3 ways to get the most from your sales team

How do you build a sales team that achieves results, but does it in the right way? Shelley Lavery from Jiminny shows us how.

In October 2019, Sales Confidence staged its first exclusive sales leaders event at the stunning Andaz Hotel, in the heart of London’s tech hub. We were privileged to hear from five sales leaders, sharing insights into what makes them successful. Based on these talks, we’ve put together a series of articles. Even if you couldn’t be there, you can still get inspired.

Shelley Lavery

Our first speaker was Shelley Lavery. Shelley is Founder and COO at Jiminny, the platform for all your team’s communications and a valued partner of Sales Confidence. Before Jiminny, Shelley was Group SVP at Reward Gateway.

In her talk, Shelley shared three things leaders can do for their sales teams which boost their productivity, at the same time keeping them motivated.

1 — Recognise behaviour as well as results

One of the problems with sales is that we’re so numbers-driven, with our eyes always on the data. We sometimes fall into the trap of failing to recognise the behaviour that goes on every day to try and get us there. To get the most out of your sales team, identify how your team behave in accordance with your company values, on the way to achieving their number.

To illustrate this better, Shelley shared a story. One of her reps thought he was about to close a deal, so Shelley was surprised when he called to say he had lost it due to a competitor halving their price.

‘And after a moment he said, ‘Well, I’ve offered to help them anyway. He said they’d got some really big goals around their people strategy and I think there’s a lot of people in our team that could offer a lot of value.’ And you know what? I was so proud of him because while he lost the deal for the product that day, he absolutely won the relationship. And twelve months later, what happened? We won. We won the contract.’

2 — Give your team freedom and autonomy in the sales process

Of course, you need a sales process and your team have to follow it. Otherwise, you have a team of lone wolves and mavericks running around doing whatever they like on an ad hoc basis. However, you can go too far and end up chaining your reps to an over-prescribed sales process. Sure, you shrink the risk, but you also shrink your reps’ ability to connect with their buyer.

Instead, look for a happy medium. Set out best practices, but give your reps autonomy around them

‘Let them use their best judgment and come up with new ideas. That is where the magic is. On the other side of the machine is a human who’s buying through feeling and emotion. What does the buyer need to believe, think, feel and see and how can we move them through their decision? This new way of thinking creates this freedom for reps to better connect with the buyer, ultimately because they were better connected to themselves. ’

3 — Hire people with a passion for sales

Sales isn’t right for everyone. Many people are attracted by the idea of selling, but when they start, they soon find out it isn’t for them.

Hire people who are right for sales, who can be creative and want to develop themselves as a professional.

How can you do this? By asking the right questions when you interview. For example:

· Tell me about how you develop yourself?

· Tell me why you want this job? (specifically this one)

Also, make sure you hire people that fit with your company values. That way, they’re likely to love their time at your company.

Over to you

That’s how Shelley Lavery gets the most from her sales teams. Now, we want to know what you think.

If you’re a sales leader, what are your tips for keeping your team productive but fulfilled at the same time?

If you’re a rep, how would you respond to Shelley’s ideas?

Let us know in the comments below.

If you would like to be in the audience at the next Sales Confidence event, check the Events page on our site here.

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