How Sales Managers Can Help

By William F. Kendy

According to sales consultant Andrea Moses, the salesperson who hears an inordinate number of noes is doing something wrong. The first thing a sales manager has to do is get salespeople to recognize and admit there is a problem.

“Get salespeople to admit and acknowledge that there is a problem and encourage them to freely talk about it,” says Moses. “They may not want to talk about the reality of it.”

Once it is established that there is a problem, the sales manager has to identify what the problem is, put a price tag on the lost sales and find a solution.

“You need to approach [the matter] from a practical standpoint. Conduct an audit to find out what the problem is, why it’s happening, what it’s costing the company and what can be done about it,” Moses advises.

“It could be that the salespeople stuck handling price objections, falling short on rapport building skills, need to beef up on product knowledge or one of any number of things,” she adds. “Many times the solution is simply to go back to the basics and take it step by step.

“Salespeople need to address emotions and not obsess about rejection or take it so personally,” says Moses. “When they get rejected, it’s easy to fall into the poor-me syndrome and experience hurt, anger and fear. But the supersalespeople get over it, stay focused and aggressive, and continue on.”

When salespeople are feeling down in the dumps, Moses advises, help them to rethink the way they’re evaluating their sales performance.

“Instead of evaluating themselves on the number of closed sales, tell them to look at the progress they’re making in each component of the overall sales process,” explains Moses. “They may be getting more appointments, making more presentations or meeting more decision makers.

“Remind them that selling is more sophisticated today than ever before, and successful salespeople don’t get caught up in their own emotions.”

Andrea Moses can be contacted in Toronto, Canada, at 416/481-0635.