How to Manage a Remote Sales Team
July 30, 2020 Comment off
With more people working remotely than ever before, managing a team has been made a lot more difficult. However, the principals remain the same. Here are a few tips for managing a remote team, and how to implement them.
1 – Visible pipeline reviews
Don’t let your team hide. It’s easy to do so when working remotely. Ensure you still have visibility on every single deal by arranging regular, strategic pipeline reviews. Additionally, make it public. You can do that by creating dashboards visible to the entire team, having team pipeline reviews as well as individual ones and sharing team information. That helps your remote team remain accountable and introduces a healthy amount of competitiveness as nobody wants to be at the bottom of the pile.
2 – One-to-one training
When working from home, it’s easy to slip back into bad habits. Whether that is the technique on the phone, poor admin follow-up, email etiquette or confidence. Spend time with every member of the team on an individual basis to work on weaknesses. Additionally, in one-to-one sessions, you can go through specific recorded calls or deal activity in a much more detailed way, so you can provide better advice on how they can close the deal better. While many employees want to work remotely, they also don’t want to stop their learning curve, so it’s important that continues. Call recordings are, clearly, a game-changer here, as you can’t listen in on a call in the office.
3 – Share good results
One of the biggest fears for remote workers is being left out and not feeling part of the company. That’s why celebrating wins is important. Salespeople simply love recognition, so recreating the same atmosphere that would normally happen in the office is important. Whether that was fist bumps, ringing a bell, or hitting a gong, it’s not the same anymore. Instead, when good things happen, make sure everybody knows and make a ‘thing’ out of it. Call a virtual meeting to share the good news. Let the salesperson give a walkthrough on why the deal went well. Share visual leaderboards across the team. There are plenty of other options, but keep in mind that all celebrations will not go unnoticed. And your team will feel more appreciated.
4 – Promote learning
Working remotely isn’t the most stimulating of environments, but you don’t want to let industry knowledge and skill-sharing get sloppy. Promoting a learning ethos across the team is important so they continue to develop. Spark group discussions, encourage your team to attend relevant webinars, ensure they are all signed up to industry newsletters and bulletins, share call recordings with the team if it is of value, and get your team networking on social channels. To be honest, anything is better than nothing. You just don’t want a sales team not interacting with the rest of the world and continuing to learn.
5 – Communicate, communicate
As mentioned at the start, remote working can be lonely. It’s critical for good remote managers to communicate effectively. Sometimes, that can mean overcommunicating. If you aren’t already, start using apps to encourage regular dialogue – we are spoilt for choice these days. Slack, Whatsapp, Teams, Skype for Business… There are loads of options. And don’t fear to be overbearing. Constant and consistent communication ensure visibility on your team’s activities on a day to day basis, and your team will know that you know they are grafting hard still. Other tips such as shared calendars, daily check-ins, and end of day reviews are ways to keep in regular communication with your team.
While remote working does have its challenges, managing your team effectively can have a massive impact on not only the performance of each individual but the mindful as well. Ultimately, every sales manager wants a high-performing, motivated team, so implement these tips to ensure your team are reaping the rewards of remote working, rather than becoming out of touch.