Coaching is an important piece in sales but you have to make sure you’re equipped with sufficient data so you can better analyze and coach effectively. Today’s guest is Richard Smith and he shares with us how you can use technology to better coach people.
Richard has been in sales for almost ten years selling SaaS solutions to SME’s and organizations. Currently, he is the Co-Founder and Head of Sales at Refract.tv, a UK-based technology company that specializes in sales coaching and feedback technology for calls, demos, and emails. He is passionate about sales development and changing the broken culture and mindset towards sales coaching.
Here are the highlights of my conversation with Richard:
Coaching as a human-to-human experience
Technology is not here to replace the role of a sales coach. Coaching is a very human-to-human experience. Instead, technology is used to enhance the overall experience of coaching sales people and to take the impact of coaching to a completely different level.
The importance of using technology to make coaching effective:
- Overcoming time barrier.
Today, coaching no longer has to be done where you have to sit next to a sales rep but you can do it when you’re commuting on the way to work or when you’re sitting at the airport or while you’re doing your administrative tasks.
The actual challenge in coaching is the lack of any level of measurability. Without having strong measures in place to show the performance of your sales rep and you’re not able to see the notable difference, it just becomes a waste of exercise as managers don’t have a real way of tracking, measuring, and looking at its impact. Using technology, you’re able to measure the impact of coaching as well as see how individuals and teams are improving as a result of that coaching.
Refract.tv focuses on the interaction between two people and get managers the ability to get closer to understand what that interaction looks like so reps are able to better initiate valuable conversations.
They provide insights into how their reps perform in sales conversations through recorded sales calls or looking at how they would react in certain sales situations. The managers are then able to give feedback on those interactions and share best practices.
- What are the things the sales rep says to the prospect that resonates well and what things do not resonate?
- What are the key and missed opportunities on the sales conversation?
- How can salespeople best handle objections and how they can better understand how to handle common objections they get?
How they can help sales managers:
- To get managers closer to understanding how salespeople interact with prospects
- To address the mistakes made on those interactions and show them what “good” looks like
Coaching doesn’t have to be this face-to-face experience. More and more people are now working remotely. As a result, the time managers have to coach their people in person almost doesn’t exist anymore.
You can still then add significant value as a sales manager to the development of your rep by embracing technology.
Even with geographical barriers, coaching can be done more regularly than you’ve experienced before if you sat in the same office with that sales rep since you’re now able to coach whenever you have time and the availability.
Coaching Sales Teams of All Sizes
Nobody should be exempt from sales coaching. Coaching is the single, quickest way to get more out of your existing team. Technology can have varying levels of impact depending on the size and geography of the team.
Great Strategy for New Reps
Build up libraries of best practice interactions and best practice sales calls and have those ready and available from day one of that new sales person coming on board and you can significantly reduce the ramp time of your new rep since they’re able to learn quicker and get confident quicker.
Richard’s Major Takeaway:
Start to take coaching more seriously than you are doing now. Most sales team prioritize making more sales or getting sales teams performing better than they are now or increasing your close rates. But the only way to do that is by taking coaching more seriously and getting coaching built in to be a cultural part of your week. If you can do this across your sales team, you’re going to get powerful results long term than just ordering your team to make more dials or send emails.
Understand the importance of coaching and put some time aside on your calendar every week or even every day to do a little bit of coaching with your sales reps. The more you do it, the more results you’re going to get and you will have a higher producing team.
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