Moving Past the Recovery Phase
By now, most of us have climbed out of the rescue phase of the COVID pandemic. Now we have to focus on moving beyond the recovery phase and resetting our course toward a successful sales rebound in 2021. With the aid of the vaccines and the financial help from the government, most businesses are seeing their way to return to vigorous sales activity as a distinct possibility, but how about our sales teams? Are they ready to charge forward?
Getting Your Sales Team Back on Stride
There is no question that we’ve all experienced a very stressful year. Salespeople and customers have all had to keep things afloat during very difficult situations. Sales leaders need to recognize these difficulties as they try to find ways to motivate salespeople while understanding the current mindsets of customers. In a recent article, Forbes offered several tips for motivating both salespeople and customers in a post-pandemic world. I think their ideas are worth a sales manager’s consideration.
- Set Attainable, Measurable Goals. Your sales team is much more likely to remain focused when it has clearly defined goals. To be effective, goals need to be reasonable and measurable. “Increase sales by 15% in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period last year” is both unambiguous and measurable.
- Keep Learning. Sales tactics are constantly evolving as companies blend traditional sales techniques with online selling. Salespeople need to modify their approach as consumer trends fluctuate or the target audience changes. The need to adapt and evolve has never been greater.
- Eliminate Speculation with Hard Data. End the guesswork as to what’s working and what isn’t by looking at the data. Sales figures charted over time will be much more effective when it comes to pursuing a post-pandemic sales strategy.
- Look for Opportunities to Automate. There are probably a few aspects of your sales funnel that could be automated. Eliminating menial tasks associated with sales allows your team to focus on closing deals and provides a boost to morale.
- Empathize With Customers. People are likely to be more hesitant to make financial commitments as they recover from the pandemic. The successful sales team will incorporate this reality into their approach by making a concerted effort to put themselves into the shoes of the people they are trying to pitch.
- Break Down Barriers to Success. Seek out and tear down any barriers preventing your sales team from moving forward. Take time to sit down with your employees to discuss their strengths and weaknesses and strategize together how you might use the one to overcome the other.
- Celebrate the Wins. Encourage your team to stay motivated by celebrating big and small wins. Friendly competition can also be a good thing as long as it stays
- Connect Outside of the Work Environment. Promote greater connection among employees by organizing team activities away from the office in an environment that is not associated with work. Keep in mind that many are still dealing with the stressors of Covid-19. After-hours activities are fine as long as you do not convey an expectation that attendance is mandatory.
Reinvigorate Your Incentive Program
Just tweaking your sales incentive plan to meet the post-pandemic world may not be enough to overcome the challenges we’re all facing. You may need a totally new approach. An integrated sales rewards and recognition technology platform could be your ticket to a successful 2021 and beyond. This is what we do. Give us a call.