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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Do You Onboard New Sellers Like The Cleveland Browns Onboard New Quarterbacks?

footballAs I’ve mentioned before in previous blog posts, I’m a long-suffering fan of the Cleveland Browns. My team loses more games than they win. The Browns are also infamous for something else: the team has started 28 different quarterbacks since 1999! Many of these poor souls were drafted by the Browns and then thrown into the fire before they were adequately prepared, only to fail. 

Topics: sales management sales training onboarding

The Best New Hire Gift: Clear Expectations + Realistic Goals

new hire expectations and goals for onboardingWhen onboarding new hires, managers have a lot of things to think about. What is the onboarding plan? Will there be pre-boardingWho will train them? Who do they need to meet and who will show them around and introduce them to the office, co-workers, etc.?

But just as important, what is your new hire’s onboarding plan? If they walk in and have no plan and no goals, chances are they will struggle to find success in their new role. Some new hires will start day one with a clear plan or will have a plan and goals set within a few weeks, but some will need help and guidance in this area.

The Best New Hire Gift: Clear Expectations + Realistic Goals

Topics: sales management Talent training sales training onboarding

4 Habits of Highly Successful Sales Managers Who Retain Their Top Performers

habits of highly successful sales managers retain top performersSCENARIO: For the first time in a long time, you have sales positions open, but the most talented salespeople likely are already employed elsewhere. 

Well, this scenario is one managers often find themselves in. Even the most successful sales managers can find themselves in this situation if they aren't intentional with their management practices and focused on retention. Recruiting and filling your talent bank is important. Even so, don't lose focus on the effort it takes to retain top talent. There’s always a strain on your resources when you try to scramble to fill a vacant sales position, but it’s a double-whammy when the vacancy is left by your superstar performer. 

4 Habits of Highly Successful Sales Managers Who Retain Their Top Performers

Here are four things that highly successful sales managers consistently spend time and intentional energy on to retain their top performers.

Topics: employee retention Management sales performance sales management Talent sales training

Feedback. Feedback. Feedback. (Today, We're Talking About Feedback.)

sales coaching feedbackPeople crave feedback. We want to know if what we are doing is good, bad, or just plain ugly.

It starts when we are little kids. We all desperately wanted our parent's attention. We wanted them to "watch us" run fast, jump high, or sing a song. We wanted them to be proud of us, but also to give us feedback. Were we doing it "right?" How can we do it better? 

Well, not much has changed since we were children. We still want to know how we are doing. Yet, so many managers seem to think that their people don't need feedback or even want it. WRONG! Your people desperately want to know how they are doing. Feedback is a fantastic way for a sales manager to improve their team's sales performance by reinforcing good behaviors and improving upon weak behaviors.

Topics: sales performance sales management sales training coaching

The Secret to Sales Success (It's Not Enough to Hire Talented People)

building relationships for sales successAbout a year ago I conducted a sales talent assessment for an up-and-coming college graduate who had very little sales experience but was loaded with both raw talent and a passion for sales. We’ll call her Ashley. The hiring manager, let’s go with Brenda, was thrilled to be able to get someone with such potential “on the cheap,” so she made her an offer right away, which Ashley quickly accepted. 

Topics: Management sales management sales training coaching onboarding

5 Movies that Teach Us about Talent Development

sales strategy lessons from moviesToday, we are taking our sales strategy lessons from the pages of pop culture, and we're talking movies. Grab your popcorn and find a comfy seat, because we’re heading to the movies!

Topics: Management sales performance sales management Talent Sales sales training coaching

Object This! Ways to Overcome 5 Common Sales Objections

overcoming sales objectionsEven when you are intentional about removing surprises and skilled at talking about price, you may still encounter objections during the sales process. Listening for objections along the way and handling each one as it comes up helps you avoid trying to address all the objections while you are presenting your proposal.

Topics: Proposal Needs Analysis salespeople sales process sales training prospecting

In A New Business Slump? Try Getting the Rats Out of Your Head!

new business sales slumpI was recently working with a group of sales managers on helping their sales teams develop more high-potential accounts. After listening to some of the challenges they feel their salespeople are faced with day-to-day, I added, "They need to get the rats out of their head!" One sales manager looked at me inquisitively and questioned, "The rats out their head?" So let me explain...

In our fast-paced sales environment, it's easy to let distractions get in the way. These distractions can sometimes hurt our sales performance and almost always get in the way of developing high-potential accounts. Then it's a domino effect... so many issues feel as if they need to be addressed immediately and almost always end up taking the place of the productive new business development activities that you know will help you improve performance. It gnaws at you and feels as if you can't get away from it - like rats, invading your space and eating up your time.

I have felt this way myself many times. A single working mom with three kids with an active career built on helping others improve sales performance is a constant juggle, and sometimes, I too let rats get in my head. Here's how I quickly re-group and get back on track:

Topics: business development new business development sales performance sales management salespeople sales training

3 Reasons You need an Annual Physical

annual sales checkupNo one likes going to the doctor. No one!
Topics: sales strategy sales performance sales culture sales training sales diagnostic

Failing To Do This One Action Stalled The Sale

stalled sales processI vividly remember early in my sales career meeting with a business owner of an up-and-coming beverage company. We met several times, and I was getting excited about the opportunities that seemed to be unfolding. We had built great rapport, he had shared his challenges with me, and I developed a solution that I thought was perfect. He loved my idea! We were on our way until I heard…

Topics: sales management Sales salespeople sales process sales training prospecting