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About This Episode
How do you become the next Jimi Hendrix of sales?
You might research some tips from the current superstar of sales.
Maybe you watch a keynote he or she delivered. Or subscribe to their podcast.
Or maybe you have an excellent coach.
We had the opportunity to discuss three ideas with Waylon, including
- The biggest mistakes new reps make
- Coaching a new sales rep
- Learning from success versus failure
Let’s dive in.
The biggest mistakes new sales reps make
Being brand new on the job can be severely intimidating. Especially if the rest of the company is counting on you to bring in customers. There’s pressure right from the get-go.
Waylon understands this feeling completely. He’s seen a lot of new and unexperienced reps come through the doors of Indeed and has found a few commonalities in nearly all of them.
- Monologuing. New sales reps tend to talk too much when they’re on the phone with prospects. It might be a natural reaction to simply being nervous. Nonetheless, it’s a characteristic that needs to be adjusted.
While sitting in on sales calls, Waylon oftentimes hears new reps over-promoting the product or service and asking only a few questions. When questions are asked by the reps, they many times fill in with suggested answers, making it hard for the person on the other end to add anything. Sales reps should have engaging questions that allow the prospect to ponder and respond thoughtfully.
- Not preparing enough. Waylon sees new sales reps eager to get on the phone and show what they can do. One issue that they commonly run in to, however, is being underprepared to speak with an actual human being.
The rep’s responses are often delayed and choppy when they’re asked a question they haven’t prepared for. This can immediately turn the prospect off to any future business with your company. Sales reps should have quick, helpful responses and understand what they’re going to discuss before the call even begins.
Successfully coaching a new sales rep
New reps are going to make mistakes. It’s unavoidable. Luckily, you can still guide them by demonstrating what a successful sales call looks like.
Before getting on the phone, Waylon helps his reps prepare for difficult questions through role-playing. Having a good idea of what they’re going to say before the question is asked will encourage confidence in your new reps. Plus, the collaboration involved in role-playing is great for team-building.
Once it’s time to pick up the phone, Waylon sits in on the call to offer assistance wherever the conversation starts to go awry. He suggests the best way to do this is to introduce himself as a resource for any questions he might have an insight into. This adds value to the call for the prospect and helps the employee-supervisor relationship seem more like a partnership.
Moreover, Waylon being involved in the calls allows the new rep to learn by succeeding as opposed to learning by failure.
Learning from success rather than failure
Waylon recognizes that many lessons can be learned from failing. But, at the same time, those lessons can be gained from succeeding, as long as the success is examined.
Whether you succeed or fail, there will be an emotion tied to that particular memory. For his team of reps, Waylon rather have that be a feeling of pride than despair. It’s for this reason that he supports and encourages his team in any way he can.
For Waylon, it’s worth the extra effort to see new sales reps grow in confidence.
Coaching for success
Being an encouraging coach and an advocate for your sales reps can mean more than you know. At some point, the training wheels will have to come off. But, while they’re still finding their way, coaching through successes could be the best route for your team.
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