It can feel odd hiring a sales team after you start your business. You were probably the only salesperson for the first few years of your company’s life, and giving up such an important responsibility can be jarring. However, if you want your business to succeed, you have to learn how to delegate and grow. Actually having a sales team is very different than doing sales yourself. You need to trust them, and their skills, implicitly, even if how they sell is different from how you sold. With that in mind, when you first begin to hire and train your sales staff, remember to…
Look for personability
Friendliness and personability are two of the most important qualities of a successful salesperson. It doesn’t matter if someone has three decades of sales experience – if they’re pushy or irritating while selling, they’re going to lose clients. Sales has changed a lot over the last few years. Cold calling is a wash, and the best way to bring in customers is actually through inbound marketing. Your sales staff has to be able to connect with your customers and talk them through the sale, rather than throw pitch after pitch at them.
Foster cooperation, not competition
Competitions used to be really big on sales floors – I think it went hand-in-hand with cold calls and slick pitches. Since cold calling isn’t exactly fun, management would pit sales staff against one another to inspire and motivate. But there is no quicker way to destroy a work environment than by pitting your employees against each other day after day. If you adopt a ‘never enough’ attitude, you’ll lose some of your best people. By all means, set goals, but make them attainable, and don’t foster the sort of environment that makes people lose sleep because they’re worried about their numbers.
Talk to them regularly
You’d think this was a no-brainer, but a lot of new entrepreneurs forget that building a good sales team isn’t just about hiring the right people. You need to talk with them, train them, and guide them. A survey by Lattice Engines found that 42% of sales reps didn’t feel like they had the right information before making their calls. Your sales team are your people on the front-line. They need to know everything about your service, your clients, and their leads. Otherwise you’re going to lose sales from a lack of preparation; a problem that’s completely avoidable.
Have any more questions about building a sales team? Need any help getting the other parts of your business started? Leave a comment below, or give us a call at 1 (877) 692-6772!