Empowering the team to make better sales should be the number one issue on the mind’s of all company leaders. Not only does it generate better profits and promote growth, but it builds morale and dedication among employees who see themselves succeeding.
There are plenty of ways to encourage and help build a better sales team. It all starts with making them feel like they are a crucial part of the company.
How To Build A Better Sales Team
Optimize Their Schedule for Maximum Productivity
If you are into international business, it is essential to optimize your team routine to match different time zones.
Spread your team across different time zones, focusing on the busiest days and time. Here’s a glimpse at what a Buffer team looks like:
Ringostat is a call-tracking and lead optimization software that allows you to easily analyze which time of the day and days of the week need more sales managers (depending on how many calls your company receives and misses).
Another useful tool, especially if you’re planning an international meeting, is Every Time Zone which lets you easily and visually convert time zones.
Make Collaboration Simpler
I am a big believer in having a strong collaboration tool to make communication and keeping track of things easier.
I personally like using Trello and Google Drive. But there is no shortage of collaboration tools out there that can give you what you need to drive your team.
The tool which is used by major companies for intra-company communication is Slack giving all kinds of groups a flexible and fun place to network:
Give Them a Reason To Try
Never assume that being paid is an incentive to stay on board, and do your best. A paycheck does not equal job satisfaction. You want to tell them exactly how they are contributing to the company culture, how they are helping the brand succeed, and how important their place is in the grand scheme of things.
Give them a thorough understanding of how your company works, and what each individual sale and customer interaction does. They will end up giving much more to their job as a result.
A high-tech entrepreneur and chairman of Kohli Ventures, Tej Kohli, recommends:
“Your employees are all individuals with their own specific job description. If you focus on ensuring that they are self-motivated and goal oriented, they can each become their own internal entrepreneur. This is guaranteed to improve their productivity and their feeling of pride as a part of your corporate culture.”
Ask For Their Ideas
Chances are your employees have a good idea of what is needed to make their job better, easier or more productive. It can be easy to get bogged down in company policy and forget the human element that makes everything run smoothly. You may be implementing rules that are harmful to your sale’s team. This will in turn be bad for the sales they do (or don’t) make. Make sure your employees know they can come to you with ideas. Incentivize those suggestions with monetary rewards.
Example: Grocery store chain Kroger allows employees to submit suggestions to improve the store, customer relations, or employee satisfaction. Ideas that are used come with a reward equal to the scale of the improvement.
Remain Consistent Across The Board
Nothing is more demoralizing for a sales team than a lack of consistency. Whether that is in incentives, commissions or rules, it is a quick way to lose their loyalty. If you say that they should act a certain way with customers, and then another manager says not on his watch because he doesn’t operate that way, you are going to have a problem.
Have a set of guidelines that don’t change, and make sure that everyone is following it.
As CEO of Select Strategies, Paul O’Day recommends:
“All team members should be able to see the vision reflected in your decisions. Make sure your team sees how results achieved are connected”
Be a Leader That Leads
You are not a team leader just in title. You have to act like one, and that means stepping up and taking charge. Get to know each member of your team. Learn their individual strengths and weaknesses, and work with them to improve where needed. Encourage their positives, help them grow and build a better sales team.
A good team leader is someone whose employees can turn to them, and who can get the best out of them.
Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel promotes a company structure where employees are able to lead and motivate each other:
“Everyone is a mentor and mentee. It is one of the fun and exciting parts of [any] job.”
Provide Plenty of Perks to Show Gratitude
A local IT company in my city offers a lot of benefits to working for them. They give their teams, sales and otherwise, free gym memberships. They provide free Fitbits to monitor health and encourage activity. They pay for local businesses to come in and teach them random things, such as how to properly roll sushi. They sponsor get-togethers for workers and their families to get to know each other better.
This is all a part of the company culture, and it makes their teams much happier. When they are happier, they are more effective. They are also more dedicated to their company.
Never make the mistake of thinking inter-department emails are enough.
Have any additional ideas how to build a better sales team? Let us know in the comments!