The job of a sales leader is probably the toughest in today’s business world. This is because it involves a lot of responsibilities. You need to be a supper seller first, a great strategist, and last but not least, a businessman. The following key features are meant to coach people about the true definition of leadership.
Creating functional success metrics meant to spot progress, not just deliver results
Most jobs related to leadership demand a number of metrics that point out achieved results. Profit contributions and revenue are simple examples of these important measures. However, there’s more to the metrics scale than meets the eye. It includes measures set to indicate progress towards specific goals such as implementing planning meetings, and successful sales. The main difference is to create a balance between sales leaders who lack direction and leaders who are influential by nature. It’s vital for business to have both.
Offering visionary leadership
A lot of people think sales leaders are cynical. The truth is lawyers and accountants can be cynical as well. Hence, it’s important to offer definitive and clear leadership guidance. Considering that a lot of organizations are used as the nosecone of a business, as product, customer or services issues influence them first, they can greatly benefit from enclosing a vision for the whole team. A sales leader should set an example for that vision because the team is watching.
Developing coach and talent relentlessly
Not all leaders are great coaches, and to be honest if you can’t teach how can you be called a leader? Rather than boost sales sporadically, a leader’s goal should be to help the business thrive through the efforts of their employees. A productive team has a good leader behind who must know how to coach his people and help them grow professionally.
Paying attention to selling roles, and understanding the selling process
Sales leaders are split in 4 main types: the model – runs the calls, observer – observation skills with the purpose to teach, teammate – the engager who gets involved in the selling process, and the strategist – provides post-call support and pre-call planning management. Each and every single of these leadership roles in sales has the unique purpose to make an impact. Therefore, it’s extremely important for the sales leaders to clearly express their role and support as much as they can the development of their business.
Focusing on the value of the sales process
A lot of people consider that success in the sales business is not about the selling, but about the way that selling is performed. Simply put, it’s about the ‘how’ not the ‘what’. The ‘how’ manages to create value for the selling process, and therefore sales leaders can easily engineer customer experience to make it worth the money. The pinnacle of value creation is a sale worth paying for. Rather than a simple description of a service or product, a sale’s value is far more important because it highlights ideas to solve problems, new approaches, and brand new opportunities.
Predicting the buyer’s position
Sales leaders have the tendency to forget the buyer’s position and that’s why they’re mediocre. Rather than focus on making money fast, they should pay more attention to their customers. A great sales leader understands a buyer’s behavior. Coaching their team about forecasting is an excellent strategy. We can easily say that the sales market is like a poker game. You’ve got to learn how to read your opponent in order to guess what he will do first.
Motivating with rewards and recognition
Great sales leadership is not something that can be taught over night. To be an excellent coach it’s critical to appreciate your peers because in the end the student becomes the teacher. Recognition and rewards must be relevant as it will reinforce behavior and boost confidence. Try to motivate your team as much as you can by telling them some of your secrets. Don’t be the boss that screams all day long, be the teacher that’s constantly looking to improve their skills and make them professionals.
As great leader must also be a great coach. The sales business must be understood first and practiced afterwards. Don’t allow your students to become greedy and annoying and teach them to close sales the smart way.
Photo Credit: Flickr/The Natural Step Canada