One of the problems with many sales teams today is the sales leader or sales manager became a manager because of his/her selling proficiency, not because of their coaching and managing ability.

This situation is exacerbated by the fact that very few (if any) colleges and universities offer a four-year diploma in sales management.  In my humble opinion that’s a tragedy, especially when you contrast the number of universities that offer a four-year diploma in marketing management.

I can only speculate about why this circumstance exists within our academic institutions, but you can do something about it right now.  Specifically, focus on becoming a coach.  I contrast the definition “coach” with a cheerleader.

A cheerleader is the manager or sales leader who puts cliché sayings on the wall, who leads sessions and says things like, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”… I know you’ve heard some of those types of speeches.

A coach, on the other hand, focuses on answering the most important question all salespeople and sales teams should have in their vocabulary which is, “If you keep doing what you’re doing, what will you look like at the end of the year?”

Far too few sales managers coach utilizing this approach.  Now, the reason for this is the fact that most organizations have failed to establish a series of KPIs for their salespeople to follow.

Without KPIs and mathematically correlating KPIs to results (new accounts, transactions, dollars, etc.), it’s virtually impossible to coach your team predictably and precisely to optimum levels of performance.

I encourage each sales manager to establish a series of KPIs.  These are metrics that account for the activities that a salesperson undertakes.  As these KPIs are documented, they should be mathematically correlated to the results the salesperson is achieving.  If the results aren’t satisfactory, the KPIs must be adjusted.

Follow this process and coach your team regularly (at least every other week) in one-on-one KPI/metrically based coaching sessions, and you will be well on your way to predictable, profitable results.

As always, I wish you…

Good Luck and Good Selling!!!

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