As managers, we want to get everything we can out of our sales team. The harder they work, the more they will deliver, right? What if we looked at our sales teams differently? What if we asked instead, "What can we do to see results and stay on target, while keeping our team happy and ready to take on more?"
Thinking back, what classes did you look forward to in school? Which did you not look forward to? Those you loved, you spent more time preparing for, and they helped you develop your interests. Those that were not of interest, you did what you needed to in order to get through. The same concepts apply to our jobs. We are happier when we work in areas where we thrive.
Think about each person on your team. Grab some paper and a pen. Write down what you think each person does best. What are their talents? What are they naturally good at doing? How do you uncover their talents?
1. Watch them. What do they accomplish quickly or really enjoy doing? Is it engaging with a client? Is it the hunt and the close? Is it uncovering and finding solutions?
2. Ask them! So simple, but so often not something we do as managers. Perform an Individualized Management Questionnaire to find out their hot buttons and interests.
3. Have them complete a standardized talent interview, like the Sales Talent Interview. These interviews give you a window into someone’s true sales talents and allow you to manage to those strengths.
Let your salespeople focus on what they do well, and they will continue to excel in those things. In Soar with Your Strengths by Donald O Clifton and Paula Nelson, the concept is to identify what you do well and do it often. If we concentrate on our true talents and strengths, it will allow us to grow and to burn stronger, not to burn out.