8 Common Sales Coaching Struggles, Plus a Key Sales Coaching Software for Sales Effectiveness
By Jesse McCarl
Let’s be honest: working in sales is a grind. Reps always have quotas to meet, new prospects to contact, and unresponsive leads that need follow-up.
No matter what, there are some common sales coaching struggles that you will run into as a manager. From preparing your reps for the way your company operates and teaching best practices to generally keeping them motivated, managers may feel like they need some backup. The right sales coaching software can go a long way to make the lives of leaders easier, and if the software is truly efficient, the lives of your reps, too.
Here are the eight most common pain points for sales coaching, and how to address them.
1. The sales funnel.
The sales funnel is foundational to the job of a rep, so a thorough understanding must be properly taught and reiterated. The exact details from prospect to customer look different in every company, so the job of the manager is to teach exactly what kinds of communications are expected each step of the way.
The right sales coaching software can relieve the manager of the need to supervise the steps along the funnel. An adaptive selling platform like Crystal can be incorporated into every step of the sales pipeline, and help guide reps naturally from one step to the next.
2. Sales processes and tools.
Once your rep has an understanding of the sales funnel, they need to be trained on the tools that your company uses. You may use various sales enablement tools, prospecting tools, a CRM for active leads and customers, and so on.
The best way to make training on these tools easier? It’s simple: get software that is easy to use! No one reads the directions on their new Apple products because they’re designed to be intuitive. Get software for your reps that make a positive impact and fold them in seamlessly to the existing workflows.
3. Outreach communication.
Have you ever seen an email sent by one of your reps and been absolutely mortified? Obviously, you can’t be expected to proofread every outreach email sent by your team, but if you had the time, wouldn’t it be nice? Those first impressions are essential and those messages should be as professional and personalized as much as possible.
Writing assistant tools like Crystal’s Writing Assistant embeds neatly into existing platforms. Crystal’s Google Chrome extension can also serve as an instant check on professionalism and communication style for each personality type. For the reps, they don’t need to download or check anything extra and for you as the manager, there’s no need to proofread 1:1 outreach.
4. Building strong connections with leads.
In the grind of a sales team, it can be easy for reps to put their leads on auto-pilot after a certain point. Coaching in this area can be where you run into the most friction as a manager.
The reality, however, is that this phase is the most important for closing a sale; templated emails and scripted phone calls aren’t good enough for building relationships. No matter how strong the first impression, most leads will only buy from someone they feel they can trust long term. Sales coaching software like Crystal will help personalize communication every step of the way. For emails, target the way the person likes to be spoken to. For calls, anticipate how various stakeholders on the call will interact with each other.
5. Handling objections.
Objections and pushback are other areas where sales representatives can shut down,. It’s important to coach the team that when prospects interrogate the product or service, it’s actually a good thing. This could typically mean the prospect is almost ready to close, but has a few more boxes they want to check first.
The sales team should be equipped with tools that help maintain professionalism during this stage of the funnel.
6. Knowing the right questions to ask.
It’s easy for reps to focus on getting every single customer as far down the sales funnel as possible, but that may not always be the right approach. The truth is that not every lead and prospect will benefit from your product or service, and reps should be coached on screening leads just as much as they’re being screened themselves.
Sales coaches should supply teams with qualifying questions to help screen potential customers for better qualification. Provide sample questions in a visual medium so they can be referenced frequently. In team meetings, encourage members to share stories of disqualified buyers in addition to the big wins and new clients. This will highlight to other reps that slowing down and asking the right questions will ultimately save time, not cost it.
7. 1:1 meetings.
Every rep deserves 1:1 feedback, for both the good and the bad. As a coach, you should have regular meetings with each rep. Maybe having these meetings every week (or even every other week) simply isn’t feasible for you and your team, but reps will thrive knowing there’s dedicated time carved out with their manager.
Just as your reps can use Crystal to know how to approach each lead, you can use Crystal as a sales coaching software for your own staff. The tool will make sure you communicate with each person in a way that helps him or her thrive. Some members of your crew will need improvement opportunities sandwiched between encouraging feedback, others will view that as fluffy chit-chat. Leveraging Crystal properly can stop turnover on your team in its tracks.
Some managers can shine in individualized coaching but struggle with leading a whole group. How do you highlight the wins of one team member without demoralizing a hard-working employee who struggled this month?
Crystal not only teaches you how to talk to each personality type on your team, but it will give you a visual representation of how your staff will interact in group and team meetings. The right coaching software will help you make each team member feel seen and appreciated, even in a crowded setting.
Extra: making time for yourself, too.
Don’t forget but it’s also important to focus on yourself. As the manager, the way you lead defines the team’s success. That kind of responsibility takes a lot of time and energy. You may or may not have the same pressure to hit quota, but their success or failure reflects on you. That’s why you need sales coaching software that makes things easier for you and your team.
Arm yourself and your team with Crystal - the adaptive selling platform. Not only will you know how to approach each employee to stay motivated for their goals, but it will also free up time to provide the personalized coaching you want to give. Remove the need to review so many outreach emails and demo recordings by trusting software that knows how to talk to every personality, both internally with your team and externally with prospects.