December is a great time to reflect on the relationships you’ve built with your sales reps over the last twelve months. How sure are you that your sales reps love working for you? That they are confident in your level of support in them and your sales management abilities? That they feel empowered to learn and develop their professional skills? We talk about reps having “happy ears” by being too optimistic about an opportunity, but maybe you have “happy ears” about how your reps feel about you as a mentor.
Truth is, the manager-rep relationship is often tragically misaligned. While most sales managers think they review and coach their reps helpfully, far fewer of their reps agree. Sales managers tend to relegate coaching to the bottom of their to-do lists because of tight budgets and jam-packed calendars – but this is a huge mistake.
So why do rep scorecards help solve this problem?
They encourage engagement
Without a training structure in place, you run the risk of unsatisfied sales reps that feel detached from the company. Commit to mentoring your reps and checking on their progress daily, and you will build a culture of engagement that makes your reps excited to work for you. Reps WANT to be coached, and dedicating more time to their professional development will increase rep productivity and retention. It’s all about positive reinforcement and showing your reps exactly where they are progressing and not progressing.
They measure sales performance at the micro level
Recording sales activities help answer sweeping questions, like: “How many meetings did Jane booked last month?” Scorecards, on the other hand, help answer smaller questions about sales call procedures, like: “Did Jane ask an open-ended question after delivering value statements in her introduction?” and “How effectively did Jane identify the prospect’s pain points?” Scorecards emphasize smaller, more nit-picky errors reps might be making that won’t necessarily get picked up on without this level of scrutiny. This goes back to positive reinforcement – just because your reps are having trouble booking meetings doesn’t mean they’re not progressing in other ways, like in the way they open their sales calls.
They provide frequent feedback
Scorecards are an avenue for consistent feedback, which is tied to the theme of ongoing coaching and mastery. Better yet, scores are available to reps at all times so they can measure success or failure on their own. If you have done a good job hiring, they will take ownership of their progress.
For more on how to create, implement, and measure your reps’ scorecards, check out our webinar on Best Practices of Inside Sales Scorecards with Trish Bertuzzi, President and Chief Strategist at The Bridge Group.