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How to Prioritize Your Time as a Sales Manager

By Ray Makela

In this episode, we discuss how to use a prioritization system to stop spending too much time stuck on urgent tasks, and more time on what's important—like coaching your team.

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How to Teach your Sales Team to Solve Their Own Problems

By Ray Makela

Being your reps' chief problem solver is terrible for sales performance. Here's a technique you can use to train your team to solve their own problems.

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How to Hire the Right Sales Manager

By Norman Behar

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One of the most significant impediments to sales growth is hiring the right sales manager. Unfortunately, companies struggle with identifying the right people to manage and lead their sales teams. For companies with exceptionally high growth rates, the challenge is even more pronounced. Sales headcount growth drives the need to hire even more frontline managers.

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How to Plan Sales Meetings that Engage & Motivate Your Team

By David Jacoby

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If you’ve ever run a sales meeting, you probably know that most salespeople aren’t thrilled to attend. Good sales reps prefer to spend their time selling, not sitting in a conference room. After all, they can’t make quota daydreaming their way through a boring meeting.

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How to Effectively Set Clear Sales Team Expectations

By Norman Behar

Learn how to effectively communicate clear sales team expectations to ensure that your team understands what you want them to do and achieve.

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Managing Sales Behaviors to Improve Sales Performance

By Norman Behar

Managing sales performance is a fundamental sales management skill. Learn how to effectively manage sales behaviors to get your sales team to generate  great results consistently. 

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How to Manage Underperforming Sales Reps

By Norman Behar

A look into each of the characteristics top performing sales teams have in common. Watch this video to help your team achieve their full potential.

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3 Characteristics of a High Performing Sales Team

By Norman Behar

A look into each of the characteristics top performing sales teams have in common. Watch this video to help your team achieve their full potential.

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Can You Afford a Bad Sales Hire? Read This Now

By David Jacoby

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If you're a football fan, you're no doubt familiar with the woeful tale of Johnny Manziel’s brief professional football career. Manziel was a star college quarterback who won the Heisman trophy as a freshman in 2012. The Cleveland Browns later drafted him in the first round of the 2014 NFL draft, where he played for two injury-prone seasons in 2014-2015.

Manziel’s time at Cleveland was plagued by questions about his behavior, work ethic, substance abuse, off-the-field problems, as well as his inability to translate his college game to the professional level. The impact on the Cleveland Browns was catastrophic. They wasted a precious first round draft pick as well as lost time and money. Here is a description of how he hurt Cleveland as well as a litany of his bad behavior

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How to Become a Great Sales Leader

By David Jacoby

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As a sales manager, you may not consider yourself a sales leader. After all, strategic leadership issues fall within the purview of senior executives such as the Chief Revenue Officer. But ask your sales team to describe your leadership qualities and you may hear comments such as “She knows how to communicate what she wants,” “He makes the right decisions at the right time,” “She’s very persuasive,” or “He works twice as hard as anybody else on the team.”

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How To Help Reps Keep Their Pipeline Up-To-Date

By Ray Makela

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Since the day the first contact management systems added features to enable Reps to keep track of their opportunities, there has been a constant struggle between manager and sales rep to keep the pipeline clean and “update the damn CRM.” Management wants a roll-up of their reps’ pipelines to enable better visibility and produce accurate forecasts, while reps are not motivated to spend precious selling time on administrative tasks and data entry that doesn’t help them close business.

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Why Sales Managers Fail at Coaching?

By Norman Behar

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The reason is pretty simple. Managers become accustomed to telling as opposed to enabling their salespeople to identify and solve their own problems. Consider these two typical situations:

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How to Knock Your Next Sales Interview Out of the Park

By Ray Makela

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Attention prospective salespeople—here’s a hint. If you want to work on my sales team, you have to show me you can sell.
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The Importance of Sales Coaching Models for Better Results

By Norman Behar

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In our 2017 Sales Management Research Report, 5 Hallmarks of a High-Impact Sales Organization, we found that sales managers at high-performing organizations spent significantly more time coaching their teams than average and lower performing teams.

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Six Sales Coaching Activities That Will Set You Apart As a Coach

By Ray Makela

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Sales coaching is one of the most important activities a manager can do to improve the performance of their sales team, as evidenced by the 2017 Sales Management Research Report.  Yet managers often confuse sales coaching with just having one-on-one meetings and telling their reps how to improve. At the heart of good sales coaching is a mindset that encourages the rep to take responsibility for their development and engage in a collaborative, positive process of improvement. This involves key sales coaching activities that are different than other things you may be doing to direct, manage or motivate your team.

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One Additional Question Salespeople Should Always Ask

By Norman Behar

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I was sitting down with our Chief Customer Officer, Ray Makela, and we were discussing deal coaching.  I reminded him of his blog post on 5 Deal Coaching Questions for Sales Managers to Ask and he made a very interesting point about a sixth question he now wants to add to this list; What's the decision making process? 

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Most Important Sales Metrics You Should Track Every Month

By Ray Makela

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How many new appointments does it take to hit your sales quota?
 
Sales Managers have access to more tools, reports, and data about sales performance than ever before. Yet with this proliferation of information, it's harder to analyze and extract meaningful insights.
 
As a frontline sales manager or leader, the first question you need to ask is, why are you tracking these things? What's the outcome are you looking for? What's the purpose of doing this?
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Sales Pipeline vs. Sales Forecast: What's the Difference

By Norman Behar

Although the sales pipeline and sales forecast are closely related, they're not the same. In this Q&A, we explain the difference and best practices you can use to make the most of each.

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Sales Rep Turnover: Why It Happens and How to Reduce It

By Norman Behar

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According to an article in the July – August 2017 issue of the Harvard Business Review, How to Predict Turnover on Your Sales Team, “estimates of annual turnover among U.S. salespeople run as high as 27%.”  This is an alarming rate especially given how challenging it is to hire top sales talent in a tight labor market.

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2017 State of Sales Management Training Research Report

By Alonso Chehade

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Our new report confirms the importance of developing sales managers to improve sales performance. This is something that the principals of the Sales Readiness Group already knew from their work with hundreds of sales organizations. 

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Sales Management Tips to Increase Sales Team Productivity

By Norman Behar

Part of managing performance is to have a more productive sales team. In this Q&A video, we share five techniques you can use to increase sales team productivity.

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Key Considerations Before Promoting Your Best Salesperson

By Norman Behar

On this episode, we discuss key considerations before promoting your best salesperson into management. The different skill set required to be a great sales manager, and how to set new managers up for success.

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Sales Metrics You Should Track Every Month

By Ray Makela

On this episode, we discuss how to approach selecting which sales metrics to track, the importance of using leading vs. lagging indicators, and which key metrics you should focus on to improve the performance of your sales team.

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How to Find and Hire Great Sales Managers

By Norman Behar

On this episode, Kim Rody asks: How do you find great sales managers? In this video, we discuss key considerations before hiring a sales manager. Then we also go over important sales management skills to look for to find the best person for the job. 

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Managing a Healthy Sales Pipeline: Why Less Is More

By Ray Makela

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For many sales teams, a full sales pipeline is reassuring. It means their salespeople have plenty of potential deals to follow up on and lots of calls to make. It gives them hope that many of deals will close before the end of the quarter.

Yet, often at the end of the quarter, a good percentage of those deals haven’t closed— and everyone ends up disappointed. What went wrong?

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Six Questions to Coach a Gritty Sales Team

By Ray Makela

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I’ve written before about Angela Lee Duckworth’s concept of “grit,” which she discussed in her popular TED talk, “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance.” Duckworth defines grit as a winning combination of passion and perseverance, and she found that this quality is high among very successful people (including salespeople).

How do passion and perseverance manifest as behaviors among salespeople? As a manager, you’ve probably noticed the grittiest members of your sales team tend to do the following.

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How to Manage, Coach, and Lead a Remote Sales Team

By Norman Behar

In this episode, our CEO Norman Behar shares best practices for managing a remote sales team. A challenge that sales managers have struggled with for years. Norman discusses the impact technology has had on the sales management function and shares techniques you can use to manage, coach, and lead a remote sales team.

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5 Items to Improve Your Sales Meeting Agenda

By Ray Makela

On this episode, Kenneth Vogt, owner at Vera Claritas asks: What do you cover in your weekly sales meetings? If you have a weekly meeting with your sales team, what is regularly on the sales meeting agenda? What is useful to you as a manager? What is useful to your salespeople?

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How to Use Technology in Sales to Improve Performance

By Norman Behar

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Today, many sales managers and sales teams are almost constantly connected to their screens, devices, apps, and online tools. While these technologies are designed to improve sales effectiveness, I see two potential pitfalls when it comes to the proliferation of technology and selling.

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Who's Responsible for the Sales Forecast?

By Norman Behar

On this episode, Mel Harding, VP of Product Marketing at Occulus, Inc. asks: Who's ultimately responsible for the sales forecast, the sales rep or the sales manager? 

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