Have you ever given a live TED talk to your Sales Consultant or BD Agent while they’re on the phone – telling them how to respond to the lead? Things like “you want to give the customer a reason to call us back” or “tell them we’ll give them more on their trade” and even something to the effect of “tell them the deal is only good today!” Sounds harmless, right? You’re actively trying to give them advice to get that appointment. But in most cases, this not only hurts their chances of booking the appointment – especially considering the customer can most likely hear you in the background – it also can disenfranchise the Sales Consultant or BD agent.
One of the other drawbacks of this approach is that “TED talk” is often not consistent with what they were previously told or trained on. When you detract from what they’ve learned and offer them conflicting advice, as harmless as it might seem, it can wind up, causing more harm than good. So, while this isn’t to say you “shouldn’t” work with your teams, there has to be consistency in terms of what you’re telling them. And more importantly, there needs to be core building blocks they can easily refer to as they’re handling objections. A strong and well thought out foundation which will be built upon is the key.
If your Sales Consultant and BD Agent can go back to their core building blocks – from active coaching – they can use these scenarios – as many of them become second nature – to respond to the customer’s inquiry effectively and confidently. So when you do connect with them to review their current results, it becomes a different conversation. Not to mention, you will start to see an overall increase in their performance.
Heck, just getting your Sales Consultants and BD Agents to refine their greeting – when answering inbound phone calls – can positively impact the end results. And by layering in one technique at a time increases their chance of retaining these skills. Not to mention, by using active coaching, you are – well – actively reinforcing these techniques. The more confidence your teams have when answering leads, the stronger their results will be.
One of the other added benefits of Active Coaching is that instead of talking with the Sales Consultant or BD Agent in a “TED talk,” it’s now feedback based on what they’re learning. More importantly, the feedback is consistent with what they’ve been trained on. Whereas giving them a real-time TED Talk, which can – as mentioned above – not only distract them but disenfranchise them from buying into the process. Besides, have you ever been on the phone and had someone talking into your ear while you’re trying to speak? It’s not fun.
Now, when it comes to reviewing their active coaching sessions or freshly answered leads, keep in mind results do not happen overnight. So, while it might be the go-to action to sit them in your office, play the call, and give immediate “come-backs” as to how you’d have answered the lead – instead, take a minute to get with their trainer. There’s nothing wrong with discussing the Sales Consultants or BD Agents results with the trainer. When you do it this way, not only will the trainer get feedback on their trainee, but more importantly, you’re allowing the trainer to work directly with the Sales Consultant & BD Agent. So, when it comes time to have their next session, they focus on the current concerns and obstacles they’re facing. But, another idea for those GM’s really wishing to raise the bar, why not enroll yourself in the same training? Staying relevant doesn’t mean you’re going to be taking shifts in the BDC or adding yourself to the lead rotation schedule, but it does allow you to more effectively communicate with your customers and your team. Plus, who doesn’t want to know what’s happening in the store they’re running and the industry they’re serving?
And this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t sit down with them to review their status either. But when you do, it can instead be about how far they’ve come by following the processes learned through Active Coaching. Offering that because of their following and buying into the process, they have increased their performance. Giving positive reinforcement to your teams only increases the chance of their continuing to give it their best and continue on. But make no mistake, if this is used to beat them up or you expect results overnight, it simply will not work. There is no such thing as “flash training.” It takes time.
Are you ready to change your TED talk?