While the business world is trying to return to normal post lockdown, it may not quite be business as usual. We have all been through a difficult period with many changes and challenges, from changes to our working patterns and environments to returning to a different and difficult market.

Although we are all trying our best to navigate the new landscape after lockdown, many businesses may be struggling to see a light at the end of the tunnel and have issues motivating employees. So how can businesses focus their sales teams post lockdown to not only survive but thrive?

Let’s take a look at some of the key area’s businesses can target to help focus and motivate their sales teams.

How do they feel?
Good leadership is driven by the connection to your team, as individuals and collectively. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many sales teams going through a mentally tough period of inactivity, which may have caused anxiety and insecurities.

It’s important that your business has structures in place to help you engage with your team on a 1-2-1 basis either weekly or fortnightly whether remotely or face-to-face. This not only gives you the opportunity to see how they are feeling but also provides an opportunity to talk about their objectives and how you can support them to achieve them.

Different and difficult market
Today’s market post lockdown looks very different from the one we had before COVID-19. There’s no denying that it has changed significantly and that it’s a much more difficult market compared to one at the beginning of 2020.

But that’s not to say you cannot still have a successful Q3 and beyond. Your sales teams should be contacting and reviewing existing clients and agreeing delivery schedules with them to assure them you are fully operational and ready to continue supporting them.

Speak to your clients about their needs and consider if there is anything you can do to go the extra mile to help address them. Encourage your sales team to guide your business with sourcing new clients and markets, but you shouldn’t neglect your core offering and should focus on doing this well.

Refine and refocus skills
Make sure your team’s core focus is on doing the basics well by refining current skills to refocus on key deliverables. If there are any skills gaps, consider investing in training such as interactive problem-solving workshops that provide workable solutions and objectives. Where this training is bespoke to your business, the solutions will be more swiftly and effectively transferred into the ‘key deliverables / milestones’ within your recruitment process.

If you are considering employee training look at complete training courses for new skills rather than refresher courses to brush up their existing skills. Bringing new skills to the team can help inform your strategy and explore new techniques.

Perform a dynamic update on agreed Personal Development plans and ask your teams for feedback on skills they feel they are lacking or would like to develop. This then can be used in the Planning and Objective Setting stages of the Training Program.

Recognition and rewards
You will likely already have standard commission and reward structures in place but consider introducing an additional scheme until the end of December 2020 that recognises and rewards strong performances in a difficult market.

This recognition should also include delivering on your team’s individual developmental milestones and progression. It’s good for morale, motivation and performance if your teams know that their skills and career development are as important to the business as they are to them personally.

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