The top-performing sales managers in business are on top because they are continually finding ways to make their team produce even more. The number one way to do that is by providing effective feedback to their employees.
Almost every sales organization has their highest performers who are needed even more after they reach their goals, their average performers that are “make or break” depending on the month, and the low performers who are a drag on achievement. There is an important technique that can give you a big boost with all of the above: Feedback.
Feedback for Various Types of Sales Performance
They are all too often left totally alone. Let them hear your wildest dreams of what you believe they are capable of. Paint a picture based on what they do so well. Let them know exactly what you admire about them, enable them to do more of it. Put a challenge in front of them, give an incentive if when they achieve it and lots of praise and recognition. These are your thoroughbreds, and they love to win, get better, and win some more. We should all spend more time here.
If their performance is hit and miss, clearly tell them what you see in them when they are winning. Help them develop a plan focused on what they do the best. If you hit on the right evaluation, they will gladly give you more of it. Few people are masters of everything. The average performers can become great just by cutting out the things they aren’t good at doing and focusing on what they do well. By the way, this works for everyone.
If you are keeping them, they must have some real potential. What is it? Do they know why you hired them? Tell them what you believe their potential is based on what you see in their performance. What is it that you see in them that makes you keep them? Maybe a good question here would be “what do you wish you could do less of” and decide whether you can do without it or work-around it. Sometimes, people who aren’t achieving will spend more time looking busy than being busy. Healthy feedback can initiate a fresh start to success, but it needs to be based on what they are good at in order to succeed.
- It must be frequent to be real.
- Filter your thoughts to their talents and strengths, not their weaknesses.
- Make it functional. You want specific behaviors that make your team successful, so highlight the behaviors that you want more of.
- Keep it positive. You gain a lot more productivity by highlighting the positive attributes that you want more of.
- Is there a big challenge that you need to achieve coming up? Use feedback to provide a jumpstart for important initiatives.
- Make it specific. The more precise the message, the better the feedback works.
- Be consistent. Employees crave consistency. Develop a routine to celebrate behaviors, have private conversations, send an email, or whatever fits you best. Just pick something you can stick to.
- Be sincere. Let’s face it. We can smell hype or fake news in an instant. So can your people. If they sense you don’t believe what you are saying, you could be destructive.
Feedback is a vital source to fueling your team, no matter what type of sales performance they are currently delivering. Don't miss an opportunity to improve your team's sales performance, at any level, with effective feedback by using these techniques.