I’ve been managing sales teams for 15 years so this definitely isn’t an exhaustive list of ‘if only’s’. But maybe this post will make you smile and reassure you that you weren’t alone in making mistakes, maybe you’re an aspiring sales manager or new to sales leadership and would like some advice, either way, I hope this is useful to you.
Roles plays. I hate them, I don’t know why I made my team do them
I’m sure in a few years we will look back and think why did we use sales role plays “that was weird”. We are not actors, we are sales professionals, so why would we expect to be good at this. To start with it’s really hard to replicate a real life situation and I’ve definitely added to the weirdness by throwing the camcorder into the mix ( I cringe as I write this). It just creates a high pressured and unnatural environment which doesn’t add up to a great training experience for your sales rep. There’s no better way to learn than by shadowing real-life sales calls and pitches. My advice for new starters is to shadow and then work with another member of the team to deliver parts of the pitch. Start small, maybe its 20% of the pitch or maybe it’s just one of your products. As their confidence grows add additional parts until they are delivering the whole pitch.