You’ve hired the perfect sales professional. This AE is eager, jumped right in, and you know they are going to be a rockstar. Now what? How can you help your rockstar reach their full potential?
Sales coaching really is an art form. Intuitively knowing what your sales professionals need to maximize their growth doesn’t just happen. It takes a step-by-step coaching plan that is well-thought-out ahead of each new hire and that is continued throughout your employees' careers. A lot of work? Sure, but it’s well worth it. So let’s get started.
Prior to hiring, you hopefully ordered an assessment that told you what your candidates strengths and talents for sales are. If you did, then you chatted with a Talent Analyst to find out how to coach this person effectively. Now you need to use that information to develop your management plan for each of your team members.
Using the notes you took during your talent feedback call, set up your priority strategies. These may be as simple as remembering to give specific praise each day to those who thrive on recognition. Or finding a filing system to help them stay organized. Whatever your sales coaching strategies are, set up some reminders so you won’t forget. Having a basic plan in place, with reminders to follow though, will get your employees started off right.
For more onboarding tips, take the Effective Onboarding course.
As soon as possible after an employee starts, and once a year for your current staff, do an Individualized Management Questionnaire. This will give you an in-depth view of how your staff likes to be coached, rewarded, informed and invested in. Does this person love competition? Make sure you have contests and ways for them to measure against others. Are they constantly competing against themselves and their best? Find ways for them to measure their progress and beat last months or last year’s goal. When you take an informed interest in each of your employees, they will notice. And they will strive to meet and exceed your expectations, because you have already exceeded theirs.
And now that you have all this great insight into your AE, use this for in-field coaching. Before you spend the day going on calls, look over their assessment, coaching notes and IMQ. Are they great at prospecting, getting that first appointment, and building the relationship, but shaky with closing? Or do they have great energy and move the sale forward, but tend to miss the little details? Have some specific strategies in mind that will help them work around possible problem areas. More important, also be on the lookout for their strengths and praise, praise, praise. Remember that ratio of five positive comments to one constructive criticism. This is also a great time to build your relationship. Know their favorite lunch spot (even if you have to ask their work bestie) and treat them. Or grab their favorite coffee and pastry to start off the day.
Show them you care and are invested in their success, and they will be happy and excited to come to work each day. And that excitement translates to added productivity and a great work environment.