Sales managers are often faced with the challenge of a representative who seems to be doing the right things but yet isn’t making sales. This is the strategy that will help start your people out on the right foot and how to diagnose why someone isn’t selling.
1. Know it! Lead the way!
A sales leader must know their stuff. They must really know how to be successful from personal experience. The best managers were great salespeople. It is true, however, that the sales manager does not always have to be the best of the best. In fact, as is often seen, the best players aren’t necessarily the best coaches but they were ‘good’ players.
2. Teach it!
The best coaches have a system that they teach to their people. This is their competitive advantage. They come up with a way to teach new recruits HOW to approach, present and close business. I sometimes hear a sales managers say, I am not sure why it works, I just know it works. A manager must become a technician of their demo (knowing what works and why) and with that be able to teach their people how to do it correctly.
3. Show it!
One of the best tools a manager can use is real-life demonstration. Showing how it can be done. There is confidence and belief that is communicated when a rep sees a manager make a sale. There are even positives when a sale is not made because the person sees the manager just keep going for the next prospect and not get down. The next best is listening to the new person’s demo and giving feedback. When a manager is a technician of the sales presentation, they can give specific feedback to a new person to hone their skill.
4. Promote it!
What is Next for them? Keep them moving forward!
Promote what is next
First sale (I’m so excited for you to get your first sale out of the way)
The first big sale or big week
Next personal record or best
The chance to beat another person
Prize that week in the contest, Lake Powell, Cruise…
Next pay increase or bonus
What is next is what drives them forward. The manager is the driver.
Why aren’t my people making sales? They are working ‘hard’ but not succeeding!
The ONLY 5 Reasons Reps aren’t Selling
1. Not working
Salespeople can waste time in so many ways!! The only way to fix this problem is to manage activity (See this post on motivation http://ryanspelts.com/2013/11/14/i-am-just-not-motivated/)
2. Not enough referrals/ leads
If there are no leads there needs to be an effective way to find new prospects. Salespeople should be finders as well as closers. The easiest way to find new prospects is through referrals. This should be part of the managers’ “system” of success.
3. Scared to close (Aren’t asking for the sale) (So, Whattaya think?)
This is more common than you might think. Reps want customers to grab the paperwork out of their bags and fill it out. They forget that — to close — is their job and must be done.
4. Don’t believe in the product (Not worth the money)
If there is something missing in their personal conviction therefore their integrity is compromised and customers will not respond to them.
5. Not teachable, not following the program, the demo, or the presentation. (Doing it their own way)
I have had many sales reps who think they have come up with a better way to present. Although there have been a few who came up with a better way, it was never a new rep. Reps must stick to the program and once it is successful, they can make it better but not before.
That is it. There are only 5 reasons. If someone working for you is not selling, it is one of these 5 reasons. Figure out which one and dig in.
When someone is struggling you need to dig deep.
The question you are afraid to ask is the question you need to ask. Find out why they are not selling. Work through the problem with them. Pop fear balloons. Find out what they fear and work them thru it.
Individuals respond differently. Some respond to praise, (I will walk on coals if you tell me a good job at the end of it). Some respond to incentives. Some respond to challenge. Get to know your people and work with them … drive sales (Don’t just hope your team sells). Some will work extra hard so you will buy them dinner tomorrow. Find out what makes your people tick.
The other thing to remember is to spend 80% of your time with the top 20% of your people. Don’t let slackers wear you down. Don’t let them drag you down. If you find yourself working with all the lowest performers, you are wasting your most precious resource, your time. Give the most attention in time to your best people. Spend the most time thinking about how to better serve them and spend the most time serving them. It is too easy to spend your time with the bottom 20% who are struggling.
Incremental Managing Steps:
Get them to believe they can
Get them to learn the approach
Get them to work (manage activity)
Get them to sell something … anything
Get them to sell consistently
Get them to be a high achiever
Get them to be a superstar