People says a sales team is the face of a business, but really, it’s also the spine, the central nervous system, and the heart. Without a strong sales team, your business will become stagnant and eventually begin to dwindle. If your team can’t make connections and bring home deals, you may as well close up shop.
But it’s not every day that you come across a truly strong and persuasive sales team. You can’t rely on just one person to hold the team together – everyone from the BDM down to the latest hire needs to be on top of their game. So how does an HR representative manage to pull together such an all-star team?
Before you put your stellar sales team together, have a clear aim of what you want them to achieve and how. Outline the steps to a successful sale and devise a strategy to how you are going to achieve that. With this in place you can calculate which team members you need at certain points of the ladder. Then decide on the roles and responsibilities of each person, and the particular traits you are looking for.
Diversify the roles
If you are building a team, you need to think a little bit like a sports coach. Not everyone needs to be performing the same roles; some excel at scoring the goals whereas others are great at providing opportunities. There is no point hiring 11 goal scorers in your team if there is nobody to set up the situation to allow them to make the attempt.
This works in sales too. Try not to put round pegs into square holes, but hire the right person for the right position. If someone is great at making appointments but poor at closure, use their strengths to provide your closing salesperson an opportunity to do what they are good at. If you have too many cooks and not enough waitors they will all be vying for the same role.
The inner you
Regardless of their individual role within your sales team, everybody has to share common traits. All of them must be team players and be prepared to work with others towards a common goal.
They must have genuine honesty and care about the products as well as the customers they are serving. Selling to the wrong person will result in refunds, complaints and a bad reputation. Integrity in how they deal with everyone they come into contact with is always high up on the list. Possessing good judgement is also essential, as they will need to be able to make quick calls without consulting upper management every time.
A strong work ethic is a must; this is not just about working all the hours available, but about getting the most out of every hour to work efficiently and productively. When needed, they must be prepared to go the extra mile and not lay down their tools the moment the clock clicks over to 5pm.
As well as these traits they need to be passionate, motivated and with a genuine will to win and achieve goals. They must flourish on challenges and not get bogged down with negativity. Being open to ideas is important, and a willingness to learn and change if something is not working.
Back to school
It doesn’t matter how good your team is, if you do a poor job of training them in your systems, products and technology, they will struggle to reach all-star levels. It maybe you have chosen to opt for a clean slate with tons of potential; how they develop is down to your training program and the quality of your trainers.
Hiring and putting together a great sales team takes thought and energy, with a degree of long-term planning. However, the sales team is often at the centre of productivity, so investing the time in the beginning to build your all-star sales team will score you goals long into the future.
Photo: https://www.flickr.com/photos/124961070@N02/ CC BY-ND 2.0