Leadership Styles Differ Based on the Situation: Sales Growth vs. Sales Recovery 

Leadership Styles Differ Based on the Situation: Sales Growth vs. Sales Recovery 

By Sean O’Shaughnessey & Kevin Lawson

As B2B-focused businesses navigate the ever-changing landscape of a post-COVID economy, sales leaders must adopt and institute strategies to meet the demands of a business in growth or recovery mode. 

While the goal for a sales organization may be to sustain the growth trajectory aligned with organizational goals, the year-over-year approach to achieving success can vary significantly. Sales leadership styles depend on the current situation, the starting point, and the existing team charged to accomplish the goal. Good sales leaders find a way to achieve the annual goal; great sales leaders find ways to achieve the goal and systemize the process to allow for repeatable growth, pivots, and rapid scale.      

Growth Focused Leadership

Sales leaders focused on growth must proactively identify new market opportunities, verticals, geographies, platforms, or sales talent. They must invest in new sales channels and technologies, along with onboarding and training programs to support the growth of their sales teams and the acquisition of new client relationships.

When sales teams are in a breakout stage of growth, it can be challenging to gain the discipline to systems and alignment on processes and approaches due to the nature of managing client expectations on a wildly rising revenue outlook. This situation demands that all of the skills of a sales leader be applied consistently and strategically across the team and sales practices.  

Seasoned leaders know that hiring for an increased workload and rapidly scaling teams can be tempting. However, this approach can often lead to problems down the line. Further, we must suppress the desire to hire quickly instead of exercising patience in finding the right candidate to continue to scale teams and culture appropriately. That patience means we must endure the short-term challenges of being under-resourced and under a great deal of pressure to keep performing as if we already had the resources on the team.  Instead, it is essential to focus on finding the right candidate who will not only be able to handle the current workload but also contribute to your team’s culture and help your organization achieve long-term success. Take the time to vet candidates carefully and consider not only their skills and experience but also their values and how they fit into your team’s dynamic. By prioritizing quality over speed, you’ll set your team up for success in the long run.

Another important consideration when building a team is to prioritize scalability. It’s easy to get caught up in your organization’s immediate needs and hire for the present moment, but it’s crucial to think about how your team will grow and evolve. Look for candidates with the potential to take on new responsibilities and leadership roles as your organization expands. Consider investing in training and professional development programs to help your team members acquire new skills and stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends. By prioritizing scalability, you’ll be better equipped to adapt to changing business needs and continue to achieve success over the long term.

Discipline to proven systems is essential for leadership and having transparent KPIs and organizational goal communications. The rigor and discipline of a sales leader in a growth cycle are particularly demanding. One primary concern for leaders in this mode is talent loss due to competitive pressures to grab your resources for their growth. It would help if you had experience and discipline for these growth moments.

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Fractional Executives Are Better Than Consultants For Driving Valuable Changes in Small Businesses

Fractional Executives Are Better Than Consultants For Driving Valuable Changes in Small Businesses

Change is inevitable, and small business owners must constantly adapt to stay ahead of their competition. While traditional consultants may offer valuable insights and recommendations, they often lack the hands-on commitment to implement these changes effectively. A consultant will write a report and presentation to advise management of required changes and then count on management to deploy the advice effectively. More than a report or playbook is usually needed to drive tangible results.

Enter the concept of a fractional executive. This innovative solution provides small businesses the strategic guidance and support they need to grow and evolve. In this blog post, we’ll explore the role of a fractional executive, discuss their benefits, and share tips for finding the right fit for your business.

A fractional executive is a seasoned professional who offers expertise and leadership on a part-time or project basis. These individuals often have extensive experience in their respective fields and can fill critical gaps in a company’s leadership team. From acting as a temporary CEO to guiding sales or financial strategies, fractional executives provide services tailored to your business’s unique needs.

The critical difference between a fractional executive and a traditional consultant lies in their level of commitment. While consultants often deliver a one-time report or set of recommendations, fractional executives are actively involved in the day-to-day operations of your business. They work closely with your team to implement changes, monitor progress, and adjust strategies as needed, ensuring that your business thrives in the long term.

Consultants can create beautiful reports using modern tools like Chat GPT. While a report generated by Chat GPT can provide valuable insights and recommendations for a business, it is crucial to recognize that such a report alone is insufficient to drive meaningful changes. To successfully implement and manage the recommended changes, businesses require a more hands-on and personalized approach that addresses their unique challenges and opportunities. A report can serve as an excellent starting point, but companies must invest in dedicated human expertise to ensure that the proposed changes are effectively integrated into their operations.

A Chat GPT report may be insufficient for driving change because it cannot fully account for the intricacies and nuances of each business. While AI-generated reports can be well-researched and informative, they may need a more profound understanding of company culture, team dynamics, and specific market conditions necessary to develop tailored strategies. On the other hand, a human expert can work closely with stakeholders, employees, and customers to gain a comprehensive understanding of the business’s unique needs and challenges, allowing them to develop and implement more effective change initiatives.

Additionally, change management requires ongoing support and guidance, which a Chat GPT report or an absentee consultant cannot provide. Implementing changes often involves overcoming obstacles, refining strategies, and addressing unforeseen issues that arise during the process. A human expert, such as a fractional executive, can provide the necessary support and adaptability to navigate these challenges and ensure the success of the change initiatives. By working closely with the business daily, they can monitor progress, identify areas for improvement, and make real-time adjustments to keep the change process on track.

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Unlocking Your Company’s Potential: The Power of a Strong Sales Organization in Driving Revenue Growth and Boosting Valuation

Unlocking Your Company’s Potential: The Power of a Strong Sales Organization in Driving Revenue Growth and Boosting Valuation

A strong sales organization is the cornerstone of any successful business. The sales team serves as the company’s lifeblood, driving revenue growth and ensuring long-term financial stability. When a company prepares for a merger, acquisition, or public offering, having a strong sales team can translate into a higher valuation. 

A strong sales organization is the backbone of a thriving business, as it directly impacts revenue generation. When a company’s sales team is well-organized, well-trained, and motivated, they become more effective in closing deals and fostering relationships with clients. This increased effectiveness leads to more sales, ultimately resulting in higher revenues and profits for the company.

By investing in a strong sales organization, businesses can capitalize on opportunities and achieve maximum value. The best sales organizations have a proven track record of success. These teams have established a consistent sales process, streamlined communication channels, and aligned with the company’s overall business goals.

A successful sales team is crucial for driving revenue growth. The following factors contribute to a sales organization’s ability to increase revenues and profits:

  1. A clear sales strategy
  2. A process-oriented approach
  3. High-quality sales training and coaching
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Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Selling Yourself: The Importance of Personal Branding in Sales – A Conversation With Megan O’Hara – Episode 26

Two Tall Guys Talking Sales Podcast – Selling Yourself: The Importance of Personal Branding in Sales – A Conversation With Megan O’Hara – Episode 26

Kevin and Sean continue to discuss the importance of staying relevant to customers and prospects.

In the first part of the podcast, Sean interviews Megan O’Hara of EasyIT about the challenges of reaching customers in the digital age, where everyone is bombarded with emails and messages. They discuss the importance of being authentic, providing value, and standing out from the competition. They also emphasize the need for salespeople to adapt to changing technology and stay up to date with new tools and platforms. They touch upon topics such as personal branding, content creation, and the role of social media in sales. Megan does this by sending out her video series called Mondays with Megan, and she goes into detail about how this helps her grow her business.

In the second part of the podcast, Kevin and Sean praise sales professional Megan for her effective approach to engaging with prospects and customers. They highlight the value of her short, actionable tips and tricks, which immediately benefit to her listeners. They also discuss the importance of constantly learning and improving, regardless of age or experience. They end the podcast by emphasizing the three things that every salesperson sells: their product, company, and themselves.

Overall, the podcast provides valuable insights and tips for sales professionals on how to stay relevant, provide value, and engage with customers in the digital age. It emphasizes the importance of authenticity, personal branding, and continuous learning and improvement. The podcast also highlights the potential impact of short, actionable content in driving customer engagement and business growth.

Sales Coaching: A Key Tool for Achieving Business Growth in B2B Sales

Sales Coaching: A Key Tool for Achieving Business Growth in B2B Sales

Sales coaching has become integral to the modern business environment, particularly in business-to-business (B2B) sales. The sales coaching process enhances salespeople’s skills, knowledge, and capabilities to achieve their goals, deliver value to customers, and improve organizational performance. In this article, we will examine the importance of sales coaching in B2B sales organizations, explore the best practices for effective coaching, and discuss the key benefits that result from a well-executed sales coaching program.

Sales coaching has become increasingly critical to the success of B2B sales organizations. Equipping salespeople with the skills, knowledge, and resources they need to deliver value to customers and drive business growth is essential. Here are three reasons why sales coaching is critical in B2B sales organizations.

Firstly, sales coaching helps salespeople to develop the necessary skills and knowledge to engage with customers, understand their goals or priorities, and provide tailored solutions. In a B2B sales environment, customers’ goals are often complex and unique, making it challenging to identify the best strategies for engaging with them. Effective sales coaching helps salespeople identify the most effective ways to engage with customers, build rapport, and establish trust. Through regular feedback and guidance, sales coaches can provide salespeople with insights on approaching different customer scenarios, offering valuable insights, and delivering a superior customer experience.

Sales coaching provides salespeople the necessary tools to improve their communication skills, such as active listening and effective questioning techniques. This active listening capability enables salespeople to understand customers’ unique goals and motivations better, allowing salespeople to provide tailored solutions that meet prospects’ expectations. This skill is essential in B2B sales organizations, where customers’ needs are complex and varied.

Secondly, sales coaching is essential for enhancing the performance of sales teams. Sales coaching helps salespeople to focus on their strengths and weaknesses, set clear goals, and develop strategies for achieving them. Coaching provides salespeople with performance feedback, identifies improvement areas, and provides guidance on addressing these areas. This, in turn, leads to improved sales performance, increased productivity, and higher levels of job satisfaction.

Effective sales coaching can help salespeople identify areas where they need to improve, such as their communication, time management, or presentation skills. Sales coaches can provide their teams with targeted feedback and guidance, offering practical solutions for improving performance. This not only helps salespeople to become more effective at their job, but it also helps them to feel more confident and engaged in their work.

Thirdly, sales coaching helps to create a culture of continuous learning within B2B sales organizations. Sales coaching enables salespeople to develop new skills, learn about new products and services, and keep up-to-date with industry trends. Continuous learning is vital for B2B sales organizations that operate in a dynamic and fast-paced environment, where the ability to adapt and learn quickly is essential for success.

Sales coaching allows salespeople to learn from their experiences and mistakes in a safe environment that doesn’t affect their revenue production. Sales coaches can guide how to approach different customer scenarios, offer valuable insights, and help salespeople to develop new skills. By fostering a culture of continuous learning, sales coaching can help B2B sales organizations to stay ahead of the curve and remain competitive in their industry.

Best Practices for Effective Sales Coaching

To ensure that sales coaching is effective, B2B sales organizations must adopt best practices aligned with their organizational goals and objectives. The following are some of the best practices for effective sales coaching:

  1. Provide Timely and Relevant Feedback: Feedback is critical to effective sales coaching. Managers and team members should provide feedback in a constructive manner that focuses on improvement rather than criticism. Feedback should be timely, relevant, and focused on specific behaviors or actions.
  2.  Focus on Skill Development: Effective sales coaching should focus on developing the skills and knowledge necessary for success in a B2B sales environment. This includes communication, negotiation, problem-solving, and product and industry knowledge.
  3.  Use a Coaching Framework: To ensure that sales coaching is consistent and effective, B2B sales organizations should use a coaching framework that provides a structured approach to coaching. A coaching framework should include a straightforward process for setting goals, giving feedback, and developing skills.
  4.  Measure and Evaluate Coaching Effectiveness: B2B sales organizations should measure and evaluate revenue generation to ensure that sales coaching is effective. This includes tracking sales performance metrics, such as revenue, customer satisfaction, and retention rates.

Critical Benefits of Sales Coaching in B2B Sales Organizations

Effective sales coaching can deliver a range of benefits to B2B sales organizations. The following are some of the key benefits that result from a well-executed sales coaching program:

  1. Improved Sales Performance: Effective sales coaching can lead to improved sales performance, increased productivity, and higher levels of job satisfaction. Sales coaching provides salespeople the necessary skills, knowledge, and support to achieve their sales goals and deliver customer value. This, in turn, leads to increased sales revenue, higher customer satisfaction, and higher customer retention.
  2.  Increased Employee Engagement: Sales coaching can help to increase employee engagement and motivation. When salespeople receive regular feedback, guidance, and support from their coaches, they feel more valued and invested in their work. This, in turn, leads to higher levels of job satisfaction and lower turnover rates.
  3.  Enhanced Customer Relationships: Effective sales coaching can help salespeople build stronger customer relationships. Sales coaching can help salespeople to identify customer needs, provide tailored solutions, and establish trust. This leads to stronger customer relationships, higher customer satisfaction, and greater customer loyalty.
  4.  Continuous Learning: Sales coaching helps create a continuous learning culture within B2B sales organizations. Sales coaching provides salespeople opportunities to learn new skills, develop their knowledge of products and services, and keep up-to-date with industry trends. This, in turn, leads to more significant innovation, improved performance, and competitive advantage.
  5.  Aligned Goals of the Company and the Team: By doing an adequate job of sales coaching, the salespeople are working toward the same goals as the company. This prevents wasted activities that don’t serve the purposes of the company. Let’s discuss this a bit more.

Setting Clear Goals and Objectives

Setting clear goals and objectives for salespeople is crucial to the success of any B2B sales organization. These goals and objectives provide a framework for salespeople to work within and help to focus their efforts on achieving specific outcomes. Here are some reasons why setting clear goals and objectives is essential for salespeople:

Setting Clear Goals and Objectives: Coaching provides a sense of direction and focus.

Setting clear goals and objectives helps salespeople to understand what they are working towards and what they need to do to achieve success. Having a sense of direction and focus is essential for salespeople as it helps them to prioritize their tasks, make informed decisions that align with their company’s needs, and stay motivated.

Setting Clear Goals and Objectives: Helps to measure progress and success.

Setting clear goals and objectives allows salespeople to measure their progress and success. This is important as it provides a sense of achievement and helps to maintain motivation. Tracking progress will enable salespeople to adjust their approach to get on track to meet their goals.

Setting Clear Goals and Objectives: Creates accountability.

Setting clear goals and objectives helps to create accountability for salespeople. When goals and objectives are clearly defined, salespeople are more likely to take ownership of their work and strive to achieve their targets. This sense of ownership and accountability helps create a performance culture and can increase job satisfaction and employee retention.

Setting Clear Goals and Objectives: Aligns salespeople with the organization’s overall objectives.

Setting clear goals and objectives ensures that salespeople align with the organization’s overall objectives. This alignment is crucial as it helps to ensure that everyone is working towards the same goal and that the organization is moving in the right direction, as defined by company leadership. This can help create a sense of purpose and meaning for salespeople, increasing motivation and engagement.

When setting goals and objectives for salespeople, it is essential to ensure that they are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. These SMART criteria help to ensure that goals and objectives are meaningful and actionable. Here are some tips for setting SMART goals and objectives for salespeople:

  • Be specific: Clearly define what you want salespeople to achieve, such as revenue targets or the number of new customers.
  •  Make them measurable: Ensure that goals and objectives are measurable so everyone can track their progress and adjustments can be made if necessary.
  •  Make them achievable: Set goals and objectives that are challenging but achievable. Setting unrealistic goals can lead to demotivation and disengagement.
  •  Make them relevant: Ensure that goals and objectives are relevant to the salesperson’s role and the organization’s overall objectives.
  •  Make them time-bound: Set a clear timeframe for achieving goals and objectives. This helps to create a sense of urgency and ensures that salespeople are focused on achieving their targets.

Effective sales coaching that includes setting clear goals and objectives is a critical component of success in B2B sales organizations. It helps salespeople develop the skills, knowledge, and capabilities needed to engage with customers, enhance their performance, and create a culture of continuous learning. By adopting best practices for effective sales coaching, such as using the SMART criteria to set goals and objectives, B2B sales organizations can realize a range of benefits, including improved sales performance, increased employee engagement, enhanced customer relationships, and continuous learning. Therefore, sales coaching should be a top priority for any B2B sales organization that wants to achieve long-term success and growth.

If you are unsure how to create an atmosphere of great coaching in your organization, please contact me. You can reach me by filling out the form on this site or by emailing Sean@NewSales.Expert.

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