What Are Your Obstacles?

Posted by Sarah Wirth

July 10, 2014

If there’s one thing that we hear from sales managers on a regular basis, it’s how busy they are.  And when you look at everything on their plate, there’s no doubt that statement is true.  From sales trips with reps to company meetings to responding to customers to putting together sales plans to monitoring their pipeline, sales managers are pulled in many directions from numerous groups of people who need their time and help.

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Topics: Coaching Sales People, Time Management

Sales Management Best Practice: How to Make Team Meetings Worthwhile

Posted by Sarah Wirth

June 25, 2014

Team meetings… just the term itself can elicit a groan from sales reps.  It conjures up images of boring powerpoints and a sales manager droning on endlessly about pipeline reports or new product specs. The reps know they’re supposed to be paying attention, but really, they’re just itching to talk to the customer that emailed them ten minutes ago.  So, how can a sales manager capture the attention of sales reps that would rather be anywhere else but the meeting?  We will explore how team meetings can become engaging, interactive and informative so reps see them as critical to their learning and success.

First, we will examine why team meetings are important to the success of a sales team.  Next, we will discuss the most significant reasons why team meetings fail and what you can do differently.  Finally, we will talk about specific ways to make your team meetings more effective.   

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Topics: Coaching Sales People, Team Meetings

The Sales Skills Audit: A New Kind of Performance Review

Posted by Sarah Wirth

June 11, 2014

Almost every sales manager hates doing performance reviews.  And why wouldn’t they? Most of the time, they’ve been handed a form from their human resources department that isn’t specific to sales and that forces them to write long paragraphs of feedback about areas that may not be relevant to achieving success in their role. 

Moreover, after so much writing, each review starts to feel and sound the same, so the managers question how much value they are even adding through the review process.  This is why EcSell Institute recommends a new kind of performance review for a sales team – the sales skills audit (see form here: Sales Rep Annual Skills Audit (Performance Review).

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Topics: Performance Reviews, Coaching Sales People

Sales Coaching Tip: Using Questions for Better Coaching

Posted by Sarah Wirth

May 14, 2014

One of the most important sales techniques we teach our new sales reps is how to ask good questions.  There are so many reasons why questions are important in the sales process.  They help us uncover customers’ needs.  They help us learn about the customer’s business.  They help customers self-diagnose their issues and how we can help solve them.  And a great questioning process can create customer buy-in for a solution before we even suggest it.  Simply stated, knowing how to ask questions and follow-up accordingly is one of the most important lessons a salesperson can learn.  So why do we so quickly forget that lesson when we move into sales management?

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Topics: Coaching Sales People

Just Do It: The Importance of Sales Coaching

Posted by Sarah Wirth

April 30, 2014

At EcSell Institute, we have the honor of talking with sales managers day in and day out about the coaching of their sales teams. Based on hundreds of these kinds of conversations with sales managers, it’s clear that most sales managers have a good handle on the best practices that they SHOULD be doing to better develop their team members. 

One-to-one meetings, documented feedback on sales skills, de-briefing joint sales calls – all of these are among the most critical activities they believe help drive their team’s success.  Which is why most execute these activities to some degree.  However, most sales manager will also admit that they do not do these activities as consistently as they should and probably not as effectively as they could. So that begs the question, if most sales managers agree these activities are critical to their team’s success, why don’t they execute them well?

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Topics: Coaching Sales People

Sales Team Development Meetings

Posted by Sarah Wirth

February 19, 2014

Like many of you, the EcSELL Institute leadership team has a weekly meeting where we discuss strategies, goals and progress. These team meetings help keep us on the same page, drive collaboration among different departments and ensure that we are focused on our shared priorities. Once a month, however, we dedicate our weekly meeting to a different purpose – our development as individuals and professionals. I have to confess this is the weekly meeting that I look forward to the most because it’s a chance to step away from the day-to-day work and invest in ourselves and each other.

EcSELL Institute research shows two of the most important things sales managers can do to motivate their reps is help them improve their selling skills and develop their careers. The reason these activities increase rep motivation is because people tend to be more engaged in their work when they are improving, learning and developing. And this is precisely why we as a leadership team dedicate two hours each month to our own learning and growth. That is, we all feel more energized when we’ve taken the time to consider a new idea or explore a different concept, so the investment of time yields a great return by amping up our engagement and motivation.

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Culture, Coaching Sales People, Professional Development Ideas

Sales Manager Effectiveness: Frequency of Joint Calls with Reps

Posted by Bill Eckstrom

November 13, 2013

  • Are the sales reps on your team new or tenured?
  • Are they primarily phone or field sales?
  • How large is the geography a sales manager has to cover?
  • Are your sales managers “player/coaches”?

Every sales manager has differing circumstances that impact the amount of time spent doing joint sales calls with reps, the above variables being the most obvious.  The question should never be “do I do joint work with my team?”, but only “how much joint work should I do with those on my team?”

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Topics: Coaching Sales People

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