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How to Hold Salespeople Accountable for Achieving Goals

By Tim Deuitch

Do you have a documented sales process? Do you train the desired sales skills? Is the sales team coached? Are wins celebrated? In this video, Tim Deuitch and Bob Parks share four strategies to hold salespeople accountable for achieving their sales goals.

Tim Deuitch: 00:01 I'm Tim Deuitch, Senior Performance Consultant at Strategic Enhancement Group and today I'm joined by our Senior Partner, Bob Parks.

Bob Parks: 00:17 Hi everyone.

Tim Deuitch: 00:19 Our topic today is both simple and challenging. Bob, you once told me about a gathering of 300 district sales managers, where they told you that 65% of their time was spent responding to corporate requests versus literally managing their own team.

Bob Parks: 00:36 That's right, Tim.

Tim Deuitch: 00:37 We can't do much about what corporate needs of you, but we do have advice on the best way to use that remaining 35% or whatever percent you have left. An approach that has the best impact on team performance and that approach is regular team member observation and documentation.

Bob Parks: 00:56 Yes, exactly.

Tim Deuitch: 00:57 Removing superfluous meetings from your calendar, being with your people regularly. Why Bob?

Bob Parks: 01:05 Well, because it's about improving results. Research shows that management involvement in team development can improve results by up to 40%, and that's some research that Wilson Learning did a couple years ago. However, just managing to results doesn't give you the chance to fix the problem. Managing sales behaviors and activity will allow you to correct a performance issue before it's too late. Managing to activities and behaviors enhances a culture of performance and achieves better results. It fosters retention of top performers who feel both supported and recognized for their work.

Tim Deuitch: 01:46 So, what to do? The first step here is to document your sales process and the behaviors, skills, activities and tools that bring it to life.

Bob Parks: 01:55 Right.

Tim Deuitch: 01:56 Secondly, is to teach those skills.

Bob Parks: 01:57 Yes.

Tim Deuitch: 01:59 Then once we've taught those skills, we regularly observe team members in action and we tweak the skills and behaviors in real time. It's no different than a sports team that practices between games, imagine not practicing.

Bob Parks: 02:15 Right.

Tim Deuitch: 02:15 Practicing and discussing the craft builds confidence. Then we document progress, not everything. We don't have to document everything, but we do document the times when you move through the pipeline. When you're defining and understanding the customer conditions and their intent.

Bob Parks: 02:34 Exactly.

Tim Deuitch: 02:35 The stronger the clarity of a customer's needs, the greater value your solutions can be to them and you. As a manager, you focus on this and this documentation is a welcoming thing for your team because the team knows your input grows value when it makes everyone more successful.

Bob Parks: 02:54 Yes.

Tim Deuitch: 02:55 Lastly, chart progress and celebrate. When you share progress and successes, you reinforce a performance mindset where the team is happy as can be to share their progress.

Bob Parks: 03:08 Exactly. Observing and documenting with feedback remain the single most powerful and productive form of holding teams accountable. And they produce great results. Yet, it continues to be an area where most managers spend the least amount of time. The outcome of this approach is a performance and learning culture that sales teams enjoy and they stay with it, one that generates the results that you're looking for. Thanks everyone for listening.

Published: September 7, 2022

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Tim Deuitch

Vice President - Client Success

Tim brings over 25 years of experience working closely with business leaders throughout the Twin Cities and the USA. He has worked within a multitude of workplace cultures and economic cycles, helping leaders and teams improve their effectiveness and results. Since joining SEG in 2007, Tim has continued his work as a change agent, helping organizations meet their goals. Tim graduated from Warren Wilson College in 1983 with a B.S. degree in social work.

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