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Achieving Sales Team Excellence: The Impact of Supportive Beliefs

Posted by Jeni Wehrmeyer on Fri, Dec 08, 2023

This is what it takes to be successful at building and achieving sales team excellence: You must love coaching and the game of selling. You must thrive on developing others to be the best versions of themselves. It must be about helping others gain the spotlight, success and financial rewards or a job well done.  It requires sacrificing ego and the need to be right for the other person to discover their path, develop their skills and become the expert.

There are assessments in the marketplace to help people identify if they have what it takes. We use Objective Management Group’s (OMG) Sales Manager Evaluation. Three key findings are identified and scored:

  1. The Will to be Successful specifically in the role of manager or sales leader
  2. The Sales Manager DNA
  3. The Sales Manager Competencies

In this series, we will break down several of these 3 findings to help sales managers zero in on what might be preventing you from achieving sales team excellence.

The Impact of Supportive Beliefs

OMG's research has found that high self-awareness is especially important for sales managers. Self-awareness helps you better understand the belief systems that you are consciously or unconsciously bringing into interactions with your salespeople or any customers you directly interface with. It also helps you understand how you might interpret a salesperson or client's response to you. Below we've listed 7 Self-Limiting Beliefs that could be preventing you from achieving sales team success, along with the corresponding Supportive Beliefs that you can develop with training and coaching.

Self-Limiting Belief: I don't need to manage my salespeople's daily activity
Supportive Belief: It is my job to manage my salespeople's daily activity

Self-Limiting Belief: I don't need to know what motivates my salespeople
Supportive Belief:  It is important to understand my salespeople's personal goals and financial needs

Self-Limiting Belief: I don't need to upgrade the sales force
Supportive Belief: It is important to regularly recruit new salespeople

Self-Limiting Belief: Raising my people's self-esteem is not a high priority
Supportive Belief: I must encourage my salespeople to get the most from them

Self-Limiting Belief: Prospects that need time to think before making a decision will eventually buy from us
Supportive Belief: Prospects that need time to think before making a decision will not end up doing business with us

Self-Limiting Belief: My salespeople need to make presentations
Supportive Belief: My salespeople should make presentations to fully qualified prospects and only when necessary

Self-Limiting Belief: I don't need a strong relationship with my prospects in order to sell them
Supportive Belief: I am able to quickly develop strong rapport with prospects

As you review and reflect on these 7 beliefs, how do you score on each?  What can you and will you do differently to change your coaching behavior and skill levels?  In our world today with the many digital and AI-programmed interactions, we have entered into a new reality when it comes to achieving sales team success. In order to stay ahead of the competition, companies need sales managers or coaches with supportive belief systems who can track each individual’s sales activities, coach, and hold them accountable to behaviors that will sustain and grow revenue.

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Topics: Sales Training, motivating sales people, banking sales training, sales training tips, sales team motivation, sales coaching best practices, how coaching drives sales growth

Motivating Your Sales Team: A Guide for Sales Leaders

Posted by Jeni Wehrmeyer on Fri, Dec 01, 2023

There are two sides to this topic of motivation. One side is how are your salespeople motivated and what motivates them.  The second side is how effective are you as a sales leader at motivating your sales team? Both must be addressed to fully understand this topic of motivation and the impact on sales results.

Qualities of a Motivational Sales Leader

Certainly, understanding who you are hiring from the start is essential in having a team that is motivated to reach their sales goals. As a part of the hiring process, leaders must consistently use an assessment, preferably a sales-specific assessment, to identify if candidates are motivated, can sell, and will sell. We all understand that motivation is primarily an internal quality driven by personal factors of having goals, the desire to achieve, compete, and excel. However, there are also certain qualities that leaders must have to uncover and ignite the flame of those they motivate.

Drawing from Objective Management Group’s sales manager assessment, our partner and the pioneer of the sales assessment industry, we know that these are the characteristics of leaders who are effective motivators:

  • Know what motivates people
  • Have a strong self image
  • Give recognition
  • Do not accept mediocrity

Orange Cycle Diagram

Sales Leaders Must Know What Motivates Their People

When we first started evaluating sales teams 25 years ago – the findings told us that people were externally motivated. Motivation was money and the things money can provide. The current findings tell us that sales teams are highly motivated to succeed, but the source of motivation is internal rather than external. They are more motivated by a job well done, taking care of, and being a guide for their clients. They want to be recognized for success and they are motivated by achieving their own personal standards for success and achievement. As a sales leader, it is your job to find out what motivates your people and then you can have the appropriate discussions to keep them on track.

Sales Leaders Must Have a Strong Self Image

Much like salespeople, leaders must be internally motivated to develop and help others. This is often a problem when a leader is promoted from a sales position due to their success at driving sales and revenue into a sales leadership role in which the focus is achieving success through others. Some can make that transition and others do not. Leaders with a strong self image will spend time developing their own skills through the many resources available today from training and online as well as books and podcasts.

Another way to improve self-image and success as a leader motivating a sales team is to implement management practices that allow you to understand the activities and behaviors for potential coaching opportunities. A strong sales leader will hold regular sales huddles focused on the most critical activities that drive success, such as appointments and proposals.  They will have regular monthly sales meetings to help their team sharpen their saw, improve and learn from each other. Probably most importantly, sales leaders will implement a process to uncover personal and professional goals of their sales team so they can understand what motivates them. Implementing these activities helps sales leader become more effective in their role as a sales motivator and will improve their self-image and success.

Motivating Your Team with Regular Recognition (and Feedback to Improve)

Many, but not all salespeople thrive on winning, positive feedback, and recognition, so this is a given for effective sales leaders. Find opportunities to recognize the efforts, behaviors, and success of your team members, whether it is one-on-one or in a group setting. Leader boards, celebrating wins, and giving rewards are all motivating factors.

But what about the other end of the stick?  An effective sales leader must be focused on motivating a salesperson who is going off track, not doing the behaviors needed or agreed upon for reaching their sales goals. To motivate a sales team, leaders must have practices and processes in place to catch lagging behaviors quickly before they become a real problem. Coaching and motivating are very closely related. If a sales leader can help identify what is getting in the way of a salesperson attaining more appointments and can coach them to improvement, that can be very motivating for a salesperson.

Strong Sales Leaders Do Not Accept Mediocrity

Most leaders will tell you that they do not accept mediocrity however if you review their stack ranking, they have and keep low performers. Every company has a lowest performer. But what can a sales leader do to improve performance overall so that each year, that lowest performer is better than before?

We coach organizations and leaders to Set the Bar for Success by:

  • Clearly establishing and communicating what it means to be successful in the organization.
  • Have systems and processes in place to catch failure before failure happens rather than when it actually happens. Failure never happens all at once.
  • Track the improvement of performance quintiles year over year. When you take the snapshot next year, the numbers for each quintile have to be better than the previous year.
  • Establish a culture and commitment to set the bar higher for success and then hold people accountable to actually doing the behaviors required to be successful.

Motivating a sales team to success is no easy achievement. It takes consistent and persistent behaviors. Strong sales managers do not worry about being liked by their salespeople. They achieve success when their salespeople become more effective and successful.

Need Help?  Check Out Our Sales Growth  Coaching Program for Managers!



Topics: Sales Training, motivating sales people, banking sales training, sales training tips, sales team motivation, sales coaching best practices, how coaching drives sales growth

Deepening Relationships with Transformative Branch Conversations

Posted by Jeni Wehrmeyer on Fri, Aug 25, 2023

Some would say that these are unprecedented times in banking. Perhaps the individuals most impacted, and possibly most unprepared, are retail bankers, at the frontline of client changing preferences, digital options and increasing expectations. For a banking leader, it is an important time to have a strong focus on sales team motivation. Here are a few things we would recommend to help your frontline retail banking team continue to grow and deepen current client relationships.

Building Trust: Unfortunately, bank customer trends show a decrease in trust and satisfaction, while service expectations continue to rise. That may not apply to your bank but we do know that younger demographics represent a challenge as they consider expanding digital offerings. Leaders must put their focus on helping retail branches excel at deepening customer relationships by sharpening their skills of asking questions, listening, becoming a guide and a trusted advisor. All of these begin with empathy in sales, putting the focus on the client and working as a guide to help them uncover and achieve their financial goals. Do your frontline people have the skills and yes, the courage and desire, to expand into more meaningful conversations with clients? This all hinges on your sales team’s motivation to be different and memorable and have empathy in their selling approach. Do they care enough to ask the tough questions, listen closely and build that essential trust factor?

Managing Change: There has been a seismic shift in the community bank space this year and one of those shifts seems to be less of an interest in driving new clients through commercial loans and more of an interest in deepening current client relationships in the branch. To accomplish this, leaders must be ready to coach their bankers on a new, transformative approach to initiating distinctive conversations with their clients and prospects, building trust through meaningful relationships. What is at the heart of this approach? It is important to have a relationship building (sales) process to teach, coach and inspect. Not only does this give you a system to better understand how your team is motivated, it gives your frontline bankers a step-by-step process to follow to deepen their relationships. Following a stage-based process is one of the hallmarks of top relationship building bankers. Some may think of it as an art skill, however, there is also a science to becoming a trusted advisor, including ‘owning’ and being skillful at asking the right questions and guiding the client to make good financial decisions.

Now is an important time to take a look at your current people, how they are approaching their customer interactions and if they can transition to a more consultative role. An important component of deepening relationships will be the motivation and ability to be effective at outreach, calling current clients and initiating the conversation with thoughtful, caring, empathetic questions. This is a time to focus on questioning and listening skills, not product solutions.

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Topics: Sales Training, banking sales training, sales training tips, empathy in sales, sales team motivation


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    About our Blog

    Anthony Cole Training Group has been working with financial firms for close to 30 years helping them become more effective in their markets and closing their sales opportunity gap.  ACTG has mastered the art of using science-based data and finely honed coaching strategies to help build effective sales teams.  Don’t miss our weekly sales management blog insights from our team of expert contributors.


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