5 simple steps to energise your sales team
Having a sales team that is a little stale is no good for any business! It’s easy to slide into the ‘turn up and get through the day’ attitude, rather than attacking the day and coming out on top. Here are a few tips to help add zest to your organisation again:
1. Understand what really makes them tick.
It is expected that people work for the money you pay them. In practice though, that is not the case for everyone and especially when an employee might be considered ‘comfortable’ in their job. This often happens above a certain wage. Many sales teams and effective sales managers have applied the ‘treat them mean, keep them keen’ approach but in today’s business world there is a scarcity of talent and pushing your best people away because of old management techniques is not the way to go.
Speak to your team individually and see what motivates them personally. Is it money? Time off? Travel? There is definite generational differences, millennials tend to be more motivated by experiences and travel than a pay rise.
Learn to incentivise performance a slightly different way - time off instead of more money for example. How about finding what parts of the job they hate and looking for a ‘work around’ instead of simply saying “that’s the job take it or leave it”. Your sales team is your very best asset. It pays to make a little more individual effort and find what triggers that a star performer to go a little further.
2. Get together more!
Understandably, every business has a different team dynamic and a different geographic challenge, but from a human perspective we psychologically work better when we feel that we ‘belong’. Thus ‘team dynamic’ when strengthened increases the ‘work for the team that I belong to’ motivation.
Investing in team conferences and ‘away days’ might seem counter intuitive, but science shows that working psychologically their way bounces back with better loyalty and increased drive.
3. Show them they’re worth it.
Similar to the idea of ‘team days’ deliberately investing in your team makes them feel valued and that is, to many, a bigger driver than another £1000 bonus. Try investing in some training. Bringing in a named speaker to add impact at a sales meeting can also help - it never implies that they aren’t good enough, it simply shows that you believe in constant improvement and that they are worthy of spending money on. They’ll also see it as an investment in them, giving them the satisfaction of progression at work, and the feeling that they belong.
Demonstrating this says far more than simply telling them in every meeting that they mean a lot to your business - show them by doing something extra.
4. What’s new?
When you have been selling the same old widget for many years even those of us with the strongest mindsets can get bored! Where is innovation? Where is something new? Deliberately injecting a new service or product range gives a team member something new to re-connect with clients about. It’s like a brand-new start and a fresh reason to chat.
Sadly, many companies don’t look sideways and add products or similar service offerings often enough and then lose staff to other jobs, because every one of us needs to have something new now and then. Try deliberately adding new once a year and keep your team fresh by the company being fresh.
5. Expand your openings!
Too often a company grows a stable management team and then keeps churning the sales team below and doesn’t think twice. Is there visible and tangible progression in your company? Are the managers looking up and saying, “where do I go from here?”, are the sales team members also asking what their chances of advancement are?
Very often a sales team grows and then sticks. A true sales performer needs progression. The apprentice learns the craft because they want to be a master. If they see no room for to grow internally then all you have done is grown a competitor. Think long and hard at your company’s advancement opportunities because nothing kills a sales team as fast as a perceived dead-end role.
You'll be able to incredible sales masterclasses at the Northern Business Expo on 17th & 18th March at Manchester Central. It's free to come along and listen, and you'll also be able to ask any questions you might have in the Sales Advice Centre. You'll be attending alongside thousands of other professionals, business owners and entrepreneurs, so the networking opportunities are invaluable - get your free ticket today!