4 tips for High Sales Growth with a remote sales team
Updated: Apr 8, 2020
As companies increasingly tell their employees to work from home until the coronavirus pandemic gets under control, sales leaders must start managing their sales teams remotely keeping sales growth and motivation high. Trust, clear expectations, good resources for the team and increased communication are key strategies to keep sales going.
Hire salespeople you trust and trust the salespeople you hire. If you don't think your actions will be rewarded, why make the effort at all. This problem can be worse in sales teams, which often structure goals around individual accomplishments. And when you have a remote sales team, it takes extra effort to build trusting relationships. After all, you don't see each other in the office every day.
Communication is key to building trust, but it becomes more important in remote teams. Sales managers best plan their working schedule to overlap most of their team members. That way, if any issues or questions arise, you can respond immediately. When you pay attention to your team's needs, even when they can't physically tap you on the shoulder, you build trust. However, you also must avoid micromanagement. As a remote manager, your communication isn’t always immediate, and you can’t see or hear what team members are doing. Yet, when the activity is there and results follow, it is better to focus on sales motivation.
Resourcing the remote team
If you want to manage a remote sales team effectively, you need to invest in tools that match their work environment. If your team needs remote access, they will need a suitable CRM application all can use. In addition, Skype, Zoom or GTM are key tools to engage with customers. WhatsApp, LinkedIn, Messenger and slack are all tools available to communicate internally.
Make sure internet connections are be adequate and maybe team members need a printer and other minimal home office supplies. Decide on a home office pack and make sure all team members get it. Guide your sellers where needed to use quiet rooms when speaking to customers where possible. Make sure they have a good phone and earpiece.
Expect and inspect
Be clear in expectations for the remote sales team and inspect activity and results. This includes number of customer interactions, follow up standards, use of CRM and tips for managing time more efficiently. If need be, issue a document stating clearly what is expected. Don’t let your sales team just get on with it. Remote work requires expectations as well as management.
When setting expectations, encourage sales employees to meet higher performance levels. This is important as it improves employee engagement and subsequently increases sales productivity. Make sure that sales targets are achievable yet challenging
Increase communication levels between you and the team. Holding daily or weekly virtual meetings, will combat loneliness and it will keep team members on track. Use these meetings to help employees learn more about the company, its direction and different departments. Some companies use gamification technology to keep motivation and productivity up. Offer additional sales and business development training. Remote sales coaching will not only motivate, it will also increase sales.
I have been running remote sales teams since 2007, If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch.
Stay safe and keep selling.