Sales are critical to ensuring the success of a business. After all, without them, we may not have a business at all. Sales bridge the gap between what a potential buyer needs, and what your business can offer them. They play a pivotal role in building brand loyalty among your customers and can determine the longevity of your business.
So what is sales coaching, and why is it important? Well, it is the process of assessing your salespeople’s skills and knowledge. It helps to continuously improve their performance through feedback and practice. And it also allows sales managers to identify areas in the sales process that can be improved.
Do you know how your sales team thinks?
It’s a critical question for organisations to ask themselves. Thinking styles influence the entire sales cycle, from prospecting, communicating, and presenting information, to the ways in which they learn and solve problems.
The HBDI® helps map thinking to your customer engagement strategy and tailor your strategy development process to enhance clarity, confidence and consensus. Here is an example of how knowing your thinking style can help you:
A sales professional who has a strong preference for B-quadrant (process-driven thinking) for example, may struggle with clients who are looking for increased contract flexibility or non-traditional product solutions. Once the person understands it’s a ‘matter of preference’, it becomes easier to avoid a knee-jerk response. With the help of coaching from the sales manager and other development activities, they can learn instead how to leverage the methods they’re comfortable with, such as step-by-step problem solving and precise planning, to not only tackle the issue but even get excited about the challenge.
The idea isn’t to change someone’s thinking, instead, it’s to encourage people to embrace and use the full spectrum of thinking that’s available.
How do you set sales goals?
Like any kind of goal setting, your sales goals should be SMART goals. SMART goals make sure that your goals are both clear and reachable. It is an effective tool that provides the clarity, focus and motivation you need to smash your sales targets.
Specific: Your goals should be clear and specific. What do I want to accomplish?
Measurable: Your goals should be measurable, to help track your progress and stay motivated.
Achievable: Your goals should be both realistic and attainable for them to be successful. How can I accomplish this goal?
Relevant: Your goals should matter to you, and align with your other relevant goals. Does this seem worthwhile?
Time-based: Your goals should have a target date, so you have a deadline to focus on and something to work towards. Sales targets usually align with the end of the month or quarter.
Selling with the customer in mind
Now more than ever it has become crucial to make sure that sales teams are prospecting, nurturing and closing profitable deals for your organisation. Closing these deals requires a high level of personalisation. By getting inside your customer’s head and understanding how they think, you can learn to:
- Present information in a way the customer wants to receive it so they respond more favourably to it
- Plan prospecting activities, meetings and follow-up in a more efficient and targeted way
- Identify and focus attention on the most likely buyers
- Build high-value relationships that lead to long-term customer loyalty and retention
- ‘Walk around’ the thinking quadrants to develop better solutions to prospective customers’ business issues — and increase deal size in the process
Assessing and applying Whole Brain® Thinking
Some examples of how organisations are applying Whole Brain® Thinking and the HBDI® to reach and even exceed their sales targets are:
- Mapping the mental demands of the sales job against the Whole Brain® Model to find alignment and uncover gaps
- Identifying the kinds of thinking required at each stage of the sales process, and mapping the sales professional’s preferences against them for insights
- Maximising development opportunities by tailoring individual learning plans based on the preference data (the sales professionals profile, the job profile, and the process profile), with specific strategies for reinforcement and follow-up
- Accelerating knowledge acquisition and competency development by incorporating Whole Brain® Thinking principles into sales training curricula
- Using Whole Brain® Thinking techniques to gather and share competitive intelligence in a more focused and accurate way
Discover how Priceline utilised the HBDI® and Whole Brain® Thinking to successfully improve and enhance their people and culture across the business. Watch here.
What the HBDI® can do for your sales team
Herrmann and the HBDI® have helped over 2 million people from 97% of Fortune 100 companies to improve their productivity, innovation and collaboration. So if you find your staff are not hitting sales targets, you may like to incorporate the HBDI® into your sales training to help.
If you want to learn more about how Whole Brain® Thinking and the HBDI® can help you and your organisation, have a look at how it works here or get in touch and we’ll help you find the right solution.