Leading a sales team by example is something that must be constantly pursued by directors and sales heads. If the words convince and can take some people forward, the examples drag and are definitive. But, for that, it is necessary to practice some important actions.
Regardless of the area of activity, a good leader is able to instigate and extract the maximum of the creative capacity of each team member.
Of course, when we talk about a team’s sales department, words alone are not enough.
More than talking about how to do, instruct and train, it is necessary to show in practice. In other words, lead by example.
But here it is not a question of showing once how something should happen and leaving aside the actions.
No: leadership by example is constant. Disciplined and attentive to see the crucial points to be focused on each moment.
Today’s article talks about how a director or head of sales can lead your business team by example.
We will cover important actions to facilitate this mission and also other important topics:
- How to be an example leader?
- How to inspire your team?
- What is humanized leadership within the sales industry?
Stay with us to inspire, motivate and bring out the best in your salespeople.
What is humanized leadership within the sales industry?
Without a doubt, a good leader is the person that everyone on the sales team wants to follow.
Whether you are the head of sales or the commercial director, everyone should have the example in their path to encourage, inspire and awaken the will for growth in everyone in the sales sector.
Leadership must transmit positivity – especially in times that are not favorable, such as the impact on sales caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
You need to move on, right? So: always be attentive to the people around you, even if it is remotely due to forced sales telework.
Within this mission, it is important to exercise so-called humanized leadership.
This is nothing more than working out the behavior of your entire sales force.
And you do this by eliminating actions and also concepts that add nothing to productivity and contribute to achieving the proposed goals and objectives.
The focus of humanized leadership is to develop the skills of each salesperson and pre-salesperson.
Therefore, the two main factors here are: listening – always active – and dialogue.
This is how you have the information you need to motivate your team.
A manager who can lead by example exercises the same behavior and professionalism that he expects from his employees.
And it does this in a natural way, creating an extremely positive and conducive work environment to increase everyone’s productivity every day.
More than that: humanized leadership knows how to deal with each person individually.
It highlights the best in each one, it is fair in assessing performance and it is always attentive to motivate and engage everyone.
It is difficult, of course: but it is worth it and needs to be done.
How to lead a sales team by example? Check 7 actions
Before taking action to affirm and strengthen sales leadership, it is important to be aware of 5 important pillars of someone who wants to lead by example:
- Serve – that is, offer all the support your team needs at all times;
- Promote self-management – that is, the whole team is able to make decisions based on the work methodologies;
- Self-responsibility – the leader sees problems as challenges and does not blame the circumstances;
- Enhancement – a true leader is always improving in all aspects to be better every day.
However, it is necessary, within a sales routine, to put some actions into practice so that these pillars above are no longer just text.
What to do?
Well, we’ve separated 7 actions to help you lead the company’s sales sector by example.
1 – Maintain ethics and consistency
Two indispensable elements not only when it comes to leading a sales team, but for life.
Ethics and consistency are non-negotiable values for anyone. It is obviously indispensable when we speak of leadership by example within the commercial sector.
For that, you need to police yourself all the time. The leader needs to keep speeches, actions and decisions in line.
Always, of course, meeting internal policies and the company’s mission, vision and values.
It is a fundamental action also in relation to how to act with customers, regardless of their size.
Show how to act ethically and consistently when dealing with a customer.
This is leading by example in sales: exposing values and showing, in practice, how things need to happen.
2 – Trust and delegate
The leader must trust his team. But for that you need to give her chances to show confidence.
So you have to delegate tasks – start with the simplest ones – and trust that they will be performed.
But they are not simply carried out: they must be made in time and within the expected quality standard.
That’s why you set an example, right? It shows how it needs to be done in your team’s sales training and starts to trust that he will perform the activities correctly.
Be attentive and understand each salesperson’s talents, preferences, strengths and weaknesses.
This will help you to delegate the right tasks initially and also direct training to improve the points needed in each one.
Delegating and trusting is also a way to encourage self-management. The freedom with responsibility that each one needs to have.
3 – Adopt positive and purposeful attitudes
Positive and purposeful attitudes are able to motivate everyone around. And, well … you need to set an example, right?
In times of crisis when sales become scarcer, it is necessary to face the problem as an opportunity.
Opportunity to improve the sales process, prospecting techniques, scripts, everything that involves the team’s routine.
It is time to reinforce that everyone has a very important role and can contribute not only by carrying out activities but also by being strategic.
Encourage your team to seek better solutions, to make some stage of the sales funnel more productive and assertive, for example.
Put everyone in the same boat, with commitment and dedication to be able to do even more and better daily.
4 – Be there to listen
You will only be able to really motivate and lead your team if you are available to them.
It is useless to say that you are always ready to help them if you are never there or ready to listen to them.
Listen to the demands, difficulties and challenges that each one has. Learn to guide them and help them to overcome obstacles.
You need each one well, producing and feeling comfortable with what needs to be done, right?
So, listen. Perhaps there are personal problems interfering. Or some specific technical difficulty.
Also ask for sincere feedback from them regarding the process, activities, stages of the funnel.
It’s a building together, remember? You just need to show that it’s easy to reach out and talk to you.
5 – Invest in continuous improvement
Knowledge is essential for decision making at any time within a company.
So, a self-respecting sales leader is restless and constant in his quest to improve himself more and more.
Specialization courses, MBA, undergraduate, post…
There is also a lot of online content in eBook, research, books. The important thing is not to stand still.
The truth is that the demand increases every day. Competition is also moving, improving.
If you stagnate because of the good numbers you have today, it is possible that this scenario will change later and you are not prepared.
So, in addition to consuming a lot of content to become an even better leader, share it with your salespeople.
Encourage them to seek this constant improvement as well. This is setting an example.
Check with your directors if there is no possibility of paying for a course for your team, who knows?
Leading by example requires a change in behavior. It requires a mindset of success and vigilance at all times.
One-off initiatives will not drag or convince your team completely. They do not keep engagement at the necessary level.
Keep it clear and encourage self-awareness – starting with yourself, of course!
6 – Provide the best work tools
You get the best out of your salespeople when you give them the best work tools.
In other words, as much as you want the sector to be increasingly productive, it will be useless if you have not promoted digital transformation in it.
Give your salespeople a complete sales CRM, with features that really help them in their routine.
That eliminates repetitive and robotic tasks, that has integrations and features that allow them to sell more and better by doing less activities.
It is up to the head of sales to search for this software. Test them and participate in the demonstration.
Understand how it will actually help the company. Influence the board to free up money for your hiring and, of course, ensure that everyone understands its functioning and fills the system!
7 – Take your responsibilities
Last, but not least – and corroborating the pillars mentioned above – is the fact of assuming responsibilities.
If the goal is not reached, if many churns are occurring, if a product or service does not have as much output …
It is the leader’s responsibility. Forget blame for external factors.
Leading by example is knowing your role when things are going well or when they are not.
Take on the mission for yourself and call on everyone to unite adverse scenarios.
So, how can we help you?
If you have any questions or want to know more about how a CRM helps companies, talk to a consultant today.
Enjoy and read two articles that will help you lead your sales team by example every day.
The first talks about how to build a positive and productive organizational culture in companies.
The second has some motivational phrases to inspire you and your team.
A hug from CWT, your CRM. #RunCWT