Your reps have access to tons of data. No matter which sales skills a rep wishes to grow, there's a metric that will help them plot the correct path to improvement.
As a sales manager, you're perfectly positioned to guide the way that your reps analyze data, and help them translate that analysis into real performance gains.
Your first task, though, is simply getting your reps to buy in. Data can be a great motivator, but it needs to be presented in ways that resonate with your reps. Ahead, you'll learn more about four great techniques for motivating your reps with data.
Use Gamification to Diversify Coaching
Everything is more fun when you turn it into a game, and growing sales skills is no different. The concept of gamification is straightforward – take something that isn't normally a game, and add game-design elements to make it more engaging.
Teachers have been using this concept successfully for years, at all levels of education. It's popular because it's simply an effective way to teach, in a classroom and in the workplace.
Start simple, with a basic points system and a leaderboard that everyone in the office can access. You can do this with a spreadsheet or even a whiteboard. Even the most basic game-design elements inject a bit of fun into the process, and posting a leaderboard practically ensures competition, another key element of gamification.
You can also choose to purchase software for gamification, which will save you time and allow you to add more complex game-design elements.
Help Reps Own a Metric
Here's where you can help your reps cut through the noise, and train their focus on the metrics that will yield the most meaningful performance gains.
Analyze your rep's performance, then assign that rep a metric and let them own it. Explain the logic behind the metric, and the steps that your rep can take to improve it.
When you meet with your reps, always be sure to ask which metrics they're focusing on, and what they're doing to improve performance in those areas. A desire to improve isn't always enough, even if it's strong. That's why your guidance and direction on how to improve is so important for your reps to get the most out of their data.
Do Daily, Team-Wide Progress Reports
Set up specific, regular times for your reps to report to the team on which metrics they're working on, and the progress they've made. This concept fits nicely with helping your reps own a metric. The idea is to establish accountability, and keep your reps focused on constant improvement.
When your reps know that they'll be reporting to the team every day, week, or month, the metric they're expected to report on will always stay top of mind.
Start with a daily standup meeting, in which each rep reports to the group on their progress. It's a simple way to establish accountability, and it also shows your reps that everyone is in the same boat. Even top performers have room to improve, and metrics to work on.
Tie Compensation to Your Data and Metrics
There are many ways to motivate your sales team, but nothing does the job quite like compensation. Just as in any industry, sales reps prefer to make more money than less. The difference in sales is that performance gains play a much larger, more direct role in compensation.
Sales reps don't have to wait for a raise, because improved performance leads directly to more won deals.
Add to that motivation by tying compensation to key data and metrics. For this tactic to work, you need to make sure that your reps understand exactly how their compensation is calculated, and how changes in performance will impact that calculation.
Use forecasting tools to show your reps exactly what they have to gain financially by improving key metrics, and tie bonuses to the metrics that are most in need of improvement.