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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

How to Know What Type of Salespeople You Have and How to Manage Talents

How to Know What Type of Salespeople You Have and How to Manage Talents

Do you ever wonder if you could be getting more out of your sales team? What if you could better understand their strengths and weaknesses and coach them to reach their full potential?

Understanding the talents of each person on your team and coaching to these talents allows you to grow the individual and the organization.

But how can you tell how a person is wired and what their natural talents are?

Some talents are easier to see than others. It’s easy to see the talents of an athlete, musician, or writer but sales talents are not always easy to see. Here are a few tips for identifying and coaching talents.

How the Best Managers Identify and Develop Top Talent

1. Use a Validated Talent Assessment

There are many benefits to using a role-specific, accurate talent assessment. This helps you hire more talented people who are the right fit for the role and better understand their talents to coach and develop them.

If you don’t have access to a talent assessment, observe each person on your team. Notice what they do consistently well. When someone grows quickly in an area, enjoys practicing it, and is drawn to it, it’s usually a sign of a talent.

2. Focus on Strengths and Work Around Weaknesses

Allow your sellers to focus the majority of their time on their strengths, and don’t drive yourself crazy trying to fix weaknesses. If a weakness is getting in the way of their success, then help them put a workaround in place by leaning on a strength. If you spend time practicing in an area of strength, you will grow 10Xs, but if you spend time practicing in an area of weakness, you will only grow about 10%.

Once you uncover their innate talents, create coaching strategies to help each person maximize strengths and work around weaknesses.

Here are a few coaching strategy examples:

Let’s say you’re coaching a seller with the talent to uncover needs and create customized solutions for clients. They’re also great at influencing clients to go with their solutions, but they have a weakness that makes it difficult for them to overcome objections to get initial meetings with clients.

  • An idea to maximize their strength: coach them to be the very best at discovery meetings, asking great questions to uncover opportunities and solve multiple problems for clients.

  • An idea to workaround their weakness: practice and role play overcoming objections with them to boost their confidence and help them find creative ways to get meetings, like asking for referrals or using a client success story.

Let’s say you’re coaching another seller who is highly competitive, never gives up, and loves to win business but they also hate losing and struggle to bounce back when dealing with rejection or disappointment.

  • An idea to maximize their strength: create competition for them by setting measurable goals, providing lots of ways to win, and letting them know how you are keeping score. 

  • An idea to workaround their weakness: help them deal with disappointment by discussing what they can learn from it and then quickly resetting the goal. The best remedy for a loss is another win.

3. Provide People with Feedback on Their Top Talents

Schedule time to discuss each person’s top talents with them, so they can create a plan to grow their strengths as well. Think about and discuss their talents when you teach them, give them feedback, delegate to them and motivate them.

These steps will help you develop your team and create a talent-focused organization.

Coaching Sales Talent eBook

Topics: sales talent sales coaching