Most Sales Managers Aren’t Willing to Do This | Sales Strategies

I’m currently working on a large project where I work closely with several sales managers. Unfortunately, I have been disappointed with their managerial qualities. This is because they don’t practice coaching and exhibit leadership—skills that all of these sales managers are more than capable of displaying. However, instead, they make excuses, hang on to existing customers, and get engaged in customer service or delivery work—work that isn’t their primary responsibility. As a result, their sales team suffers.

Not Enough Sales Meetings

Far too many managers are not having regular sales meetings. They do not bring their teams together enough on a regular basis. They usually have meetings only once a quarter or once a month. More importantly, however, that is not enough time to keep the sales team motivated. The best practice I see is once a week and at a minimum every other week. Particularly, you will want to review topics such as stuck deals, pipeline cadence, new products, company announcements, market changes, and customer wins or loses. This collective group discussion is critical to driving performance.

One-on-One Coaching

Furthermore, these sales managers have a flawed definition of coaching. Riding along in a car for a joint sales call is not coaching. Coaching is dedicating one-on-one time with the sales rep where you are observing them in the field, reviewing pipelines, or helping them with a deal or learn a new skill. In this dedicated one-on-one time, you’re not selling—you’re coaching. Your primary responsibility is to drive their sales performance forward.

Sales managers that consistently practice coaching and exhibit leadership perform at a much higher level than sales managers who don’t. In fact, studies show that if you just spent 3 hours per sales rep per month—from coaching, running sales meetings, or observing your team in a deal—you will achieve 107% of your target.

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