A great sales department is essential for any company, as it helps them acquire profit. This is why so many managers are trying their best to coordinate a sales team as well as possible, and drive the best results from them. However, it’s not always easy to manage a team of salespeople, as their personalities tend to be a little difficult. Here are some tips on how to manage a sales team that will prove successful in any situation.
General qualities of salespeople
To achieve success, a good salesperson needs to be strong and have a powerful personality. This means they need to have great social skills, they have to be outgoing and talkative. Of course, this makes it easier for people to like them, and turns them into visionaries. They can convince anyone to do what they want, and this should work as an advantage.
However, for a manager, these qualities might seem a bit difficult to tackle. Whenever they want a clear result and a problem to be solved, they can count on these people. However, they might find it hard to be organized. Also, whenever you ask something of them, they might react impulsively.
Therefore, taking care of a sales team can be difficult for a person that is extremely analytical and pays attention to details. When learning how to manage a sales team, it’s important to keep in mind a few things that they would help you ‘tame’ these people and have great results.
Tip 1 – Do not impose rules
The first step in learning how to manage a sales team is to learn they don’t like rules. These people do not enjoy working in a strict environment. They are used to doing whatever it takes to promote and sell a product, so they are used to a kind of freedom.
Instead of imposing rules and limits on them, you’d better concentrate on removing all the obstacles they have in their way. You’ll see that allowing them to work in their own conditions will be more profitable. If you impose some rules, they might concentrate on finding ways to avoid them.
Tip 2 – Let them come up with solutions
Whenever there’s something that needs solving, do not go and tell your sales team what to do. Explain to them this is a difficult situation, and have an open conversation on what this means. Do not act as a boss, as they won’t appreciate it.
You have to make sure they understand your situation as well. Therefore, ask them to think of what they would do if they were you. In the end, let them find their own solutions to solve the problems. This way, there will be no constraints, and you put their creativity at work.
Tip 3 – Recognize their successes
One of the easiest ways to keep your team productive is to recognize their merits. Sometimes, it’s not enough to give them performance bonuses. Show those people who are good at selling that you appreciate their work and efforts.
Praise these people in front of their colleagues, and present them as a positive example. Also, make them feel respected and happy to work in such a team. This way, they will stay motivated and continue bringing great results in the future.
Tip 4 – Encourage competition
Although you might be managing a team, competition is always beneficial. It’s the easiest way to convince people to work and make quick sales. You don’t have to drive your team members one against the other. Just apply a few strategies and see how your sales are increasing.
First, set some targets. No matter what you want to achieve, establish these goals from the beginning, and use some incentives for the people. However, don’t make things too complicated. Select one goal at a time, and you’ll definitely see the results.
If you like, you can let your team have fun while they’re selling the products. You can start some small contests, and encourage the people to have fun while competing. Then, offer a prize to the winner, but don’t make the others jealous. The purpose is to motivate your team, not to divide them.
Tip 5 – Try to be a good leader
Sales teams are more productive if they have a leader that inspires them. They are more willing to do a good job if they see you making efforts to understand and motivate them. First of all, create a relaxing environment where no one should be pressured for results.
Then, be as energetic as possible. If they see you being positive, they will take your example and adopt the same attitude. Also, always care about the results of the entire team, not only those that are beneficial for you. Be honest with them, and tell them if there’s something wrong. In case you have done something that you shouldn’t have, always take responsibility for it.
Tip 6 – Fit your coaching style for every individual
Salespeople might have some common traits, but it doesn’t mean they are all the same. Therefore, you have to treat them differently. Perform one-on-one coaching sessions with each member of the team, and shape your strategy accordingly.
Also, be understanding with them. They might have different ways of working, and don’t blame them if they use a different method than you did. This is their way of functioning, and allowing them to apply their own strategies will prove successful in the end.
Tip 7 – Choose the perfect sales team
You already know what makes a good salesperson. Make sure all the members of your team have all the necessary traits to be successful. When hiring a new team member, assess their selling skills, but also their personality. Hiring the wrong person can be a bad decision for the entire team.
Learning how to manage a sales team requires determination and patience. Salespeople can be difficult and disorganized, but you have to learn to respect their methods. Most of the time, they bring great results in a flexible environment with few rules and a relaxed atmosphere that allows them to thrive.