Successful Sales Team

8 Things Successful Sales Teams Practice

For most businesses, you’re only as good as your sales team.

A poorly trained sales consultant could cost you lucrative deals, while a team of sales superstars could accelerate your company towards your goals and shatter revenue records.

Here are 8 things that the best sales teams and their leaders practice to bring their ‘A game’ and stay ahead of their competition.

1. Read Books

If you’re starting out without much experience in building a sales team, getting research done through self-help business books is a great way to start.

You can begin by building a bookshelf of sales books in your office. Manuals can cover the topics to help you grow your sales team, and allow them to freely access and reference these texts at any time.

If you wish to skip the nitty-gritty, you can also jump straight into this link,  “5 Steps to Train Your Sales Team in 5 Days” where we provide you with a simple breakdown of some incredibly useful tips to turn your salespeople into superstar closers.

2. Hiring Process

Do you have a framework or checklist to evaluate if a potential hire would be a good fit for your team?

Here are three quick tips that’ll instantly give you a good assessment of an applicant:

  • How teachable is the applicant?
    • ‘Experienced’ salespeople may have the ‘know it all’ attitude
    • This could be a warning sign to avoid because they’re not willing to adapt or grow. As the saying goes, you cannot fill a cup that is already full.
  • How well can they sell you something on the spot?
    • “Sell me this pen.” This is a classic question that was highlighted by Leonardo DiCaprio, who played the former stockbroker Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street.
    • Just like DiCaprio did in the movie, this question helps you see how an applicant reacts, if they are able to improvise and how they handle challenges.
  • Ask them to describe a time where their entrepreneurial side was revealed, the biggest problems they faced, and how they overcame these problems.
    • Did they start a club for their passion? Perhaps they spearheaded a non-profit organization to help others?
    • The answers to these questions are indicators of the applicant’s ability to take the initiative, break out of the box, and take your sales team to new heights
  • How well do they know your product or service?
    • If they took the time and effort to get to know your offers and your company, you could have a salesperson who’s dedicated to prepare and do what it takes to succeed
    • If you compare this to an experienced salesperson with no product knowledge, the time spent to train an inexperienced salesperson with product knowledge is actually lesser

3. Must-have tools

Big goals should always be broken down into manageable, bite-sized chunks that are accomplished day-to-day. And to help us keep track and stay accountable throughout the day, tools are mandatory for any successful sales team.

If you’re on a budget, there are free tools such as Trello (free project management tool), as well as Dropbox or Google Drive that helps you to keep your files in the cloud for easy, fuss-free collaboration between team members.

Other important tools for a successful sales team include a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform and a LinkedIn Sales Navigator to help you target the right prospects and connect with ease.

4. Measurable Metrics

Without Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), there won’t be any accountability.

That’s why the world’s best team leaders have monthly, weekly, and even daily summaries of their team members’ individual sales reports.

It’s best to have this automated so that you take the pressure of doing this off your employees, but for a new sales team, manual reporting is within reason when everyone is just starting out.

5. Communication

Whether your employees are required to be physically present in the office or are allowed to work remotely from home, communication and discipline are key elements to work efficiency. Ensure that communication flows regularly. If you’re unsure, frequent communication is always better than less.

Open communication as a company value will help you fix things with a quick Skype or Zoom call, rather than allowing the problem to fester. Daily reports will also help you stay on top of things and provide you with a broader perspective for easier and more effective management.

6. Base Salary

Only commission or include a base pay?

Your best salespeople perform when they don’t have to sweat for the next paycheck. If they’re worried about their salary, they won’t be focused on doing their best at work.

Remember: a desperate person will not make a good salesperson. Peace of mind is critical for performance.

7. Fire Decisively and Quickly

Even the most robust hiring and sales system will not make champions out of every hired applicant. As a business owner, your time is your most precious asset.

If you have an employee who’s been lagging for a while and doesn’t seem to work well with the rest of the team, letting this person go needs to happen fast.

When an under performing team member starts blaming others instead of taking ownership for his or her own failures, it’s a sign that you may need to pull the trigger and protect the rest of your team from such negativity.

8. Training

Your sales team should always have the “learner’s mindset” – that they’ll never outgrow learning and that there’s always something to improve on.

And as the leader, your job is to give them the latest sales strategies and training that will keep them sharp and highly effective.

Here are some ways that the leaders in the business use to stay at the top of the game:

  • Role-playing
    • A timeless sales exercise for most companies, this scenario-based training have been proven to work for new salespeople and as a refresher course for experienced staff.
  • Call watching
    • Many sales teams let their junior salespeople make calls, but have a mentor listen in and provide valuable feedback for improvement afterward.
  • Screen capture
    • Team leaders or more experienced employees can create videos for other members to learn from. Coaching lessons on prospecting, helpful tools, and other tips can be shared quickly this way.

As mentioned earlier, books are an integral part of the training for your team. They serve as great reference points for both junior and accomplished salespeople alike.