There are a lot of roadblocks sales professionals will likely encounter when attempting to initiate a pitch. Many consumers are not interested in engaging customer service representatives, be it in person, on the phone or online, and have taken to shopping remotely or through handheld devices to avoid these kinds of interaction. Overcoming these barriers requires innovative advertising, clearer communication and coaching personnel to remain resilient in the face of reluctant clientele.
Sticking to the core
Sales coaching needs to remain straightforward and deal with the difficulties that professionals are most likely to encounter on a daily basis. According to expert coach Gary Michels, improving employee skills and overall sales success requires remaining true to basic principles and providing a clear and unified message. Companies should also actively encourage their staff to maintain a high energy level and a positive outlook, since attitude and demeanor can have a significant impact on how receptive consumers will be to a pitch. Fine-tuning the approach should become a primary focus, Michels explained, especially when market factors are somewhat less favorable for business. This means encouraging better performance through training, skills assessment and motivational support.
"Implementing the strategies of top salespeople isn't rocket science, but it isn't easy either," he said at a recent coaching event. "You have to be consistent and remain motivated."
Promoting the right mentality
Michels spoke recently at a sales training event for a leading real estate company in San Francisco. That company's senior vice president, Doug Wulf, added that sales professionals need to feel like they can be successful no matter what obstacles they encounter. Leaders and managers should foster this kind of outlook in all of their sales coaching sessions, convincing personnel that they are capable of being the best. As Wulf explained, putting in extra hours may sometimes be necessary in order to hit specific revenue targets, but for top performers this will be seen as dedication to the job rather than as a hardship.
Even when markets fluctuate or consumer confidence flags, managers should rely on consistent sales training to keep all personnel on the right track. Though some clients may not be interested in hearing a sales pitch the first time, staying resilient when turned away by one potential customer will ensure that the next pitch is just as honest and vigorous.