Although there are many different aspects of a sales transformation, a large component will be the training and development of human capital. When Sandler looks at the landscape for the 2020s, there are three groups to focus on.
1 – Experienced Salesperson: The most significant risk is the inability to shift mindset, and the group faces a rude awakening if they’re not willing to adapt. If you want to have sales success for 10 more years, getting comfortable in the virtual environment is priority #1. The group must set their ego aside, be uncomfortable and be willing to ask for help. Should you keep this group around? Maybe, if you can answer yes to these three questions:
- Are they team players, and do they fit your company’s (future) culture?
- Are they continuous learners and willing to leave their comfort zone to grow?
- Can we learn from them?
2 – Brand New Salespeople: The most considerable risk with this group is lack of real-world experience and getting lost inside an organization. This group could accidentally wear slippers to an in-person meeting. Challenges with onboarding brand new people and getting them up to speed are one of, if not the most common, challenges we hear from revenue leaders. How do we effectively onboard someone who works out of their parent’s basement? With corporations cutting development programs at a massive clip, what will the long-term impact be to new entrants to the workforce? We must adapt our process to the new reality; the old ways of working just got a lot older. When thinking about this group, some questions to ask yourself are:
- Do new hires know what information they need to learn? When they’re supposed to learn it? Where to find it? Do they understand what great looks like?
- What type of peer-to-peer learning takes place inside your organization?
- Are your newer salespeople consistently practicing or practicing in front of your customers?
3 – The Moveable Middle: This group has the most to gain and the best chance of moving the needle for a sales organization. This group was on-boarded years ago, has time in front of real-life clients, but is tech-savvy enough to have pivoted to the virtual environment with ease. These are your hybrid salespeople and future stars. They can seamlessly weave into virtual and in-room meetings, and unlike some of their more tenured colleagues – they embrace continuous learning. When evaluating this group thinks about:
- What is my process for identifying future leaders? Do we have leadership opportunities?
- How are we capturing the best practices of our best people?
- What is our plan to retain our best people?
These are just some of the lessons and findings of the last 12 months for Sandler. Sandler has been blown away by the resolve of sales leadership, managers, and salespeople throughout our client base. Sandler’s job is to support our clients in executing sales strategy – but it’s still their job to execute. Given the results we’ve seen thus far – we expect 2021 to pay handsome dividends for the hard work of the last 12 months.
Contact our Enterprise Team to learn more about sales process and skillset transformation.