3 Keys to Unlock Your Transition to Remote Sales Management
Sales leaders face pressure to deliver above-market growth at the best of times. With the current global pandemic, that demand has never been more acute for businesses across the globe to drive revenue. The challenge for many, is adapting to a new way.
Though sales strategies have constantly been evolving over the years, COVID-19 has only accelerated the move to a more modern, digital way of selling for traditional sales managers and their teams. As a result of this global crisis, there are 3 key ‘must haves’ to be successful in transitioning to remote sales management.
- Lead the mindset shift.
Traditional sales organisations are now facing significant changes moving to remote sales in addition to balancing the effective management of remote working. Sales management mindset must shift to embrace the new world and ways of working – particularly if they want the team to do the same.
How can sales managers achieve a mindset shift? It starts with you.
- Sales managers need to be the one to make the decision and lead the change in approach.
- Understand what you must unlearn and relearn to put together a plan (i.e. technologies for communication, collaboration, customer engagement and remote management skills).
- Let your team see you leading the way and encourage them to adopt it themselves.
- This is the age of empowerment – encourage your team to take more ownership for their business and support them with coaching and the broader development they need.
- This is the perfect time to also encourage experimentation and find new, creative ways to engage your team, and for your team to engage and win with their customers. Empowered teams will embrace change and innovation!
- Most importantly, celebrate the shift – catch people doing it right, acknowledge, then build and share on successes within the team.
- Adopt and embrace digital.
The choice is endless when it comes to digital tools. These are the tools that are crucial to help you and your team effectively collaborate, communicate, and most importantly, engage with clients and prospects. Investment of your time is critical to explore the most appropriate tools, as well as the provision of any support and training needed to master and utilise each tool to its full potential.
Some of the tools commonly used in the past 3 months between suppliers and their customers, have included:
- Google Meet
- Zoom (The leader of the pack!)
- Microsoft Teams
- Workplace by Facebook
It is tools like these that are part of sales management experimentation – testing the technologies that are most appropriate for you and your team, and in turn, your customers.
- Focus on wellbeing and support.
These are uncertain times and the companies that are making progress understand their people are the top priority. Changing how we do things can be stressful at the best of times, especially for traditional sales teams who have thrived on the human touch; in-person meetings and presentations, fast-pace activities and more – suddenly how they operate has changed.
It is crucial that when transitioning to remote sales, there needs to be necessary support, strong performance guidance and objectives, regular communication and collaboration to ensure there is engagement within the team, and a high focus on the mental health and wellbeing of individuals.
A great example can be seen with music streaming giant, Spotify. Spotify founded their internal podcasts to explore how their employees were adapting to working remotely. This proved so popular they were made available externally. They have since collaborated with some of their customers to do the same – focused on wellbeing topics within and outside of COVID-19 times.
A final word
Effective sales managers need to advocate for change and lead the transition of the team. Successful leaders recognise that the essential components to change is not only providing the right technology and tools to prospect and hunt sales opportunities, but additionally, take on the critical collaboration tools to connect their teams to build morale which focus on communication. Add to this an increased need for focus on wellbeing and mental health for all our remote teams, and it becomes clear that the traditional role of sales managers needs to adapt to new ways of working.
The time to make that shift is now.
Take the first step and REGISTER for our FREE introductory webinar Mastering the Virtual Sale. Hope you can join us to receive key learnings and essential takeaways on digital selling in today’s world.
Or to discover how Drake International’s portfolio of Talent Management Solutions can solve your people, productivity and performance issues, visit us at au.drakeintl.com