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20 May 2019 / durhamlane

Why Sales Coaching is Essential for Success

Sean Ball

by Sean Ball

sales training

Read time: 3 minutes

Sales is the be all and end all of every business.

If you aren’t focused on sales growth, you don’t have a business – you have a hobby.

All colleagues (especially those in sales) cannot shy from that fact.

But, irrespective of whether you have ‘trainer’, ‘coach’ or even ‘manager’ in your job title, we all have a pivotal role to play in coaching our sales colleagues to unlock their true potential.

It is our responsibility to provide both sales and non-sales colleagues with constructive criticism when it comes to having commercial conversations. This helps to direct them down a path of continual improvement, progression and success. 

Consider these stats:

74% of sales leaders say coaching is more important than ever before.

Yet, 73% of sales leaders spend less than 5% of their time coaching.

So, why is it that so many sales leaders struggle to provide sufficient coaching to their sales teams?

Often, it’s because of a lack of time, skill and desire. It’s easy to get stuck looking at your feet.

However, to scale a business effectively and consistently, you must support your colleagues to have commercial conversations to increase performance of Process, and build Pipeline. 

Our proven Selling at a Higher Level methodology coaching has allowed countless numbers of both sales and non-sales people over the years, to recognise their strengths and improve their weaknesses. 

Implementing our proven approach and techniques, participants can build on strengths and work on weaknesses, to become better salespeople and successfully scale up sales, revenues and profits.

Our Director of Consulting and Learning, Alison Freer, recently participated as guest speaker on a webinar organised by the Association of Professional Sales, titled:

 ‘Getting over ‘no time for sales coaching’- why it’s simply essential for sales success.’

Ideal for members of management, senior staff or simply keen team-players, the webinar highlights the importance of micro-interactions, insightful behavioural feedback, and a simple coaching format to efficiently coach sales teams, to high performance.

But, how?

durhamlane stands by Centre for Creative Leadership’s, 70-20-10: Sales success through feedback.

Alison explains the idea that:

  • 70% of learning is through hands-on experience
  • 20% is through social learning, being coached and mentoring others, and
  • 10% of learning structured formal educational events.

Our sales coaching is unique and contains a blend of these three learning types.

A combination of all three is proven to set the foundations and tools to get salespeople on the right path, to becoming expert sellers who add long-term value.

Alison states that we take it even further.  

durhamlane recognises that star performers are those who not only bring out the best in their own sales performance, but equally in others.

Yes, we challenge the ‘Lone Wolf’ of the pack.

Often the highest performing salesperson delivering financial results, these so called ‘Lone Wolves’ can sometimes become too focused on their own success, and struggle to bring out the best in others.

By utilising micro-interaction coaching moments, salespeople are empowered with the key sales skills necessary to accelerate growth.

Such micro-interactions, abide by the following rules:4:1 ratio of strengths to developments

  • 4:1 ratio of strengths to developments
  • Praise in public
  • Question-based approach

And how do these work?

Well, there is a distinct correlation between the impact of coaching moments and the quantity of them, to receiving positive business performance. This also links to our Mantra #5: Quality x Quantity x Consistency= High Performance.

Providing feedback on a 4:1, positive to negative ratio, instigates a more receptive response, and we encourage this kind of praise to be made publicly.

Proven to have a high impact, this is something we call brain-friendly feedback.

Additionally, a question-led approach correlates with our Mantra #3: Be Interested to Be Interesting.

What does this do exactly, to unlock average Joe’s sales potential?

Based on the ideology that coaching and feedback helps people to focus on the advantages that come with self-improvement, inevitably, an increase in commercial success should follow.

And through our (many years of) experience, we have learnt that a combination of the above mentoring, alongside a proven coaching programme is key.

Inarguably, sales teams respond better to coaching delivered by an external, independent expert.

Because let’s face it, no one wants to feel under surveillance by the very person who is responsible for their next (possibility of) promotion. External coaching for your teams, can be the best option.

But only when the time is right.

As James Kerr once said, ‘When you’re on top of your game, change your game.’

Coaching mustn’t commence from a place of negativity. It must stem from a place of growth and improvement. 

Our methodology strongly resonates with this.

As sales people first, trainers second, we strive to help our mentees accelerate growth, build pipeline and generate revenues.

How many more deals could your salespeople close if they had regular coaching?

Imagine how effectively your sales team could overcome challenges if they had an independent expert who they trust?

Why not try our new Sales Coaching Passport? It’s a rolling monthly* coaching service that ensures your sales people improve performance.

If you want to improve the success of your sales team, you really should consider Sales Coaching with Europe’s fastest-growing, acceleration company. Please contact us for an exploratory and confidential call, today +44 (0)191 481 3800.

Back to Blog

Webinar- Getting over ‘no time for sales coaching’

Getting over 'no time for sales coaching'


Key takeaways: How to turn micro-interactions with your team into impactful coaching moments; A coaching format that’s as simple as 1-2-3-4; The power of insightful behavioural feedback that leaves everyone clear and confident about how to improve performance.

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