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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Managing Highly Talented Salespeople – Is It Worth the Trouble?


After years of coaching salespeople, I firmly believe that those with extreme talent are much more challenging to coach! As a manager, are you willing to put in the time and effort to coach a talented candidate to greatness?

It’s not easy. But is it worth it?

When looking at this question in the context of sports, it becomes much clearer. Think about a sports team recruiting for new talent. Do they pass on the most gifted and talented players because they may be too much work or take too much time to train? Do coaches settle for the mediocre or average players because it makes their job “easier”? Of course not!  

People who are highly talented can actually require more attention and work to manage, but the payoff when that time and energy is invested in that person is well worth it. That same lesson applies to sales coaching.

Your goal is to build the most succesful team.

The best coaches don’t recruit the most talented players and then leave them to their own devices assuming that because they’re talented they don’t need any additional training or support. Quite the opposite! In order to build the strongest, most successful team, coaches scout the most talented players and then invest time and focus their energy on coaching those players, training them to use and grow those natural abilities so that they are enhanced and therefore better utilized for success. They put them on an enhanced training regimen, they spend time watching them perform, and they provide ongoing coaching and support.

The best sales managers understand that the most talented people on their team should receive the majority of their time and attention. Don’t spend too much of your valuable time coaching a player on your team who does not have the natural abilities to be a superstar performer. Think about the people on your team who have the most potential, the most natural talent and ability, and spend a majority of your time investing in their growth. The payoff will make that time and energy invested well worth it!

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Topics: Talent Sales coaching