One of the first legitimate interactions your business has with a client or customer is most likely a salesperson. They are the face or voice of your marketplace, so you want to ensure sure you’ve got some talented people to close those deals.
Sales teams are not your stereotypical sharks that ruthlessly go in for the kill. The game has changed and there are facets of successful salespeople. Building a great team is like a strategic game of Sudoku, one may fit but it can throw it all off. We have the six steps to help get you started!
1. Evaluate Your Situation
You can’t solve a problem without knowing the question. This applies to building a team of any sort. Do some analyzing and figure out what it is that you need. Is demand increasing and your current team isn’t able to keep up? Are your methods out of date and no longer apply to what you need? Chances are that the answers have already been brought up, so do some double checking and ask around to see what others think need improving.
Another angle is brainstorming what you envision for this team. What kind of culture do you hope to create? If you already have a sales team but are looking to improve, ask them where they’d like to grow and see how you can facilitate it. Customer care, cold callers, and closers and much more are all possible positions you need filled.
Related: Are Millennials The Future Of Your Marketplace?
If you’ve never built a sales team before, Google is your friend. Find out where to scout for talent and what you should be looking for. Tradeshows, networking events, and referrals are some ways you can find the right people.
Ultimately you’ll want a cohesive team that’s able to work together in a healthy, competitive environment.
To get you started, I have a quick list of personas you can look out for. The four overarching types of salespeople are transactional, relational, closers, and consultants.
– Transactional: A more passive sales-person that gets by with easy sales. Transactional salespeople are typically found in work environments like retail where the buyer knows what they want, they find and buy.
– Relational: As the name suggests, relational salespeople thrive off building rapport with their customers. They tend to bring in the return customers with their personalities so they work great in account-based positions.
– Closers: The end of the tunnel is the goal for closers. Making the deal is the game for them and they are who make up a majority of the sales community. Careful to not make the client feel too pressured into decisions!
– Consultants: If you were you combine the relational and closers, you would get the consultant. Thought to be the most well-rounded salesperson, closers are able to close the deal while building a relationship.
3. Develop A Solid Hiring Process
The longest portion of your team building endeavor has to be the hiring process. If you want to do it right, it will take time. Like I mentioned earlier, your process can begin with doing fieldwork. Going to events, advertising, and definitely using referrals are great ways to attract attention to meet some really great potentials.
Finding all-stars is definitely the goal but also give the underdogs a chance. If you see potential in an individual ask yourself if they’re coachable and if they’d mesh well with the team. A cultural fit should be a big factor in your decision. A candidate could be perfect on paper but if your team and they don’t get along then it’s back to the drawing board. During the interviews, feel free to ask some fun yet telling questions. Ask them to sell you the chair they’re sitting on or a sales experience they had.
Related: Time Management While Running A Marketplace
4. Don’t Skimp On Training
Training should be a priority whether you have the best salesperson in the field or not. Company goals and values should be shared and implemented in the training program. Teach them how to win and instill the metrics they should know and share with clients.
Activities you can conduct are roleplaying, doing screencasts, and call shadowing. With these, you’ll have a first-hand look at what everyone’s strengths and weaknesses are. The key is to always keep them learning and working on their craft. Have team meetings and see where improvements can be made and of course be patient. Building a strong sales team is a company investment and it takes time to fully bloom.
5. Base Salaries
There’s much discussion about whether to pay solely by commission or base and commission. Personally, I’d rather have my team have a comfortable lifestyle than increasing my bottom line. You also want your company to have a piece of mind knowing that they’re working in a caring and supportive environment.
6. Communicate Frequently
Having a constant place to go over problems or achievements is a great way to build morale and improve. Have an open door when it comes to communicating with your team. You’ll be able to solve problems faster and boost team spirit in a safe environment
These are our tips and hopefully, they help you out if you’re in a sales rut. Some parts of this can absolutely be implemented into other departments so you’re we’re kinda getting two birds with one stone. Best of luck!