Sales coaching is the process of developing and mentoring a salesperson through one-on-one relationships with a manager or peer. An effective coaching program helps reps self-diagnose deficiencies, enabling reps to take greater ownership of their performance and improve their outcomes.
In the scheme of sales training and sales readiness, coaching lives between sales onboarding and sales training. While onboarding happens at the onset of a job or during periods of transition, sales coaching, like training, should be a continuous process. But unlike training scenarios in which a manager typically leads discussion on broad initiatives and tactical skills, coaches should listen more than they talk to help reps uncover issues on their own.
According to Damon Jones, Head of Global Strategy and Growth at Sandler Training, “Too much of sales management is telling salespeople what to do as opposed to letting salespeople do their own self-discovery and learning. By investing in training your sales coaches, you can foster good behavior and better outcomes from the start.”
A formal sales coaching program should therefore develop and certify coaches before they engage with reps. By the end of their training, a great coach should understand how to:
- Ask questions to prompt self-discovery of issues
- Use data and observation to identify performance gaps in reps
- Create an environment that fosters open, honest conversation
- Motivate and incentivize individuals, not just teams
“There are no bad salespeople, only bad coaches. It’s the coach’s job to understand what a rep needs to be successful — and deliver it.”
As with any other aspect of sales, coaching can be enhanced with the right technology.
Colum Lundt, Chief Revenue Officer at Sandler Training, “We encourage teams to use conversational intelligence platforms to analyze calls, and then use that data to facilitate role-plays and call reviews.”
Platforms such as Gong or Chorus.ai can create data-driven insights, not just or individual abilities, but of top seller behaviors you want reps to adopt.
Additionally, sales enablement platforms will be essential to ensuring coaches have their engagement kits, training, and best practices at the ready when they need them. Just as a rep may use a sales enablement tool to find the best content for a buyer, a sales coach should also be empowered to quickly discover relevant content — such as calling recordings or playbooks — and effectively engage reps.
Sandler’s world-class sales expertise is now in Highspot’s world-class sales enablement platform. Highspot is a sales enablement platform that gets your sales and marketing content in front of sellers and allows them to share it with buyers to increase the performance of the sales team.
This week, Highspot launched the sales industry’s first-of-its-kind Highspot Marketplace, featuring access to Sandler’s leading sales methodologies, strategic services, and go-to-market expertise with the click of a button. Highspot is the only sales enablement platform to offer in-product access to sales expertise from third-party partner organizations. Highspot customers can now add Sandler expertise directly to their sales enablement environment.
The benefit to Sandler clients is the ability to measure when reps are engaging with the organization’s content from marketing, sales, and training so they can quantify the revenue impact of each initiative.
“Highspot is proud to give our customers exclusive access to expertise from world-class partners such as Sandler. Now with the click of a button, teams can integrate best practices, frameworks, training and more directly into reps’ workflow to increase adoption and impact.” – Jake Braly, VP Strategic Alliances and Partner Sales, Highspot
Get Sandler’s content in the Highspot Marketplace here!