“Coaching is unlocking a person’s potential to maximize their own performance. It is helping them to learn rather than teaching them.” – Timothy Gallwey
What Is Sales Coaching?
Sales coaching is a process where sales managers strive to improve the performance of a team by helping them understand, develop new skills, or hone existing skill sets. In this process, teams are pushed to grow, excel, and take on responsibilities to achieve or exceed their goals.
Why Sales Coaching?
Besides targets, sales coaching is considered to be extremely beneficial in the following ways :
- Tool for motivation
- Provides an opportunity for self-assessment – strengths, and areas that need focus
- Builds and strengthens relationships – both internally and with customers.
- Employee retention and professional development
- Instill long term reinforcement of goals
- Sharing best practices
But sales coaching is individualized. Therefore it is important to capitalize on each one’s strengths to achieve results.
When to Coach?
While there is no hard and fast rule as to when sales coaching should be done, it is important to know that it is an integral part of an organization’s sales training structure. It can happen in a formal or informal setting. The circumstances could range from planned pipeline review meetings to ad-hoc feedback sessions based on performance. However, the following are some common scenarios that can be considered for sales coaching as a discipline:
- Deal/Call Reviews – A monthly or bi-weekly review of shadowing or listening to sales rep’s call or meeting with the prospect to help understand what went well and what areas sales reps need help with
- Pre-call Planning – a mock phone call or a meeting session before the rep gets on an actual call with the prospect. Especially very useful for training newbies or when rolling out a different strategy for an upsell or cross-sell.
- Debriefing post customer meetings – when you have a very sensitive or critical prospect on board and you have a certain plan in place, debriefing meetings can act as the right platform for coaching.
- Team meetings – A great place to encourage teams to share challenges and strength by also rewarding them with the right coaching,
- One-to-one meetings – Reviews or regular 1:1 meetings are again an opportunity for coaching, where you can analyze specifics of interaction (e.g. email conversation, phone call) with prospects by the sales reps in detail.
- Address challenge – when the sales reps express difficulty in any particular area, tool, a situation that needs support or help.
“The most important thing in coaching is communication. It’s not what you say as much as what they absorb.” – Red Auerbach
Why Videos in Sales Coaching?
Consider this simple analogy, even while you are looking for a perfect recipe online, which one would be your choice?
A blog page full of text with images and important annotations in the brackets to help you remember the ingredients or a video showing how the recipe is made right from how things are prepped to cook, how the chef manages time and adds a touch of perfection when serving it?!
The answer is obvious.
This applies to training in any field. When it comes to sales coaching, there is never a one-size-fits-all approach. However, one crucial element that is changing in this landscape is the inclusion of videos as tools inside the sales enablement and training segment.
According to the Forbes estimate, a company that holds 2 live training events roughly would spend over $120,000 per year. Now if you count the lost opportunity of sales, post this training then that would add up to be $1 million!
That’s a lot! For starters, videos have brought in flexibility, economy, and convenience. They can drive traffic to your website by having your company show up on the search results, amp up customer experience among other benefits. But how are they helpful when it comes to sales coaching, let’s take a look at each one of them in detail.
As shifts in demographic and technology lead us farther away from the typical ‘whiteboard training’, sales managers have understood the importance of collaboration and communication. By 2030, the demand for remote work will increase by 30% as Gen Z fully enters the workforce.
Videos will serve as a bridge between meaningful verbal and nonverbal communication. It helps salespeople get productive feedback, work on improvement areas. More so they can pick up cues in terms of body language, facial expressions, intonation, and phrasing when coached through videos.
Mark Cox, Managing Partner at In the Funnel – Sales Consulting notes that “emails, text and instant messaging lack the personal touch that we need as human beings to feel connected and part of a team, so don’t hesitate to pick up the phone or get on a video chat to talk strategy or update your manager. For sales leaders, this is also a much better way to gauge stress levels or other emotions that don’t come across in writing.”
With video sales coaching, salespeople need not depend on a particular time to connect. On-demand videos help them practice and perfect the sales pitches and cold calls with ease at their own pace through their portable devices. The biggest advantage of videos here is they provide an opportunity for salespeople to practice a number of times which might not be the case otherwise.
Sales managers can share the best practices of top performers with the rest of the team. They can refer to specific aspects of performance that need change. They can share performances that encourage winning behavior patterns among moderate or underperformers. Managers can easily record these interactions for future references to build on existing coaching and enablement assets.
Facing the Fear:
In a collaborative environment, video coaching lets the salesperson shed his fear of the camera. Mock client calls, role plays are a part of the day to day activity. Even better is the fact calls and meetings are captured and there is no shying away from the microphone or camera. This lets the sales managers better assess and understand the strengths and areas that need improvement without being intrusive. They can provide valuable feedback, initiate individual coaching sessions, and bring them up to speed.
Reinforced learning with Iteration :
While live video communication when recorded can serve the purpose of coaching it may be observed that recorded videos that include interactive elements result in long term reinforced learning. Reiteration of concepts about strategies, new techniques, product details, and other useful information, when reinforced using interactive quizzes or Q& A sessions, can go a long way in memory retention. It should be noted that a live session can offer the same advantages however the concept of replay flexibility is an added advantage that recorded videos have.
Team building :
Team cohesion and dynamics are the victims of remote working and distributed workforce. However, videos lend to this crisis by enabling teams to come together even if the salesforce is cash strapped and distributed geographically. Because sessions can be recorded, on-demand videos can be made available for feedback, review, and comments. All this can happen without the problem of differing time zones filling the relational gaps of telephone and email. When it comes to knowledge transfer, videos are a real lifesaver.
Learn From Jeffrey :
If you are thinking of including video coaching in your sales training arsenal, this is the time. It cannot get any better because Hippo Video has launched an online video coaching program partnering with the King of Sales – Jeffrey Gitomer.
The best part of this program is you have full-length training videos where Jeffrey will be your coach taking you through various sales scenarios right from prospecting to closing, handling objections, negotiating, recording video email with the objective of improving performance and driving revenue and sales.
Before we say any further, we would like to sample the best for yourself.
How Video coaching helps you?
A short case study :
Brevet a sales consulting firm came up with a concept for its technology client to scale its sales effectiveness. They worked with their client company’s operation team to implement a new onboarding and skill training program leveraging their online PointForward platform.
This solution helped standardize the training model and improve sales coaching through the use of video feedback.
This approach shortened the length of the client’s live onboarding training session, generating meaningful hard cost savings while also decreasing ramp time for new hires. In addition, this program served as the foundation for a more formal sales enablement and operations function.
Peter Ostrow of SiriusDecisions says “video is well-suited to refining the human element of [B2B] selling. Younger generations are especially engaged with rich media such as video. This includes millennials, who will make up 75% of the U.S. workforce by 2025.”
Whether you are an individual sales rep or a manager, you can become a rainmaker in sales and build your sales team and consistently meet and exceed expectations. Video content can always become viral, they are shared a thousand times every second, it is searchable and secure. It has a great impact on your employees because it helps in retention and results.
With an array of advantages to video in your sales coaching, the only thing that will be short is if you miss to try it yourself. So why not record a video lesson and let us know how it went? Will you?
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