Every day, in hundreds of sales offices around the globe, salespeople anticipate – and managers prepare for – “The Sales Meeting.”
For some teams, the sales meeting is something to be endured and suffered through before they can finally get to work. Others, however, have terrific meetings that are positive, energetic, upbeat and truly motivational.
Managers who consistently stage great meetings understand and incorporate the following five keys to a successful sales meeting:
1) Start on Time: The timeliness of your sales meetings will set the
tone for their importance. Be prompt; start and finish in a timely fashion and your salespeople will duplicate this behavior with your customers.
2) Be Prepared: It’s fairly obvious to your audience when you’re simply winging it. Of course, not all sales meetings need to have a theme, an interactive exercise or prepared subject matter. We need to respond to current situations and timely ideas. However, you should perform at least one well rehearsed meeting a week that focuses on a training or a motivational topic. This will produce optimal results.
3) End on a High Note: Make certain that at the close of your meeting your sales people are in a positive and heightened emotional state. Just as we need to peak our customers’ emotions before asking them to buy, we need to ignite our sales people prior to them meeting their prospects. Remember emotions are contagious.
4) Praise and Compliment in Public and Constructively Criticize in Private: Have your top performers, or those who made sales, share with the group what they feel they did right. If you noticed a salesperson making a horrible blunder, you may share the example, but never the wrongdoer. Work in private with those that are struggling. Even then, when coaching a salesperson always give positive feedback first. They will be much more open to helpful criticism.
5) Allow the Participants to Perform a Task Without Interruption or Feedback: When assigning a participant an exercise, role play, or any other assignment, let them complete the exercise entirely before offering feedback or advice. This is easier said than done; most sales managers, trainers and leaders are expressive by nature. But when we interrupt our salespeople we never know if they would have eventually corrected their mistakes. Remember, it is much more powerful when they realize their errors than when we point them out.