How Do I Know if I Have the Right Salespeople?
Updated: Jan 11
Your industry is booming but is your revenue growing enough to hit your goals? You’ve been questioning for quite some time whether you have the right salespeople in place to really take your business to the next level. Sure, they know the industry and generally hit their numbers, but you keep asking yourself, “Could they do better? Or, would someone else be a better fit? Furthermore, am I providing them with the tools they need to succeed?”
The million-dollar question, “How do I know if I have the right salespeople on my team?” is not one to be avoided, especially when your focus is shifting to capitalizing on the renewed and recovering market. It’s time for you to assess whether you have the right players to move your business forward and if your company has the correct sales structure in place to help your team achieve heightened levels of success.
To answer this critical question for yourself, there are four key areas you should look at:
The activity of your sales team.
The attitude your salespeople exhibit.
How you or your sales leader is managing your team.
The structure of your sales organization.
While reviewing sales activity is the obvious starting point, it’s important to understand the importance of not gauging activity on a stringent, one-size-fits-all scale. All businesses have different activity contributors of success, so you'll want to focus in on sales activities and results in your environment that align with your defined formula for success.
Some of the factors you may want to consider when looking at your salespeople’s activities are:
Are my salespeople moving prospects and leads into the next stage of my sales pipeline? Focus on the quality of their activities rather than quantity.
Is my sales team performing at a level that allows them to hit properly positioned sales quotas?
Are they willing to put in the work that’s needed to move past obstacles and be successful?
Are they skilled enough? If not, am I willing to invest in their development to help them evolve?
Once you’ve determined that their activities are moving in the right direction, you’ll want to look at how your salespeople interact with those around them. To create a positive and successful sales culture, you need to have the right attitudes on your frontline.
This doesn’t necessarily mean your salespeople need to be upbeat, gregarious cheerleaders; in fact, successful salespeople can have a wide range of personality styles. The common thread tends to be a mindset that drives productive outcomes internally and externally.
To assess this area, evaluate their approach to problems and obstacles.
Do they have a can-do attitude?
Are they problem-solvers?
Do they seek out help when difficult roadblocks are encountered?
Have you ever heard the phrase, “One bad apple can spoil the bunch”? The same is true for team members. It’s important to remember that high-performing salespeople with negative outlooks often do more harm than good.
Management of Your Team
Even the most experienced salespeople need help navigating through difficult barriers. This is where sales leadership comes into play. When determining whether or not your management practices are suitable, answer the following questions:
Is your team being managed effectively?
Am I offering my team timely and adequate coaching feedback?
Am I (or my sales leaders) routinely engaged in sales calls with each member of the team to ensure they are effectively navigating their sales opportunities?
Have I been holding my salespeople accountable to bring out the best in them?
Keep in mind that it can be difficult for even the best salesperson to find their way without solid management engagement. As I mentioned in my previous article, “Why Can’t I Find the Right Salespeople?”, hands-on sales leadership is a key component in setting your salespeople up for success.
Sales Organizational Structure
You might want to look at the structure of your sales organization if you feel that your salespeople are working hard, working smart, have the right attitudes, and your management practices are sound.
In other words, are your salespeople equipped for the current market environment? With everything that's happened over the past several years, you might be functioning in an entirely different climate.
The process your sales team was using before may no longer be the path to success.
The shift from in-person to primarily virtual and remote sales may have altered the techniques necessary to sell in the current environment.
Your buyer and customer personas may have changed.
So, when it comes to sales org structure, ask yourself the following questions:
Is my sales strategy adapted to what’s currently happening in the marketplace?
Have I reassessed our sales process recently and realigned it as necessary?
Am I giving my team the right tools to find success in this ever-changing environment?
How to Get Started?
Ultimately, knowing if you have the right salespeople in place can be tricky. As you can see, multiple factors come into play when assessing your players. And in all honesty, I’ve only scratched the surface.
If you’d like to discuss assessing your sales team in more detail or chat about the improvement you’re looking for in your business, contact me at email@example.com.
I also invite you to connect with me on LinkedIn to gain exposure to future article posts that will offer more valuable selling insights.
I am part of a national group of Senior Sales Leaders who collaborate to share insights like the examples shown in this article. We formed because of our shared passion to help business leaders exponentially grow their revenue.