What Keeps Sales Managers from Coaching?
"Two key flaws in the coaching-as-a-silver-bullet thing: Some managers don’t have time. Some aren't good at it." Lauren Bailey via Selling Power.
In this excerpt from The Winner's Guide to Effective Sales Coaching, Brian Trautschold profiles the key obstacles to effective sales coaching.
The Obstacles to Effective Sales Coaching
In its 2016 report, the Sales Executive Council discovered that top-end coaching led to a 7 percent uplift in sales numbers. The bad news: achieving ‘top-end’ coaching required a massive time investment. Three hours of coaching. Per rep. Per month.
As worked out by Factor 8 President Lauren Bailey, that amounts to 36 coaching hours per month for a 12-person team – essentially 25 percent of the manager’s time. The odds that a typical sales organization implements and adheres to the time commitment: Highly unlikely. “I’ve never seen a team pull this off for longer than two months.” Bailey affirms. “Ever.”
Aside from time investment, there’s another looming challenge plaguing the industry: many sales managers are not trained to coach their reps effectively. In 2016, the Sales Executive Council found that coaching was the #1 worst sales management skill. Two of the top three challenges in the Bridge Group's latest Sales Development Metrics and Compensation Benchmark Reports (2014 and 2016) were 'Productivity/Performance' and 'Coaching/Development'.
Given these stats, it’s no wonder that an overwhelming 77% of firms don’t provide adequate coaching to their salespeople, per a recent study by the Sales Management Association.
And yet, the American Society for Training and Development has reported that U.S. companies still spend $20 billion a year on sales training, despite dubious returns on investment. Another report from ES Research Group found that 90% of all corporate sales training programs yielded only a 90-to-120-day increase in sales productivity before they returned to pre-training levels. Other studies showed uplift to last as little as a six-weeks.
Worst of all: Many sales managers report nearly double the coaching time their reps report. Or as Bailey rephrases it - even when managers think they are coaching, their reps may feel otherwise.
Can Technology Save Sales Coaching?
In his opening presentation for the 2017 AA-ISP Leadership Summit, Velocify Vice-President of Marketing Matt Reid affirmed the reports findings. "Data analytics, artificial intelligence, and virtualization will continue to grow in impact and importance - transforming sales organizations at an exponential rate." Reid stated.
Indeed, the sales coaching technology space is already exploding. Emerging vendors like LearnCore, ExecVision, Chorus.ai, Gong.io, and Ambition now grant sales teams instant access to learning management and training, recording and analytics for calls and meetings, real-time activity and efficiency metrics, and performance trends.
The Winner's Guide to Sales Coaching
Companies need elite sales coaches more than ever. The Winner's Guide to Effective Sales Coaching sets forth everything companies need to reach the next level.
Visit the Academy Page to download the Winner's Guide and learn: the ROI of effective sales coaching, actionable coaching obstacles for today's sales managers, core coaching strategies and principles for modern teams, and our sales coaching playbook here at Ambition.
The Sales Coaching Experts
The Winner's Guide to Effective Sales Coaching features world-class insights from six featured experts: Jason R. Jordan. Mike Weinberg. John Barrows. Trish Bertuzzi. Lauren Bailey. Mike Kunkle. Tamara Schenk. Get to know them better below.
Ambition: The Visual Sales Management Platform
Harvard Business Review and AA-ISP (the Global Inside Sales Organization). See why Salesforce clients like Wayfair, Outreach, Velocify and more use Ambition to assess and motivate their teams with real-time data analytics
Contact us to schedule a demo of Ambition for your sales force today.