No company is without its sales challenges. Even the highest-performing sales team is faced with obstacles and objections that diminish buyer relationships and affect their ability to communicate with prospects and customers effectively.
What sets a successful sales team apart is the ability to strategically overcome the challenges they face. Here’s how.
They Don’t Ask the Right Questions
Asking prospects the right questions is key to understanding their pain points and needs. Salespeople who rush to pitch miss these key details – and it may cost them the sale.
Instead, salespeople should ask insightful questions to learn how they can help their prospects and in what ways. This takes preparation, however. Your team needs to know how to phrase questions to avoid a “yes” or “no” answer, which doesn’t leave much room for them to persuade.
Even the best salespeople shouldn’t go off the cuff. Train your salespeople to ask relevant questions and use them as needed. Sure, there’s room for improvising, but they should have a basic structure to guide them.
They’re Afraid to Sound Too Pushy
One of the biggest challenges for salespeople and business owners is that they’re afraid of coming across as “too pushy.” Incidentally, the people who are concerned about being pushy are almost never actually pushy, let alone too pushy.
Many people have had negative experiences with salespeople who steamroll over their prospects and don’t let any resistance or objection get in their way – even if it’s legitimate. They’re not effective and the entire sales culture has shifted away from that sort of “used car salesman” tactic.
But the key is understanding what being pushy really is. To be effective, salespeople need to serve their customers, and sometimes that means calling a few more times, showing up in more places, and getting the message to prospects. Persistence is helping.
Salespeople can contact and follow up with prospects across many channels – calls, voicemail, email, messages on social media, and in-person meetups at industry events. These don’t always have to be a pitch. Salespeople can connect by providing value. Maybe there’s an opportunity to invite them to an event, share industry news, or announce that a competitor is expanding into the market.
They Lack Confidence
Confidence is important for salespeople. Managing objections is about transferring confidence from the salesperson to the prospect to assuage their doubts, fears, and concerns. Giving them confidence is how deals are made.
It takes a long time to build, but it can be gone in a flash. Confident salespeople feel sure of themselves and their skills, giving them the ability to handle the pressure of sales and complete all the tasks necessary to close a deal.
If salespeople can’t show confidence, they can’t persuade, and the prospect won’t buy. Confidence is fragile and can be lost because of dealing with new topics, fearing the unknown, not being prepared, or internal pressures.
Once again, this can be helped with a standard script. The goal here isn’t to turn salespeople into robots, but to give them a standard procedure that they can follow – and build on – to navigate the complexity of a sales pitch.
They Lack Training
Some companies consider sales training a slow return compared to other investments. In actuality, sales training is a worthwhile investment in a company that enables the sales team to reach quotas and build higher customer renewal rates.
People learn through education, even with a so-called “natural” skill like sales. An untrained sales rep can’t be expected to be confident, engaged, or successful. They may fall back on instincts, rather than knowledge and procedures.
And with that, sales managers need to be trained to hold salespeople accountable for their goals. The sales manager is responsible for enforcing the high standards on their team. If they don’t know what success looks like, they can’t be expected to lead.
Sales Coaching Is the Best Way to Empower a Sales Team
Whether sales reps have issues with confidence or training or anything else, sales coaching can improve their professional skills through consistent feedback and engagement. This isn’t just about tactics – it’s about addressing the sales rep holistically to boost performance.
People thrive with support. A sales coach is a way to invest in the success of your team, and by extension, your business.