Your sales team is already hard at work striving to hit those Q1 goals. Whether they’re on the road or in-house, the effectiveness of your employee communication will either help or hinder their performance this year.
Of course, there isn’t one set communication strategy that will successfully open your team up to new possibilities, ventures, and goals this year. It’s a compilation of tips and understanding what your team needs most from you that will truly help them reach their potential.
To empower you to do just that, we reached out to company leaders who are experts in employee communication. Here are their top tips:
1. Invest in communication technology
It can be very challenging to keep every team member-focused and well-informed in the busy sales environment that we are in. In this case, communication is what could be left out but shouldn’t be.
Many companies are already taking advantage of internal communication software to ensure secure and streamlined communication throughout the company. Such applications provide you with various enterprise tools such as text, voice, video chat, and screen sharing. As a result, your sales team remains focused and your information is secure.
2. Break down walls between you and your sales team
First and foremost, you must make sure employees feel comfortable sharing their feelings and opinions about specific tasks inside the workplace. Start the cycle of safety and honesty by being forthcoming about the company’s progress. This places employees in a circle of transparent information sharing.
Then, ask every employee how they honestly feel about the company and its leaders. If they aren’t comfortable in the current environment, hopefully, they’ll disclose that information. The discussion you have afterward breaks down barriers between employers and employees.
3. Set communication expectations
As a sales leader of on-the-go reps, you set the tone for weekly (or daily) email correspondence. Remember to keep emails positive, be approachable to workers, and watch out for too much information. Consider using humor such as business cartoons or images to keep employee communication personal. Also, share a bit of your life with your team such as what you did over the weekend.
Along with email, a good leader knows how to pick up the phone. A phone conversation provides a human connection that cannot come from email alone. This conversation should center on work, but also take time to ask about what is going on in your employee’s life outside of work.
Chris Gardner, CEO and Executive Recruiter at Artemis Consultants
4. Be supportive of those in remote or flexible roles
Managing remote or flexible working sales employees is all about communication — but in the right amount.
Your team is inundated on a daily basis with emails. It can take hours to respond to and file these messages. As a sales leader, consider the art of compiling information and deciding whether the information needs sent now or if it can wait. A scheduled weekly email, such as a Friday wrap-up, can house much of the information that is not immediately necessary.
It’s also critical to give your flexible workers freedom when it’s well-deserved. Communicate with your team like the professionals they are — if their work is meeting expectations. This means you should check-in, but not keep track of their every move. If it takes an hour or two for an employee to reply to an email, this should be acceptable. It’s easy for a remote working employee to feel vulnerable, and you can foster a sense of security by proving you trust your team.
5. Discuss and agree on moving forward
Embracing your customers’ lifetime value (LTV) and customer acquisition costs (CAC) over gross revenue and dollars in the pipeline is a huge mental shift for any team. I meet with our sales team routinely to explore the topic of growth. However, we agree on a common-sense way of moving forward before they’re sent out to hit goals.
For example, as we move past our initial rapid growth phase (we hit 11,949% over the past three years), we need to focus on the basics:
- How much is each sale worth over their lifetime?
- How much did it cost to make that sale?
Growth is all well and good, but if your numbers are unsustainable for your sales team, then what is it all for?