Rural Sales Managers: Why You Need To Stop Managing By Spreadsheet

 In Rural Sales Training

Your rural sales team are people not resource units. Like high-performance sports coaches, you need to know what makes each member of your team tick. 

Spreadsheets are a lag indicator not a lead indicator. 

And leading is about dialing into the specific characteristics of each member of your team:

– what motivates them the most?
– what are their life goals?
– what was their experience prior to joining your company?
– what was their last boss like?
– what do you need to be aware of?
– what fears, concerns or anxieties do they have?
– what do they want to achieve most?
– what do they want to work on?
– what is their family make-up and background?

You can only find out these things when you take the time to connect and have a safe, open and honest conversation with your cohort.

When you do this they are far more likely to put the hard yards in because they know you care and have their back. 

When they know you have the best interests at heart and go into bat for them you will get a great performance. 

If they don’t feel safe they won’t express their fears or concerns through fear of being reprimanded or perhaps belittled publicly in front of their peers. 

A true coaching conversation requires the following ingredients:

Care factor – show them, don’t tell them by the sincere intent of your questions (they will know if you’re paying lip service)
Openness – be open and be willing to self-disclose your own stories or challenges
Agreement – make sure you collectively make agreements on what needs to be done
Conscientious – take the time, don’t re-schedule 1:1s and make the effort to do the little things right
Help – set them up to succeed. Show them what good looks like 

Managing your team by numbers is not enough.

You have to dig deeper into the psyche of your team to show them that you care about them as individuals. 

All humans are wired emotionally so make sure you are tuned into your team. 

If you can see someone struggling or stressed, proactively help them, show them, train them and encourage them. 

We call this coaching. 

A good coach makes time for coaching and training their team, and managing by spreadsheet is not coaching.

Spreadsheets are an outcome of inputs because people execute spreadsheets, not spreadsheets themselves.

Assumptions are made with many different scenarios and the only way to predictably and consistently secure the right outcomes is to focus on the right inputs through continual coaching conversations. 

Whilst spreadsheets can tell you a bit as a decision support tool, people can tell you much more because you can work out the decisions they are making and why. 

That way you can train them to think for themselves and make better decisions that ultimately look good on your sales spreadsheet

Spend less time on your spreadsheets and more time training with your team.

You will be well rewarded for that. 

PS. Enjoy these articles? Then you’ll ❤️ my newPodcastfor inspiration on self-mastery, marketing, sales and mindset. Let me and my guests keep you company and inspire you on your work trips and convert your truck time.  

P.P.S. For more information, tips, tools and techniques like this make sure you download many of our free resources at: www.ruralsalessuccess.com 

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