How Leading Sales Teams Thrive in Challenging Times
Sales teams are by far the most disrupted teams in this pandemic for the majority of businesses. Two industry experts from TOPO, the Gartner company focused on sales marketing research and advisory, and Outreach, a leading sales engagement SaaS service provider told their audience in the panel discussion "What Now? How Leading Teams Thrive in Challenging Times!" this week.
Here is the brief introduction for this event:
"We’ve invited Dan Gottlieb, an industry expert from TOPO and Victoria Grady, Vice President of Product Marketing at Outreach, to discuss the ways top leaders effectively guide their teams through roadblocks, challenges, and change. In this panel discussion, you will learn about current research about change management, team dynamics, etc, as well as powerful leadership lessons you can apply to your own sales careers. Don't forget to bring your own questions to ask our speakers!"
I attended this insightful panel discussion and learned some of the key takeaways below:
- For most businesses, the entire organization is turning into revenue centric. Revenue leaders need to be more effective to lead human beings to go through this tough period of time while pivoting, with great empathy and compassion.
- Sales organizations need insightful and actionable data more than ever before to successfully pivot their sales conversations and processes, and for the two way dialog between sales leaders and their team.
Discovery with the customers has never been more important in the whole customer engagement process.
- Sales team should promote the culture of coach/mentoring and peer based learning throughout the customer engagement process, with this mindset, sales leaders should be able to realtime look through the pipelines and pivot the engagement to improve the quality individually and organization wide.
Some useful tips and techniques are:
- How to balance accountability with healthy expectations, realistic daily weekly expectations?
- How to enhance the pipeline creation, deal progression and the predictability of forecast?
- How do we facilitate all of that now virtually?
- How to create advanced messaging and make decisions based on insightful data?
- How do you create a data driven culture without being seen as micro management?
- how you introduce it, the transparency of where data is from, the way you have conversations about the data are important.
- It's for the sake of finding ways to continue improving
- Properly communicate the why, make sure people understand it's meant to help them perform better.
Two best practice examples are worth mentioning:
- The way to turn sales team into insight center of the business by creating sales slack channel as a news room. All sales are encouraged to input their customer research info via a simple template. Not only it creates insightful data for the organization, but also it helps sales to have a better insightful conversation with their customers.
- An SD-WAN managed service provider created a snapshot scorecard for their sales team which include the following four measurement:
- activity: conversations with customers
- pipeline: effective conversations to get them into the sales pipeline
- conversion: deals in stages and how to keep customers engaged throughout the progress
- quality: structure of the deals and how to make them better
It's very clear now that new normal is not about should the business move their sales process online or not, it is really how and when. Unfortunately the sales marketing tech stack is way too complex and too expensive to a lot of the struggling businesses during pandemic, and the integration is often very hard because of the lack of standard.
That's why we at More Secure Computing focus on building online marketing/sales channels as the foundation for the digital transformation platform. We hope to help entrepreneurs, startups, and SMBs to leap forward with our Affordable, Effective, Secure business solutions via open technologies.
Please contact us to find out how your business can benefit from the innovative open solutions.