If you are mentoring a new inside sales or telemarketing rep, one of the key areas you may need to assist your new hire with is telephone sales confidence. Even some of your old pros may need a pep talk now and again. After all, Sales is a career where you hear “no” much more often than “yes.” So, what are the keys to instilling that confidence in your reps?
In my experience, I have seen phone agents meet and exceed quotas when managers help them lay the right foundation. Sales managers should take time to:
Train reps on product knowledge. “Fake it ‘til you make it” doesn’t work for everyone. Today’s savvy buyers are well informed before they even reach out to a sales representative. They will spot the holes in a rep’s product knowledge and lose trust in that rep as an informed advisor. If an inside sales agent finds himself fumbling on the phone, his confidence —and sales—will falter.
Define expectations and objectives. Douglas McGregor, a founding faculty member of MIT Sloan School of Management, developed a set of assumptions, Theory Y, about management, one of them being: “People will exercise self-direction and self-control in the service of objectives to which they are committed.” (source: http://guides.wsj.com/management/managing-your-people/how-to-motivate-employees/) Have you defined objectives for your sales reps? Representatives who understand campaign/sales objectives will commit and confidently pursue success. They will be less likely sidetracked or derailed during a sales call.
Provide the right tools. In addition to training and defining objectives, a manager needs to provide his or her sales team with the right tools to help them execute a productive and efficient sales call each time. Tools like call scripting and queue-based lead management software help keep your team focused and remove additional work that cripples productivity.
Help them understand the value of “no.” It’s important to role-play and train your team to handle objections. Sometimes “no” may represent an objection that is merely an opportunity to ask more insightful questions or provide more education to a buyer. Sometimes “no” just means “no” – and even those answers can be valued when compared to the time wasting tire kickers who don’t really plan to make a purchase at all. Help team members understand how to turn “no” into an opportunity rather than a rejection.
Regardless of your industry, there are core elements of telephone salesmanship that a manager can provide to his or her team. Let VanillaSoft help you build a team of confident sales by phone professionals with our award winning inside sales software for lead management. Start your VanillaSoft free trial today.