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Influencers Invited Sales Blog

The Biggest Mistake Sales Managers Make

If I were to ask you what the most important thing a sales manager can do to drive business, what would your answer be? Hire the right reps to begin with? Properly train them? Keep them motivated? Help them close deals? I’m sure you thought of these and many others, but I wonder if you thought about the one activity I’m going to share with you today.

That activity is to monitor and ensure adherence to best practice selling techniques. You see, in a nutshell a sales manager’s job is to give his/her team the most effective core selling skills or best practice techniques, and then monitor to make sure their team is using them on each and every call.

It’s like a professional sports coach. What do they do? They design the best plays and then coach each athlete to use the best techniques and skill sets on every play. That’s why they study and break down game film so much.

It’s the same with recording calls. As sales managers your most important job is listening to (monitoring) your sales reps during the sales process to make sure they are using the most effective skills. The bottom line is that if they aren’t making their numbers, it’s almost always because they are delivering poor presentations to unqualified leads. And that is a direct result of not using best practice core selling skills.

So…the biggest mistake sales managers make is monitoring and measuring the results (the revenue numbers) rather than the sales process itself (the actual skills used to drive those results).

If you want to improve the sales performance of your sales team, then you need to stay focused on and monitor what is driving those results – what your reps are saying and doing during their qualifying and closing presentations.

And here’s how you do that:

Start scoring adherence to your scripts (or outlines or presentations, etc.). Break down each script into sections and assign a number value to them that add up to 100. Then listen to the recordings of your reps and score their adherence to following the script. Anything under a 90% adherence and you’re got work to do.

Bottom line – by staying focused on the most important part of the sale – adherence to best practices – you’ll avoid the biggest mistake most sales managers make, and in turn you’ll become one of the few managers whose team actually make their revenue numbers.

How great would that be?

About the author

Do you have an underperforming inside sales team? Talk to Mike to see how he can help you and your team reach your revenue goals. To learn more about Mike, visit his website: