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Ask any sales leader whether they want to build a high-performing team, and the immediate answer will be “Yes.” But what are the specific best practices that support this goal? Here are three that we have seen in organizations that are thriving in 2021.
Whether you are a sales leader responsible for an entire team’s performance or a single salesperson looking to hit your income target, Sandler’s KARE tool is a simple, powerful resource well worth spending some time with in Q4.
You probably don’t need me to tell you that 2020 has been a year like no other. Let’s be honest: there were (and are) no playbooks for magically reversing what’s happened in the marketplace during this historically tumultuous period.
One of best pieces of advice I ever received about holding on to important clients and customers was this: During times of uncertainty, approach your business contacts from a different perspective than during so-called “normal” times.
This is a question we often hear from sales leaders, and it’s a topic that we could spend hours, days, or weeks examining in depth. In this brief article, we’ll look at two powerful resources that can keep sales teams (and sales leaders) on track: the KARE profiling system and the Pursuit Navigator tool – both of which were created by Sandler.
In today’s current market conditions, leaders need to accept that the success of their teams and their companies will rely heavily on striking a collaborative, coordinated balance between creative strategic thinking and effective implementation.
Attracting and keeping good salespeople is at the top of every sales manager’s list of priorities. The better we are at inspiring and holding on to great salespeople, the happier, the more engaged, and the more successful they will be.
2020 was the year. Your company was going to experience exponential growth. The plans had been meticulously prepared and presented, blessed by the board, applauded by all business unit leaders around the table.
Many of the sales leaders I talk to these days tell me that they are struggling with the issue of keeping the team(s) focused. Of course, this problem, which extends across all industries, comes at a time when many of us are directly or indirectly confronting issues related to the global pandemic, to financial pressures on both the personal and organizational scales, and to questions of social unrest. It's not all that surprising that sales teams are distracted. Everyone is distracted. The question is, what do leaders do about it when that distraction reaches the point where it affects revenue generation?
Every one-on-one meeting with someone who reports to you is unique. Each will have its own priorities and its own dynamic, based on the personalities, experiences, and professional roles of the participants. That said, there are some important topics for sales leaders to cover during each weekly one-on-one meeting with any salesperson.
When we experience a crisis, we may be strongly tempted to focus our attention on what was happening during the period that came right before the crisis, the ‘Old Normal.’ We may even be preoccupied with the current impact of the crisis itself. It goes against all tenets of self-preservation to look beyond that immediate time of crisis and instead focus on a plan of action in the future recovery phase.
One of the main goals of an L&D strategy is to improve employees’ performance. Your training sessions must result in a motivated and resourceful staff, one able to close more sales. But how do you create a strategy that actually improves employee’s performance?
Many of you reading this article right now have a team (or teams) of people that report to you in some form or another. As you think about those people, your time spent leading them, managing them, coaching them, developing them, working with them, and yes… all of the other things you have to do as part of your roles or responsibilities, it doesn’t leave much time to add on a thorough accountability process to that list… or does it?
As a sales leader, you're measured by your team’s performance. Ultimately, you're judged based on their ability to generate revenues sufficient to meet or exceed your corporate goals. So no matter how good you may have once been as a seller, it’s important to understand that selling is not your job now … and you can't expect to generate enough revenue to meet your team’s quotas simply by acting as a player-coach.
It’s the start of a new year, with new goals, new challenges, and new opportunities. Each sales team is unique … but every team leader in every industry is, we believe, likely to be interested in the answer to a critical question about the year 2020: What can we do to improve closing ratios and margins this year? Here are three proven strategies to consider from the Sandler leadership playbook.
Holding salespeople accountable: This is one of the major challenges of managing a sales team – regardless of whether it’s a traditional team where people show up for work at a central physical location, or a team working remotely, or a team at a call center. What, exactly, is the best way to do this? And how do you do it without falling into the trap of micromanaging people?
I remember taking a parenting class when my boys were young. The big takeaways from the class were the requirement to tell your child what the consequences of their behavior would be and to be clear on what you expected from them. I recall my boys’ mother and me saying to each other on numerous occasions, “We can’t get mad at them if we weren’t clear with our expectations.” Sometimes, the principle sounded like this: “Don’t punish them if you didn’t tell them they would be punished.”
What kind of salesperson should you always be on the lookout for? What specific traits does the ideal sales hire always possess, no matter what industry you’re in, and no matter what your market looks like?
The aggressive, sustainable growth so many company leaders seek, but few can actually point to, lies in moving yourself and your organization into a growth-driven sales culture. The following three steps are essential preliminaries to that shift.
If your answer is “no” then you can stop reading now because nothing in here will be useful to you. If you answered “yes,” then you are definitely not alone. Here are five tools to increase innovative thinking.
One of the things I talk about often with sales leaders who are eager to maximize their team’s performance is the principle of reinforcement. All too often, we think of training for salespeople as a one-and-done initiative, as something we can check off a list once the "training" event is over and consider finished. Actually, the training we have invested in is next to worthless if it is not reinforced over time, incorporated as a personal priority, and made an ongoing topic for discussion within a personalized sales coaching plan. Reinforcement is thus one of the neglected secrets of effective sales leadership.
In the business world it’s often been said, “Our strongest asset is our people.” But how often is it stated that they are also your greatest weakness? Every business can benefit from a reality check. If you use a systematic strategy for developing the people in your key roles, that reality will likely reveal the valuable human assets on your team.
People have many fears. Obviously, there are natural fears which have helped us to survive as a species but let’s leave them to scientists. This time, I would like to review the work-related one: the fear of change.
The internal revolution that delivers a predictable, rapid growth curve requires a scalable sales team. This revolution always starts with the sales leader; it is always launched, modeled, promoted and defended by that leader, in close collaboration with the senior leadership of the company; and it always expands outward.
Very often, managers who lead sales teams find themselves saying something like the following: “I have told them how to do X a hundred times, and it never seems to stick. I just don’t know what their problem is.” Or these managers may find themselves thinking, “Maybe I just hired the wrong person.” At such a moment, it makes sense to ask: Is the problem really with “them?” Or could at least part of the problem be with us?
Many organizations underestimate the power of content when it comes to boosting sales conversions. With the right content metrics in place, your sales team will be better prepared to tackle – and close – a lead successfully.
Trials and demos can be an important part of your sales cycle, especially in the enterprise space. Another term for a trial or demo, is the “Monkey’s Paw,” which is a small version of your larger service or a consulting project. A successful Monkey’s Paw has three components, which are similar to a successful trial.
As sales leaders, we need to accept that we will ultimately be judged on our ability to hire and retain people who are both willing and able to do the job of selling. If either of those elements is missing in a sales hire that happens on our watch, we’re not doing our job.
John Rosso, Sandler trainer, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful at closing complex sales and navigating enterprise decision processes. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
Many managers are surprised to hear us suggest that it’s important to meet one-on-one with every salesperson on staff at least every other week. Some even say it’s impossible! But it’s not. If you keep the meetings brief ... if you think of these interactions as check-ins rather than as opportunities to “fix” people …
On this episode, Bill Morrison from Sandler Training in EMEA speaks with Daniel Zamudio, founder and CEO of PlayBoox. Bill and Daniel discuss an important idea in sales and sales leadership in corporate organizations; how to take great strategies and turn them into action with a playbook. What should be included in your playbook? Effective ways to create and share a playbook in order to get on track and stay on track.
Prajwal Gadtaula, Founder of Business Brainz, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful at doing enterprise-level account research and pre-call planning. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
There’s a tendency on the part of some managers to expect their new sales hires to “hit the ground running.” Often, managers justify this expectation by telling themselves that they only hire “self-starters.” Both of these assumptions are part of an ineffective hire-and-forget approach, one that can and should be remedied by a solid onboarding plan that’s based on a series of monthly one-on-one coaching conversations.
At many of the organizations we work with, the size of the average sales team has increased over the past decade. Given that there are a limited number of working hours, and given that sales leaders now find themselves responsible for supervising, training, mentoring, and coaching larger teams, what best practices should they embrace when it comes to time management? Here are three to consider.
Tina Phillips, Sandler trainer, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful at using your Sandler techniques and tools in a personal or professional crisis. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
The 2019 Sandler Summit, which took place at the Rosen Centre in Orlando, Florida, was the best-attended Summit yet, both in-person and online. We covered a lot of ground, but I’d like to share with you two takeaways, in particular, from this year’s Summit.
Joe Ippolito, Sandler trainer from Boston, shows you how to succeed at building a winning sales team with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful in management. Get the best practices collected from around the world for recruiting, hiring and onboarding top sales talent.
The hot labor market is stressing hiring managers and their organizations like no other job cycle in the last 20 years. Despite the mounting pressure of filling an open role, organizations that remain true to their hiring standards will win in the long term.
Let’s start by talking about the elephant in the room: Cold calling is almost every salesperson’s least favorite topic. In fact, the only two groups who like the idea of cold calling are those who have never done it and sales managers.
What is the ideal mix of daily and weekly activities – the mix that best supports our income goals? We should know. If we have a personalized daily “recipe” for daily and weekly progress toward key activity benchmarks, also known as cookbook or a behavioral plan, we can identify exactly how many dials we need to make, how many conversations we need to have, how many referrals we need to ask for, and so on… every single working day.
The SalesAccountability platform offers a wide variety of functions to help your team improve their sales process. Learn how to add users and setup teams within the platform to hold your team more accountable!
This bonus episode is brought to you by the Sandler Annual Sales and Leadership Summit in Orlando, FL March 20th-22nd. To join our trainers from around the world and about a thousand of your high-performing colleagues, go to here for more information.
Jim Ayraud, Sandler trainer and co-creator of www.SalesAccountability.com, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful at maximizing your time invested. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
Glenn Mattson, Sandler trainer and course instructor, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful in financial services. Get the best practices collected from around the world for selling insurance, investments, and financial planning.
Consider these three, often overlooked, reasons to remember how critical Q1 is to your business’s growth. Each reason represents a specific opportunity for your organization to start strong and make the very most of 2019.
Lisette Howlett, Sandler trainer and author of the new book, The Right Hire, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful at hiring salespeople. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
There is much research proving that proper sales coaching can lift your sales 20% or more. Not only does coaching increase revenues, it also builds a culture of self-sufficiency, growth, and retention.
All too often, what holds salespeople back in terms of reaching their potential is not a missing sales skill or an improperly applied technique. More often than managers like to imagine, the problem is a failure of leadership.
Not only is it important to set goals for the New Year, but it also makes sense to take some time to reflect on the successes and setbacks from 2018. Below are four suggestions on how leaders can use insights and learnings from the year just past to shape their organizational growth plan for 2019.
Nick Tokman, also known as Sunshine as seen on Discovery Channel's Emmy-winning show, Deadliest Catch, shows you how to succeed with the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques needed to be more successful in finding your passion and choosing a direction for your life. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
Leaders: January will be here before you know it! With that inescapable reality in mind, consider the following five strategies you can use right now to ensure that your business is positioned for maximum growth in 2019.
Stephen J. Cloobeck is a self-made business leader with over 30 years of experience across every aspect of hospitality design, development, and deployment. As the original founder and former CEO and chairman of Diamond Resorts International - a business that grew to become one of the largest vacation ownership companies worldwide - Cloobeck made a name for himself as the industry's most adamant advocate for radical customer service, which he calls embracing the Meaning of Yes.
Antonio Garrido, Sandler trainer and author of Asking Questions the Sandler Way, joins us to talk about the attitude, behaviors, and techniques of building better habits. Learn how to find and replace negative habits with better ones that lead to more success and better productivity. Get the best practices collected from around the world.
David Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler Training, talks about how to introduce a manager or another team member to your prospect. Learn the best practices collected from over a thousand Sandler employees around the world.
Al Simon, Sandler trainer, joins us to talk about the attitude, behaviors, and techniques of sales interactions. Learn the advantages and best practices of having a system for salespeople to follow and knowing your own sales gates. Learn how to lead and control the sales interaction and teach your buyer how to make the right decision.
Chris Lewis is the CEO and Founder of LEWIS, one of the world's largest private communication companies. He joins us to talk about his new book and the attitude, behaviors, and techniques of top performing leaders in the new century. Learn how to succeed at leadership in the 21st century.
Clint Babcock, Sandler trainer from Tampa, joins us to talk about the attitude, behaviors, and techniques of negotiations. Learn how to find, understand and use sources of leverage in your sales negotiations. Learn the advantages and disadvantages of salespeople in final negotiations.
Mike Montague shares his thoughts on business development in this special bonus episode. Learn the problems and challenges of traditional marketing, advertising, and sales approaches, and what to do about it. You will discover how to add people and opportunities to your sales and marketing funnels without peddling, pushing or price-cutting. Why resort to gimmicks, when you can be a professional business developer?
Jon Denn, Vistage Chair from Boston and author of Drumbeat Business Productivity, joins us to talk about the attitude, behaviors, and techniques of being more productive. Learn how to avoid distractions, be disciplined, and get more done. Learn how to great a steady drumbeat of productivity.
Pat McManamon, a longtime Sandler trainer from Jacksonville, FL, explores how to be more intentional in your sales management. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top leaders for managing salespeople.
David Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler, shares his thoughts about how to improve your interviewing and hiring capabilities. He shares 5 tips to take your interviewing to the next level. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top leaders and how they interview.
Learn how to create a sales culture with Matthew Pletzer, Sandler trainer, and Mike Montague, VP of Online Learning at Sandler to talk about creating a sales culture and how that differs from company culture.
With January rapidly approaching, many sales leaders have started thinking about the team goals they will be setting for 2019. Team goals are important, of course … but it’s essential to bear in mind that they are, by definition, the sum total of individual goals, and the individuals on your sales team are motivated by different things. Here are three critical steps sales leaders can take to support their team members’ personal goal-setting process in the coming year.
Dale Bierce, Sandler trainer from Sacramento, CA, talks about the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques sales managers and leaders should have towards sales forecasting. Is your sales pipeline predictable and reliable? Learn how to succeed in knowing what is coming from Sales.
Lorraine Ferguson, Sandler trainer from Albany, NY and author of the new Sandler book, The Unapologetic Saleswoman, shares her thoughts about being a strong, confident woman in the sales profession. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top female sales performers, and uncover the challenge and benefits of saleswomen.
David Mattson, Sandler's President and CEO, shares his thoughts about gauging the prospect's motivation and interest. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top performers, who can uncover and qualify the prospect's reasons for doing business.
David Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler, shares his thoughts about delegating and how to pass the baton in a way that gets results. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top leaders and how the delegate tasks.
As we enter Q4, sales professionals in all industries are likely pondering the same question: Am I on track? If the answer, based on the best available hard numbers and the most objective real-world assessment, is “no,” then it’s likely that another question is looming in the shadows behind the first one: How do I get back on track?
We took another look back in our vintage audio vault and found this gem from David H Sandler, our belated founder, on how to manage your time and your priorities in the sales profession. Managers and salespeople should give this a listen and ask themselves hard questions about how and where they spend their time.
Danny Wood, Sandler trainer, shares his thoughts about the best questioning strategies and how to get to the next level in your sales skills. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of top performers, who are masters of this technique.
Tim Pattson is the TradeshowGuy. He is the author of Tradeshow Success, host of the TradeshowGuy Monday Morning Coffee podcast, and founder of TradeshowGuy Exhibits. He joins us to talk about the best practices for succeeding at trade shows.
Many managers ask us for help in identifying the best way for them to support their new hires, so these employees can more rapidly reach the point where they become productive team members. The four strategies listed below will help you to do a better job of training and coaching new employees with little or no experience in the role – so they can make bigger contributions more quickly.
People will work much, much harder for their own reasons than they will ever work for your reasons. You, as a manager, have an obligation to find out exactly what those reasons are. And the very best way to do that is by leading with kindness.
Jim Marshall, a long-time Sandler trainer from Florida, joins the podcast to talk about how first-time managers can be successful at coaching their direct reports. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of great leaders, and learn how to incorporate them into your new management position.
Dave Mattson shares his thoughts on sales leadership and how to build a culture of continuous improvement through role play. This Selling the Sandler Way take is a great listen before your next sales meeting.
Sharlene Douthit joins the podcast for the first time to talk about employee retention. Learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of great leaders, and learn how to incorporate them into your culture to stop turnover and keep valuable employees.
Recently, I’ve done a lot of talks on conflict resolution the Sandler way, which I consider the cornerstone of personal and organizational success. I’ve received many requests from audience members asking me to summarize the talks in written form. With those requests in mind, here are nine points to consider when you find yourself facing drama and conflict — and you wish you weren’t.
When leaders hear the word “diversity,” they often think about gender, or race, or geography. Those are all important issues to consider, of course. But there’s an under-examined aspect of diversity that too many leaders overlook: behavioral styles. This aspect of diversity is the great unexplored topic the contemporary workplace. We find that managers who address this issue of behavioral diversity, and train and reinforce accordingly, benefit from a team with varying perspectives. That means better problem-solving, better communication, and better outcomes.
Chris joins us to talk about how to hold your team accountable and how to demand excellence from yourself and others. What does it mean to set a high bar, and how to do you pull it off without upsetting your team
When we use the word “Excellent” to describe a business or a team, we’re talking about a certain specific way of doing business. In our experience, there are three clear criteria that consistently define organizational excellence
Learn how to improve your team's chances of success in the supply chain industry. Ralph Henderson, Sandler Trainer, talks to Dave Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler, about how the ideal attitudes, behaviors and techniques in the supply chain world.
To produce and grow at the rate which you need to be successful, you must have a dynamic sales team. The team must be formed through careful planning, hard work, and collaborative efforts. From a 10,000-foot view, this may seem easily accomplished, but let’s go more in-depth and tackle some of the inherent challenges with hiring and onboarding the right team.
Learn how to improve your team's attitude, behavior and technique to improve their chances of success. Eric Dunn talks about how to breathe life and results into your sales team. Learn the best practices for improving effectiveness and efficiency.
Learn how to empower your employees to take ownership and learn how to solve problems on their own. Clint Babcock talks about how to know which things to take off your plate and put them onto someone else's. You can't be great at everything, but you can build a team that is.
Some managers start looking for fires to start with their team, so that they can swoop in to the rescue. They have no time to set up a meaningful accountability program, they’ll say, because they have too many (self-started) fires to fight. Most of the leaders I work with are dubious at first that they could ever play the role of the Primary Arsonist. Yet it’s easier to fall into this pattern without realizing it than you might imagine.
Learn how to apply the DISC personality framework to uncovering prospect's buying motivations or PAIN, in Sandler terms. Hamish Knox, Sandler trainer and author, returns to the podcast to talk with Dave Mattson about combining these two classic Sandler frameworks and selling strategies.
Learn how to be an effective manager, by learning how to coach and train. Tom Niesen and Dave Mattson, two very experienced coaches and trainers talk about what it takes to improve your team's performance through coaching and training.
One of the most challenging aspects of a successful career in sales management is knowing when to let your foot off the gas, assess you and your team’s status, and regroup before hopping back into the fast lane. While difficult, this is an imperative skill for a sales leader to possess.
Learn how to empower your employees to take ownership and learn how to solve problems on their own. Mike Jones talks about how to know which things to take off your plate and put them onto someone else's. You can't be great at everything, but you can build a team that is.
The digital revolution is innovative, inspiring, and even pervasive. We’ve come a long way in a short period of time, and many of the things we take for granted now weren’t even in the realm of possibility a few decades ago. As impressive as they are, the reach and impact of electronics when it comes to communication can have detrimental effects. Below, I identify three important elements that should always be involved in business relationships, no matter how advanced technology becomes.
Communication is important to a growing business and sales team, but that’s only part of the equation. Employee development is another key aspect for continued growth and success. While this topic is often incorporated into business plans, it’s commonly overlooked and bypassed in pursuit of other priorities. Below are four reasons why employee development should be at the top of the list.
Eric Warner, Sandler trainer from Boston, talks about the attitude, behavior, and technique needed to properly execute a job interview. Whether your next hire is this week or later this year, learn how to prepare for and execute a job interview that results in a successful new hire.
Dave Mattson, President and CEO of Sandler Training and 6-time author, returns to the show to talk about his new book, The Road to Excellence, 6 Strategies for Building a Bulletproof Business! You will learn the attitudes, behaviors, and techniques of the top performing organizations, and how you can apply these principles to continuously improve your company.
Improving your efficiency or effectiveness is only as good as your method of determining and evaluating success. It’s easy to earn a win here or there, but repeated success over a long period of time can only be done through hard work, analysis, and reinforcement. Below, I have outlined five ways to gauge the success of your team, how you got there, and what to do to keep it up.
In today’s world, many managers don’t get to develop people the way they would like. It’s harder and harder to spend quality time with all the team members so managers must make sure each interaction delivers value for everyone. This means creating structure and clarity around all interactions with the team–or, as David Sandler put it, eliminating mutual mystification.
Communication is key in any relationship. Whether that relationship is with your spouse, your peers, your children, or your employees, it always comes back to a transfer of information, honesty, and respect.
Dianna Booher is the author of 47 books, including Communicate Like A Leader, and founder of Booher Research. The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.
The new year is right around the corner and it’s filled with new opportunities and challenges. As we head into 2018, make sure that you’re as prepared as possible to lead your team to success. To be an effective manager, it’s important to fully understand your team dynamic. Below are five keys to doing just that.
With the start of basketball season this month, it’s the perfect time to focus on building a great team. The phrase “dream team” gets thrown around a lot, but it’s most commonly referenced when discussing the incredible collection of talent that was assembled by USA Basketball for the 1992 Olympics.
Rule #25: Don't let sales people leave training in the classroom. Use a collaborative, equal partnership inside and outside the training room. Here's the bottom line for sales leaders. You may have other people doing training for your organization and training your people. But, ultimately, you are still responsible for your team.
Make sure your people understand roles and responsibilities. Miscommunication and keeping people in the dark is probably one of the ongoing challenges for any leader. When you have projects, let's assume that project is going to do something very important for your organization and you've got the right people on the project.
Rule number 23, create a culture of accountability. Help your people own their success. Listen, every time I do executive coaching, one of the top topics is how do I create a culture of accountability. Okay, I agree. We want it. We all strive for it. We want our people to accept challenges.
Welcome to Selling the Sandler Way, with your host Dave Mattson, the president and CEO of Sandler Training. He is a five-time bestselling author, speaker, trainer, and consultant to hundreds of international organizations. In this show, he talks to other Sandler trainers about the Sandler Selling System.
Rule number 22. Hey, people don't argue with their own data. Use self-discovery to break through performance barriers. I learned this a long time ago. People remember 20% of what they see, 30% of what they hear, but 90% of what they say and do.
The How to Succeed Podcast is a public and free podcast from Sandler Training, the worldwide leader in sales, management, and customer service training for individuals all the way up to Fortune 500 companies with over 250 locations around the globe.
Let’s face it motivation, or motivating others is hard, especially if they are employees of yours. One of the most common things I hear from business leaders is “our people just need to be motivated.” Now, in all honesty, this may be a true statement.
Change management is the systematic approach to transitioning from one environment to another through the reassignment of resources, business processes, budget allocations, or other aspects that significantly alter a company or organization.
Rule number 20. Mentor to a success profile. Create a success profile that people can grow into. Mentoring is where you're going to spend five to 10% of your time. It's a key aspect of leadership, but we don't do it often enough, so you need a process for it.
Bill Bartlett, a Sandler trainer and author of the best-selling Sandler book, The Sales Coach's Playbook, talks about his best practices for coaching your team through an organizational change. Bill shares his attitudes, behaviors, and techniques for coaching in this special episode.
Rule #19: Train Your Team. Make sure they get the skills necessary to do the job. Listen leaders, training is one of the four hats of leadership. You're going to spend anywhere from 20 to 30% of your time in your training function. Now, do I train less or more if I have experienced people? Of course, that's why you have a 20 to 30% swing. The more experienced people that you have, maybe the less that you have to train in some of the basic stuff.
Rule #18: Create the Curbs on the Roadway. You know, too much supervision creates learned helplessness. Think about that as an example. Do you want to create learned helplessness on your team? Probably part of you does. The ego part of you wants everyone to ask you what to do next.
Culture is a term regularly associated with offices and sales organizations. Employees working in a positive work environment feel that the culture better reflects their beliefs and values and, in turn, they are more effective, efficient, and fulfilled in the work they do.
You know as a leader, you're going to have many different roles throughout the day when you interact with your team and your coworkers. We call them the four hats of leadership. Those four hats are supervision, training, mentoring, and coaching. All four of them are equally as important. Supervision, goal setting, setting expectations, having daily conversations, sales funnel management.
Rule #16: Follow the four Goldie Locks steps. Use middle ground management as your strategy. We have two different types of managers if we go to extremes. We've got those who are detail oriented, and they're looking over your shoulders, and they're micro-managers. Micro-managers create an environment where people are afraid to act on their own, where they're afraid to take that next step. That's not a good place to live.
Joel Burstein, a Sandler trainer from Pittsburg, talks about his best practices for leading by example. Whether you are a first time manager or an experienced executive you are leading by example, whether you are intending to or not. Joel shares his attitudes, behaviors, and techniques for leading a team by setting a good example.
Rule #15: People work harder for their reasons than they do yours. Motivate the individual to hit the corporate goal. Here's what this means. We all have kids, and when you want a kid to play an instrument because you love the instrument and you want them to be successful, you push, push, push. If they don't have the passion, confidence, and conviction that that's what they want to do, they end up not doing it. You spend a lot of time and energy having them live through your eyes, and the same thing holds true with corporate goals.
Did you know that the average tenure of a Sales VP is only between 24-32 months? They barely have time to unpack their bags and get settled before they are looking for another position. In the meantime, the company has not only lost its Sales VP but probably its best sales person as well. Why is this? And is there something that can be done to change this dynamic?
In our constant pursuit to arm you with tools to become a sales master, we recently released a new book titled, Winning From Failing, by Sandler Trainer, Josh Seibert. While there are entirely too many teachings in the book to list here, below we have highlighted a few that encompass the essence of the book and are important takeaways for managers.
Rule #13. Be a comfort zone buster. There's no room at Complacency Inn. What does that mean? Well, have you ever run into a situation where somebody on your team was killing it? I mean doing everything that they had to do, above and beyond, things that they felt uncomfortable doing and things that they felt comfortable doing.
Rule 12: Manage individuals; lead a team. There's no substitute for personal attention. Listen, every human wants to be paid attention to. Everyone wants this one-on-one connection. They want eye contact, they want one-on-one time, they want you to pay attention. This is true at home. Kids want your attention. They want you to ask questions. They want you to understand the deal.
Summer can be a challenging time for businesses. Reduced productivity from individuals going on vacations or taking time off can lead to slow sales. This common phenomenon is a subject we’ve covered before on the Sandler Blog, with tips on how to combat the slow season.
In this episode of Selling the Sandler Way, Dave Mattson, the President and CEO of Sandler Training explores the Sandler Selling Philosophies behind the Sandler Selling System with Rich Isaac, a Sandler Trainer.
Rule #11: Mange behavior, not results. Create a cookbook or a recipe for success. You know, many sales leaders and sales managers, they manage numbers, not behavior. Think about that for a second. How many of us are knee deep into spreadsheets every single day?
Rule #5: Eliminate miscommunication. What was said? What was heard? Check before you respond. You know, every person has three recorders that were taping since they were born. We have a Parent, an Adult and a Child. Three roles that we still have today if you think about it. But these tape recorders were starting and stopping at different times. And it affects how you interact with your team and how your team interacts with their sales force, even today.
Holding your people accountable is simple. In working with sales leaders around the world, accountability isn’t easy because those leaders possess one of three self-limiting beliefs that cripple their accountability program.
If you were to Google ‘servant leadership,’ you would come across a list of traits that included some or all of the following; listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, building community, and nurturing. While each of these components are valuable, the sheer number of them convolutes a fairly straight forward ideology.
There are only 24 hours (or 1,440 minutes) in a day. What you do with those hours has a direct impact on your overall productivity and your career. From the cold calls you have to make to the internal meetings and client visits, how can you squeeze it all into each day without missing out? The way you schedule your time, the format of your meetings and even your approach to delegation are important. Your overall approach to time management can help you make the most of each day to ensure you have a positive impact on your career.
The last quarter of the calendar is both relieving because the end is in sight, but also foreboding for many sales teams if sales targets have not yet been met. An incredible amount of revenue exchanges hands in the last quarter, and many companies know that it can make the difference between a good fiscal year or a bad one, especially in product sales. Managers are regularly tested to find ways to push teams over that last mile.
The very best people skills that candidates will ever employ are on display in the interview situation as they try to win a position with your company. If they don’t capture you there, do you really want them in front of your valuable customers?
A successful sales year relies on good planning and smart strategy. Any plan for success requires that you create goals for yourself and your sales team. But no amount of planning or strategy sessions are effective if the goals are unrealistic and can't be met. Setting and achieving realistic goals are critical to meeting sales quotas or any other benchmarks of success.
As a leader, you are limited. Limited physically, financially, emotionally, and mentally. You are limited by the amount of time in a day. I have seen countless leaders who tried to ignore this simple fact from time to time with devastating effects on their physical health, family, and mental health. There’s a limit to how much one person can do.
Within sales organizations, companies often perceive salespeople as a necessary evil, as opposed to an asset. If dollars and cents were attached to that asset, a company’s hiring practices may be taken more seriously and the loss of a salesperson may be seen as an expense.
Giving sales-related tasks their due diligence is part of growing your business. As business growth occurs, you have to divide your time amongst more tasks, more clients, more sales team members...you can see where this is going. The busier you get, the easier it is to fall into the trap of ‘busy work,’ or tasks that make you feel like you're accomplishing things but actually detract from business success.
Many sales organizations get caught up in the details of educating or convincing their prospect to buy. Some sellers might even ask “What do we need to do to earn your business?” and worry about what they can do to facilitate the buying process. “What do you see as next steps?” is another common question that salespeople ask. These sellers lose sight of the fact that it’s the prospect that needs to do something for a sale to happen.
As business leader, you want to build your organization, which requires that you make judgment calls about the best possible candidates for various positions. While fantastic hires are wonderful assets that help to grow your organization, bad hires can drag it down, costing the company unnecessary money and potentially eroding the brand.
If you’re not getting enough of the right candidates, then you must put the right behavior in place to source “passive” candidates. It’s not enough to just place a job ad and sit back. The fact that they are not explicitly seeking your opportunity presents a bit of a challenge; you have to approach them differently than you would an active candidate.
There is no one-size-fits-all sales coaching model. There are only approaches that have been shown to be successful in particular situations. Acting as a coach, the manager must identify each salesperson’s personal “success code” – and use that code to unlock the salesperson’s potential for success.
Does your company need sales training? Maybe, maybe not. But how will you determine if you need it and who are you going to hire? If you meet with a sales trainer he’s going to steer you towards what he can deliver. If he is a great sales trainer, he ought to be a great salesman. Instead, take it from a company that delivered sales training for over a million salespeople worldwide. Here is what you should consider.
Let's face it; communication is one of the most important issues in the workplace. Good communication helps everyone on your team (and you) to feel heard and understood, and as a result, everyone benefits from a positive, encouraging and successful environment. Conversely, ineffective communication brings about the opposite results. Ideas fall flat due to lack of follow-through. You and your team feel frustrated, unacknowledged and misunderstood, and morale declines.
As the weather heats up, many companies begin to look with dread upon the impending summer slowdown. For brands unprepared for the upcoming lull, it can be a challenge to keep the company moving forward and productive during the summer months. With people in and out of the door due to vacations and time off, it can feel impossible to get anything done.
There is no question that developing skills in time management and efficiency are critical to career advancement. The people who pull ahead and end up taking leadership roles, as well as the higher income opportunities are those who have repeatedly evidenced an ability to work at a higher level of productivity without more resources. In short, they work smarter, not harder.
Is your salesforce not performing? Too much turnover? Are your best sales people leaving for greener pastures? Our labor marketing and workplace culture for salespeople is changing, and organizations that are able to tap into this newly engaged, passionate workforce stand to gain market share and success for years to come.
There is no one-size-fits-all model for developing salespeople! Every member of the sales team has an individual “success code” imbedded in them, and the effective manager must dial into it in order to unlock their true potential. Once selling skills and sales process have been taught and behavior expectations are established, the manager’s focus must be on raising the performance bar with an effective sales coaching methodology.
Stress is a natural response of the body to challenge, fear, attack, excitement and other external stimuli that gets our heart racing and the blood vessels pumping. However, too much stress, which happens regularly in a stressful workplace, and the body starts to break down. It’s not a good formula for a successful career, no matter how hard a person works.
Sandler Training released a new public and free podcast last week called, “How to Succeed.” It is an inside look at the attitudes, behavior, and techniques necessary to succeed at anything. Host, Mike Montague interviews Sandler trainers, authors, and experts about how to succeed at absolutely anything. You will learn how to get to the top and stay there!
Anyone can become a salesperson. There’s no real barrier to entry and no barrier to continuing a career in sales. As with most professions, anyone can become a “subject matter expert,” but that does not automatically make that person a good salesperson.
Management success lies in being able to pull your employees together so that they work as members of a seamless, successful, powerful team that is more than the sum of its parts. How can you guide your employees into forming this kind of team? Let’s examine some of the ways in which we can take lessons from the most successful college basketball teams in the country, and tuck their skills into your own management toolbox.
Successful sales managers know that an environment of fear and pessimism never allows for their team’s best performance. Your attitude as a leader, mentor, coach, trainer and sales manager will greatly influence the results of your team. Salespeople who are empowered, motivated and encouraged to pursue opportunity and abundance will find ways to succeed where others never will.
The words "manager" and "leader" are often used interchangeably. But there's a difference in these two roles, as well as the workplace environments they create and the results they elicit. Put these 10 best practices to use to increase the effectiveness of your management style and see positive results in your workplace and employees.
You might reason that with the appropriate education, training, direction, and encouragement, any one of your sales team members can become a top performer—a “superstar.” Is that true? It’s likely that everyone has the ability to improve. But not everyone will become a superstar, regardless of the resources and opportunities made available to them.
The Monday morning blues do not have to be a part of your work environment, and cultivating a positive atmosphere around your organization can be a fantastic way to drive the business forward. In the spirit of March and 'expect success' month, here is what all professionals should know about the power of positive thinking in the workplace.
As the first quarter comes to an end, it’s appropriate to review your department goals and measure your progress. Will your sales team hit the quarterly benchmarks for your department’s strategic initiatives? Have they made significant headway? Or, have they fallen behind already?
Many sales managers attempt to manage their salespeople by “managing” their numbers. You can track numbers, but you can’t actually “manage” them any more than you can manage the weather. But, it is from the observation and analysis of the numbers that you can identify pathways for improved performance.
The road to a successful sales career is filled with disappointments, rejection and uncertainty. If all you have is the willingness to put up with those things then you’re 99.99% of the way there. So, what attributes does a person need to have to be successful? Here are the top 3 that I recommend you look for when interviewing someone for your business.
As a manager of people, you know and understand the challenge of the "new" workplace. The reality of four generations working side by side is fraught with obstacles that threaten to derail productivity and hinder progress. Before you pop another antacid and check again to see if it's time to cut a trail home, take heart in knowing there are ways to be an effective manager in a workplace made up of the Silent generation, Boomers, X'ers, and Millennials. The first step is acknowledging each generation has its own preferences, expectations, and strengths.
A good manager understands that disciplining employees is part of the job, but a great manager recognizes that discipline is not synonymous with punishment. To prevent future problems in the workplace and improve your management skills, implement these respectful employee disciplinary steps.
What does a company need to be successful? Many people would say investors and a solid business plan, but in addition to these important factors, a company needs effective managers.
If your company suffers from lackluster sales, take a look at the management behind the team. You may discover that effective management makes all the difference for a successful sales force. Here are a few reasons why solid management is absolutely crucial to sustaining a great sales team
Although teamwork is frequently the most efficient way to complete a big project, many managers struggle to lead a cohesive team. Managing individual employees along with the broader group dynamic brings confusion to team projects, causing the work and your team management capabilities to suffer. Tackle teamwork problems before they come up with these 25 tips for becoming a more effective team manager.
"Two heads are better than one." We've all heard the old adage encouraging teamwork, but what does working together really do for you? Salesmen thrive off healthy competition, but sometimes the use of teamwork in the workplace is a better answer for winning sales. Here are six ways that teamwork benefits you in the workplace.
No one likes being told that his or her work is lacking but, as a manager, relaying this information is a fundamental part of your job. The manner in which you deliver constructive criticism, however, determines whether you are simply a manager, or a great team leader. Yelling and belittling your employees will prevent them from appreciating or trusting your leadership abilities.
Unavoidable conflicts often arise when you work on team projects. Coworker's differences can contrast sharply to your own, creating tension within the group. These differences are not necessarily a bad thing, though. Healthy constructive criticism helps create diverse methods of thinking and solutions to difficult problems.
Being a manager that is both well respected and effective in the workplace is a difficult balancing act. While it is important to keep your employees happy, you also need to ensure that their work is still producing results. The first step in managing effectively is to recognize the problems you may be inadvertently causing. Here are five common mistakes and possible solutions to keep your employees thriving in the workplace.
The traditional corporate structure in the workplace is ready for a change. With Millennials entering the workforce, there is a resounding call for a structural shakeup. These young professionals have a lot to say and they want to have their voices heard. Successful companies are noticing this. Instead of paying attention to only GPA's, they are looking for critical thinking and problem-solving skills in new hires.
In the past ten years, Millennials have been entering the workplace more than ever. While some may still view Generation Y as overeager interns, these developing leaders are becoming the future of successful business. And while it is easy to view a younger generation as lacking in knowledge and experience, the truth is Millennials have a lot to offer. Here are five ways this technologically advanced generation has the ability to bring new life and energy to a workplace:
1. Gen Y Believes In Transparency & Equalit
Many seasoned sales managers today are facing a common challenge: how to lead, motivate, and inspire young Millennials on their sales teams. This generation, which will make up roughly 50 percent of the U.S. workforce in 2020 and 75 percent of the workforce in 2030, has already garnered a reputation for being difficult to manage by traditional standards.
Understanding when to take a coaching approach over a managing mentality can make a huge difference in your effectiveness as a leader. To be an effective leader you need to master both leadership styles; the key is to know when to wear which hat.
When you're managing, you're often organizing a project, providing instructions, outlining the end goal for your business, and you may find yourself being more directive and task-oriented
It's a fact: most organizations need a killer sales force. Business development, marketing, must-have products or services – these are all essential to meaningful revenue growth. But your sales team is the heart of production. Your salespeople are the ones championing your offer and driving precious profit. Your team should be the best it can. Period.
But how do you build a successful sales team? Buckle up, because it's no easy task. As long as you follow these seven essential steps, however, you'll have a team of sales all-stars under your belt.
Managing a team of sales reps with various motivations and egos is no easy feat. And if you're a sales manger, you know that it can be a complicated and sometimes challenging role that requires a number of management skills to be successful. At Sandler Training, we've discovered that highly effective sales managers possess a set of skills and characteristics that make them stand out from the rest.
So how do some sales managers continually lead successful and goal-oriented sales teams while others repeatedly hit roadblocks and obstacles
Want to hear a troubling statistic?
The US Department of Labor estimates that a bad hire costs your business 30% of that employee's potential year-one earnings. This is a conservative estimate, too. It's difficult to calculate the loss incurred when you hire the wrong person for your business.
Every manager and business owner has dealt with bad hires. Maybe they started out seemingly stellar, fitting your company culture seamlessly and producing exceptional results. Or, maybe you were in a rush to fill seats and let bad seeds slip through without proper vetting
Sales slumps happen. They are guaranteed to hit and, when they do, they put intense pressure on your team to perform. You, as a sales manager, should be prepared to lead your team out of the doldrums effectively and efficiently.
We've identified 6 things exemplary sales managers do to drag teams from the muck. There's no perfect solution to sales slumps, but these techniques will help mitigate damage and keep your staff afloat through the toughest times.
Identify and address problem
A new survey from Sandler Training put the red pen in the hands of American employees, giving them chance to "grade" the performance of their manager. The results were passing, but not exactly good enough for the refrigerator.
All good things must come to an end, especially in the world of sales and staffing. Whether all-star performers are leaving for retirement reasons or new opportunities on the horizon, the thought of finding someone who will deliver the same results and fit in the culture can seem daunting. Rest assured though, it's not impossible. With some planning and putting a few processes in place, you'll be well positioned to celebrate the departing team members and welcome the new ones.
It's a fast-paced world and today's salesperson needs to be one step ahead of the prospect and working as efficiently as possible. In addition, we're more connected than ever and clients and prospects expect quick turnaround times and faster response rates.
While it may seem like there aren't enough hours in the day, there are more than enough apps available to us to help us manage our time, stay on task and find even greater success.
Here are a few free apps that Sandler Training's associates and clients use often in their everyday life
Imagine a business is like a rock band. And every business has a drum rhythm at which it operates. The drumbeat is consistent, dependable, and stable.The most beautiful music is made when all the instruments play in harmony to the drum's rhythm. It's not always easy.
Playing the role of the interviewer is no simple task. While you might not be the one in the hot seat, the words that come out of your mouth can be equally as important. There are interview techniques that some of the best recruiters and HR professionals utilize when looking to fill positions with the most qualified candidates.
Encourage the candidate to think differently and creatively when they're interviewing. For many candidates going through the job search process, interviews become monotonous. Interviewers need to go against the grain to truly get to know a candidate.
Nothing lasts forever, right? While it may seem pessimistic, having a plan for dealing with a client's departure is sound advice when it comes to maintaining business and clients. We spend so much time building solid, trusting relationships with clients that it can come as quite a blow when news hits that your client contact announces they're leaving their current position.
The question is a bit of a puzzle. Ideally, there would be a reference book that lists, by industry, how much time you should invest in prospecting activities. Unfortunately, there's no reference book.
How much time you invest will depend on the number of prospecting activities you plan, the nature of the activities, and the intended results of the activities
As a manager, executive or owner, the only valuable you possess is your time. To successfully manage your time and grow your business, ask yourself the following question daily: "Does 'it' advance my business?" ("It," being whatever activity you are doing or about to start.)
Let's take a look at several examples, which might resonate with you.
Activity – Understanding your direct reports' personal goals
Does it advance my business? Absolutely
A mistake too many salespeople make is not keeping in touch with former clients. It's not uncommon for past clients to come to a point where they need your product or service again but don't remember how to get in touch with you. They are more likely to have your competitors' information handy. (Your competitors are still calling on your client even though you are not).
We consistently have organizations coming to us for help with hiring the right talent. Over the years we've learned some pretty important lessons around interviewing sales people. Here are three common interview pitfalls you should try to avoid. Mistake 1: Interviewing the resume
Here's a quick acid test of your hiring-to-turnover ratio. How often are one of these phrases heard in your company?
- I'm not a micro-manager.
- I hired them to...
- They know what they're supposed to do...
If our business world was homogenous then those phrases would be correct because every sales job would be exactly like every other sales job. Every expense filing procedure would be exactly the same at every company and every role would have exactly the same weekly behavior expectations
As a manager, your most valuable asset is your time.
In Part 1 of "An Alternative to Traditional Performance Management" you learned how to get time back in your week by implementing a 3-part performance management system: funnel management, a weekly behavior plan (a.k.a., "cookbook") and a personalized development plan.
In Part 2, you'll learn a system for reducing your time spent on, and your team's anxiety about, their performance review
Like a coach in pro sports, your primary function as a manager is to improve the performance of your team.
Unfortunately, traditional approaches to performance management may have initial success, but are difficult to sustain.
When distilled out of their packaging traditional performance management looks like
I love small businesses and their owners. I spend much of my day marveling at the great accomplishments of this hearty bunch of entrepreneurs who pursue their dream and formulate the backbone of our business society. They are the lifeblood of this country. there is a soft spot in my heart for the struggles they endure as well as the challenges they must overcome to succeed.
Spend some time in the psychology or self-help section in any bookstore and you'll find hundreds of books written on transforming troubled relationships. Whether husband/wife, parent/child, friend/friend or employer/employee, they dominate the shelves promising THE magical solution to resolving any issue imaginable.
If you're in sales, what about the buyer/seller relationship? The same elements that make any relationship thrive also apply to developing and strengthening bonds with our prospects and customers
Recently I was working with a company's executive team in reviewing the progress we had made together in solving a longstanding, difficult problem that had stunted their growth for years and slowed their momentum. It was rewarding to see their excitement as we reviewed the results of our efforts together. It was a good team meeting and an encouraging feeling to share our successes. I should have left well enough alone, yet I recognized that the true learning and best growth had not gone far enough. I posed three follow-up questions:
I don't like emails!
Thought I'd get that out on the front end so there's no mystery as to where I am heading. Now you're wondering what in the world has happened. What did he do wrong? What caused such a negative reaction to something as simple, routine and harmless as email
Today's business is focusing on something that champion athletes have always known: the right combination of training and coaching will help achieve greatness. It's not enough to have a superior product or service. You must have the skills to get that message across to your prospects. Training imparts the knowledge critical for success in today's competitive economy.
As a sales trainer with Sandler Training, I spend a lot of time talking to my clients and I get paid to work with them in four areas of their business: Strategy, Structure, Staff and Skills. Because I spend hours talking to them, I learn quite a bit. And despite that fact, they still manage to surprise me with the questions they ask me.
With the great economic storm over the last year, many businesses wisely pulled back into safe harbors for a period of time. In fact, those that failed to make adjustments and continued their course were likely wiped out or at least seriously damaged. Unwise use of credit and perhaps a bit of bad luck has taken its toll on many. However, perhaps you are one of those businesses that made the proper course corrections by making the difficult and sometime painful choices.
Small business owners tend to stay small because they do not install systems and processes into their business. Most owners want to hire "experienced" sales people. The mentality is to hire someone, teach them about their products and services, then expect the person to "go sell". What's the problem? If we hire experienced sales people, once they learn the product or service, they should be good to go, right?
It's March Madness time, which I enjoy, but not always for the same reasons my friends do. Because I'm in sales, it's fun just to watch the teams execute their strategies and then try to figure out how these strategies apply to my own profession.
And what stands out, season after season, is how predictable the plays have become and how easily they can be countered