Do you feel you are getting the best results from your sales team? If you could do one simple thing to get better results and win more time back to focus on your own job…would you do it?
How is your team performing, and who is getting the most attention? Do poor performers see you most? How do you ensure your peak performers remain at their peak? How do you nurture high potential talent, and how do you get your plateaued people back on track? Sharing your time equally and keeping an eye on the long term goals means something is likely to give.
Performance in a competitive sales environment is often managed by carrot and stick. Setting individual sales targets can create a culture which encourages too much self-interest, which for team work is like oil and water. Why not change tack completely and develop a team coaching approach? Shift the focus from competing to collaborating, by setting targets for which the whole team rather than individuals are accountable. Implementing an effective team coaching culture does not mean poor performers can hide behind the best performers, quite the reverse. It creates a culture where the team work together to build skills and abilities, creates a culture where team members are held accountable by each other and are motivated to work together to achieve results for the team.
Team Coaching: 3 Steps to success
1. Creating a Blueprint
At your next all team meeting, get your team to focus on the following:
P – Have a clear purpose for the team, and make sure that everyone signs up to it?
A – Create mutual accountability for achieving the team goals.
R – Ensure there is clarity around individual roles and responsibilities
C – Develop the commitment to grow and perform together as a team.
S – Understand the team skills and strengths, and consider how team members can coach each other to peak performance.
2. Develop your team climate
- Emphasise that sales targets are a team not individual achievement. Ensure these are regularly reviewed and updated
- Team members must support one another by sharing best practice, knowledge and experience
- Ensure everyone focuses on maintaining engagement and motivation and notices when it is dropping off
- Create some rules for engaging and working together, and keep this visible at all times
3. Have a solid communication plan
Spend time to develop your plan, and engage the team, remembering to involve remote team members. Team coaching done well sees issues dealt with in the moment, rather than saving them up for the next team meeting. This will make your sales meetings effective and time-efficient. You can use valuable time together to innovate, engage different stake
holders, recognise team achievements, and develop future strategy. Encourage a climate where the focus is always on positive conversations that foster mutual respect and trust.
Team coaching will have a positive impact on your team’s image both internally and externally, which in turn will lead to even better results.
By Pam Jones, Program Director Ashridge Executive Education, Hult International Business School; Vicki Holton Senior Research Fellow Ashridge Executive Education, Hult International Business School; and Angela Jowitt Director of Dolphin Team Development and Asssociate of Ashridge Executive Education, Hult International Business School. Authors of 'How to coach your team: release team potential and hit peak performance' published by Pearson, priced £19.99.