Sales coaching is one of the most demanded coaching forms in today’s market. So, if you were wondering what kind of coach to become, then consider this one.
But what does a sales coach do, and how to become a Great Sales Coach? Well, we will figure that out throughout this article.
So, if you are ready, let’s start!
The following article covers:
First of all, let’s get clear on the definition. So what is sales coaching?
The winning team’s key component is a coach; in this case, the winning team is the sales team. So basically, sales coaching is the process of mentoring salespeople one-on-one to improve rep performance. It is an ongoing process of development and improvement. The vital component of sales coaching is that it allows sales reps to develop analytical skills and see alongside them come up with effective solutions to obstacles by themselves. The coach is there as a guide.
The purpose of sales coaching is to guide salespeople towards the achievement of the goals, assist in the transformation of several behaviors that are not effective to the ones that bring results, and develop the overall skills of the sales team.
Why is sales coaching important?
So, why would companies even hire sales coaches? Isn’t it costly? Well, it definitely is. Or why would individuals hire sales coaches to improve their skills? Because sales coaching training truly helps to advance necessary skills to become a great sales rep.
Now, let’s look at the number of specific reasons that explain the vitality of sales coaching.
Growth & Improvement are nothing like moving from place A to B; it is all about consistency and continuity. So, to get objective B, you have to grow to it, then continue towards achieving objective C, and so on.
Sales coaching is vital because it contributes to the ongoing growth of sales reps. Salespeople are motivated to learn and improve when a coach is truly a professional. And that by the end of the day, it positively affects the company’s profit margins.
Another reason sales coaching is essential is its practical results and improvements. When companies hire sales coaches, the main goal is to improve salespeople’s performance and overall sales, which leads to better profits.
Sales coaching can greatly help to advance the skills of salespeople and practically use their skills & knowledge.
Ongoing Feedback & Motivated Employees
If you want to have committed employees who won’t leave you if they get a better offer, then you have to work on their motivation levels. Motivated employees are satisfied employees; they are workers eager to learn and grow that benefit both the company and themselves contributing to self-fulfillment levels.
The sales coach guides workers toward becoming better sales reps, keeps giving continuous feedback, and implements various motivation techniques that keep them on track. According to statistics and research, when companies provide sufficient benefits, including developmental training, it improves satisfaction and commitment levels.
Let’s Wrap it Up
So, to summarize, Sales Coaching is Vital because:
- It contributes to employee motivation and satisfaction levels
- It helps sales reps to become better and close more deals
- It increases companies profit margins, meaning that hiring a sales coach is an investment, not a cost
Main benefits of sales coaching
What are the main benefits of sales coaching? Let’s review those both from companies and from the coach’s perspective.
Benefits of Sales Coaching | Companies Perspective
First of all, let’s take a look at the benefits of sales coaching from companies’ perspectives. And those are:
- Boosts revenue. A good coach will train sales reps to improve their performance, therefore the revenue and profit margins of the company.
- Improves sales team’s productivity. Some employees always wait for tasks. Meanwhile, others just know what to do. A good sales coach will also contribute to the improved productivity levels of employees who will work and be motivated to work, and not just sit and hope that they won’t get a new task.
- Close more deals. Also, when employees are trained, they can close more and nigger deals.
- Sales coaching is usually held one-on-one. However, it still develops interpersonal skills, meaning that team members will start communicating more efficiently with one another. Plus, some sessions can be team sessions.
- Boosts creativity. Coaches listen, observe, and motivate; they can find the ‘hidden” talents of your sales steps and stimulate their creativity.
- Leads to prosperity. Employees that perform well satisfy the company, and the company that provides them with development opportunities satisfies them; that leads to overall customer satisfaction at the end of the day due to better performance.
Benefits of Sales Coaching | Sales Coach Perspective
Now, it is time to look at the primary benefits of sales coaching from the sales coach’s perspective. The benefits are presented down below:
- On-demand. Sales coaching is a profession that is highly in demand nowadays. Companies realize the vitality and benefits that a sales coach can give and rush to hire good ones, considering it a long-term investment.
- Contributes to self-fulfillment levels. While working with different people and teams, you also grow as a person, which contributes to unlocking your full potential and reaching new levels of self-fulfillment.
- Good payment. Companies are ready to pay Good Money for professional coachees who will help to bring their profits to the next level and contribute to the growth & expansion of the business.
- Flexible working hours. The excellent part about being a sales coach is the flexible working schedule and hours. You definitely will say goodbye to 9 to 5 jobs.
Top 3 Sales Coaching Challenges
It is time to take off pink glasses and also realistically review the main challenges of Sales Coaching. The industry enjoys good demand, and you have many chances to find a job. However, you also may face certain challenges.
Challenge 1 - Time Consuming
Unlike group or team coaching, sales coaching requires one-on-one sessions. So you will spend lots of time with each of the coachees. Plus, sessions should be consistent with bringing results.
One way to overcome this challenge is to organize online coaching sessions that will greatly save time on transportation & cleaning up the space.
Challenge 2 - Back & Forth Conversations
Some people, especially salespeople, are quite talkative. So another challenge you may be facing is generic conversations about nothing. However, remember that you are there to get the job done, and part of coaching is to be able to listen and build trust.
So in a sense, you have to listen. But you can also ask guiding questions that will bring them to the topic. Another way to overcome this challenge is to dedicate a specific amount of time to each coachee, e.g., 1.5 hours, and let them know you have a 1.5-hour session. In this case, they will also be motivated to use time productively.
Challenge 3 - Reps may Not be Interested
If a company sends you reps for training “forcefully,” it will be quite hard to find common ground and host sessions that will bring efficient results.
If the sales rep chooses you as a coach independently from a company, you won’t face this challenge. If the company is sending them as “mandatory,” be more conversational and talk about how it will benefit them in the long term to motivate them and lower defenses.
Another way you can avoid this is to know company policies, e.g., whether or not training is required for everyone or only those who want to participate.
Sales coaching vs. sales training vs. sales mentoring
Now, let’s compare sales coaching vs. sales training vs. sales mentoring and understand the main differences. It is quite easy to confuse those; however, let’s take a look at each.
The idea of sales training is to provide the sales team with specific strategies and a set of skills that they can further use to improve sales. Sales training can be held in groups or one-on-one. It aims to improve sales managers as leaders, teach new techniques for closing deals, etc.
It requires significant money, time, and commitment investments and is more specific. However, unlike sales coaching, sales training is focused on theoretical knowledge.
Sales Mentoring differs from sales coaching and sales training, as Sales Mentoring focuses on the career advancement of the sales rep. It puts focus on the individual and their goals in a five or 10-year span. It helps them improve sales and grow as a sales rep, leading to career advancement in a few years.
And finally, Sales coaching is a lot like sales training; however, it is different in a few significant aspects. Sales Coaching still remains a variety of general coaching, meaning that it aims to guide the coachees so that they will find solutions to the obstacles on their own. It aims at personal alongside professional development and equips them with practical skills they can use throughout their lifetime.
Plus, while sales training remains theoretical, sales coaching is about practice. So the most efficient solution will be to hire a sales coach after employees have participated and finished the sales training. The sales Coach will guide them to implement everything learned in theory into practice and improve real-time results.
Can sales coaching be online?
Absolutely YES. Moreover, it will save a great deal of your time and resources. You can simply choose a platform on which you will host your business and training programs. Afterward, customize it in a way that your brand stands out among the rest. Then, simply start marketing yourself.
Benefits of Online Sales Coaching
Here are the main benefits that you will gain if you host sales coaching sessions & programs online.
- Time-effectiveness. You will save a great deal of your time because you won’t have to waste it on transportation. By the way, not only time but also nerves and energy.
- Cost-effectiveness. Online e-learning businesses require very low starting capital. The most costly thing to invest in is your education as an online coach. However, the keyword is INVEST because it will quickly bring you high revenue, and your investment will be justified. I would recommend choosing internationally accredited certifications.
- Satisfactory. Online sales coaching as offline will bring a sense of importance and value to your life, leading to improved satisfaction levels.
8 tips for building an effective sales coaching plan
The development of a sales coaching plan may not be the easiest task. However, if you are aware of certain tips & tricks, the process will become much easier. The tips presented in this section of the article are collected from industry experts who personally implement them to develop incredibly efficient sales coaching plans.
So, make sure to read and memorize those. Also, do not be afraid to experiment as a beginner. It is always normal to be a beginner in the industry. You just need patience and courage to develop skills and grow as a professional. Finally, let’s look at the practical tips on developing an effective sales coaching plan.
Tip 1 - Reps are Professionals
Treating your reps as beginners who know absolutely nothing will either demotivate or frustrate them. Keep in mind that sales reps are already trained individuals who deserve their place within the company. You are there to guide and advance their abilities.
Tip 2 - Focus on the Top 60%
Let’s be realistic every team has top performers and those who are not performing well maybe because of a lack of experience. They will also improve performance, but if you want to give results in terms of numbers, focus on the middle-level specialist. The top ones get the game, and they will keep improving; if you guide and increase numbers of sales for mid-level sales reps, the majority of the company will instantly notice the results that you as a coach give.
Tip 3 - Befriend the Data
You need data all the time to understand, analyze and evaluate the situation now to base your further plan on. Besides, data is vital so you can measure the effectiveness of your coaching sessions.
Tip 4 - Goals
When you coach the salespeople even one-on-one, you should have an overall idea about a final goal for each and for the team. E.g., the final goal can be to increase sales by 15% by the end of the month for each. And increase overall sales of the company products by the end of the month by 10%.
When as a coach, you have a clear goal, you will be able to design an efficient program that works.
Tip 5 - Listen
This goes without saying; listening is one of the most vital skills that coachees need to have. Listen to the coachee, and grab an overall idea about their personality to come up with an individual development plan.
Tip 6 - Guide do not tell
One of the main purposes of coaching is to guide coachees, meaning that you do not need to tell them the right answers. Ask guiding questions that will help them to come up with the answers they need.
Tip 7 - Self-evaluations
Many university professors implement this method on students, and it greatly impacts their motivation levels. Basically, you need to ask the sales team to self-evaluate themselves in a writing reflection form at the beginning and by the end of the training (e.g., in 3 months). In the first evaluation, they can write about where they are now, what their goals are, how they think they perform and where they want to be by the end of the training.
When they reflect on all of that, it will automatically help them to gather a sense of purpose and see the bigger picture. Being aware of the purpose motivates quite well.
By the end of the training program, the second self-evaluation will help them to see their own progress.
Tip 8 - Give Feedback
Do not forget to give coachees feedback so they have a basis for further improvement. Feedback can be underestimated, but it is, in a sense, a constructive criticism that helps employees to understand where they are and what needs to be done for further improvement.
So, ensure to provide sales reps with good and detailed feedback. However, do not forget to outline their progress as well to push them forward.
How to become a great sales coach?
If you want to become a great sales coach, you have to have certain qualities. We will present you top 5 Skills that will help you become a Great Sales Coach.
Skill 1 - Ask Effective Questions
Sales reps do not want to be told what to do, as they already are professionals. Plus, if you want to teach people and improve their skills, you have to let them devise solutions independently. How can you do so? Through asking effective, guiding questions.
Some of the questions you can ask include:
- Where do you see yourself in 6 months?
- What are your goals?
- What is the most challenging part of the sales process? What are the possible solutions to those obstacles?
Skill 2 - Pro-activity
Pro-activity will contribute to better coaching. What is being proactive? Basically, it is all about taking action and controlling the situation rather than doing nothing and complaining. Be a true leader, guide your coachees, and encourage pro-activity.
Skill 3 - Collaboration
As once again mentioned, reps are also industry experts at some level, so they also understand what areas need to be improved. That is why make sure to collaborate with your coachees and develop individual growth plans together. Collaborative skills are as important as listening to be able to give efficient results.
Take into consideration their self-evaluations and opinions on what aspects of their profession they want to improve. Also, look through their goals and “edit” them together, making SMARTer.
SMART goals are those that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time specific. So if they provide you with the “raw” goal, make sure to “bake” it till it tastes amazing.
Example: Sales rep tells you they want to increase sales. This is not a smart goal. It is an intention. A smart goal would be to make it measurable, specific, etc., so it will be something like this:
“I want to increase sales by 15% by the end of this month.”
Skill 4 - Building Trust
Good coaches Know how to build trust. It is vital to build a good relationship with your coachees. If the trainees do not trust you, they won’t respect or take your feedback seriously; therefore, you won’t be able to give efficient results. Ensure that you build a reliable and trustful relationship from the very beginning.
Skill 5 - Ability to focus on the Development of 1 Skill at a time
Good coaches can focus on one skill at a time. If you try to develop all the skills of your coachees at once, then none of the skills will be developed at a sufficient level. Identify areas that have to be improved and work on a specific skill.
When for example, communication skills are developed to a certain level, or a new deal closing technique is successfully learned, move on to the next skill.
5 best online sales coaching software
As far as we are clear on every other aspect, including definitions, plan development, and practical steps, now it is time that we get to know the software you can use to host your online coaching business. We decided to help you save your time on research and are ready to present the Top 5 Best Online Sales Coaching software.
The first platform that definitely is worth being on this list is Uteach. Uteach is an all-in-one potent automation that will take your online coaching business to the next level. It promises to start your online teaching business in a few minutes and, so far, successfully delivers its promise. If we take a look at the various ratings of Uteach on third-party websites, they are incredibly high, which also indicates the reliability of this platform.
However, let’s take a look at the Main Features of Uteach that make it such an incredible platform for online sales coaches. So, the features are:
- Website Builder that allows you to easily build a full-featured website in a visual drag & drop editor. You do not need coding skills to build an awesome website with Uteach.
- Course Builder feature provides you with every necessary functionality to build and publish your online course. Plus, you get SEO-optimization features right inside the course builder,r to drive more organic traffic to your course.
- End-to-end live sessions in one of the features that make Uteach stand out from the rest of the market
- Integrations that will enhance your overall experience
- Tools for quiz building and automation for checking to save your time; however, you also will get a manual checking feature as well.
- Certification builder tool to provide your students or coachees with a certificate after they finish your course to motivate them to keep learning.
- Automated messaging, notifications, attendance checking, homework assessments, and calendar to ensure that your time is not wasted on the routine tasks
- Fast Loading Speed will only positively contribute to the overall conversion rates.
- White labeling features to do the most incredible branding for your business.
Also, unlike some other platforms with Uteach, you get an opportunity to sell both digital and physical products.
Indeed, many of you have heard about Thinkific as it remains one of the leading platforms in the online teaching industry. Thinkific also offers lots of useful features that you can use to design your online coaching website.
I suggest we look at the primary features you will gain if you choose Thinkific. Those are:
- Website Builder. Thinkific offers a feature-rich website builder tool that will allow you to build a good website to manage and market your teaching/coaching business.
- Built-in marketing & eCommerce features will make selling and promoting the products easier.
Even though Thinkific offers lots of features to promote and expand your online teaching business, it still remains a platform mainly for online course creators. As a coach, you can be satisfied with it at the beginning.
One more platform you can confidently consider is hosting your online coaching business in Kajabi. Kajabi offers similar features to Thinkific and Uteach. However, it is more expensive than Uteach, which may stop many people. But, it does not stop Kajabi from offering a good set of features & sufficient functionality to host and expand a successful coaching business.
So, let’s take a look at the features Kajabi offers. Those are:
- Website Builder & Course Builder will allow you to build a website and publish pre-recorded courses easily.
- Custom Domains and white labeling
- Blog Creation tool & SEO-optimization tools
If you are a coach with experience or a network of online coaches, then you definitely have heard of Bitrix24. It is basically a free online workspace for businesses. This platform is not for online teaching as much as online business management.
However, as a coach, you may consider this platform to manage your teams more efficiently. Not everyone wants a separate website, so they would rather host live sessions with Zoom but still have a platform to manage business processes.
- Instant messaging & Calendar sharing tools
- Built-in CRM reports
- Bulk email features to save your time on routine
- Daily planner to ensure that you stay on-point and do not miss out on anything
The last platform we wanted to mention throughout this article is TalentLMS. This is a perfect platform for online coaches, educators, and course creators. With TalentLMS, you can sell online courses, webinars, coaching sessions, and many other digital products.
So, I suggest that we take a look at the main features.
- Content Creation & Management tools, including drag & drop feature, file storage, etc.
- Course Creation tool that comes in with features such as drip content, course builder, catalog, etc.
- User Management tools such as unlimited admins, custom user types
Will you start your sales coaching journey now?
It is your time to start your sales coaching journey. Stop hesitation because you simply waste more time that could be invested smartly to Make Money.
Choose one of the best platforms for coaching - Uteach. And follow these steps:
- Create a website in less than 2 minutes, choosing one of the most flexible and affordable pricing plans
- Start building your brand and making all the necessary customizations to the website builder tools in the visual drag & drop editor.
- Use Course Building tools to create and publish your amazing pre-recorded sessions that can potentially drive more clients also SEO-optimize descriptions to rank higher in SERPs.
- Open a blog and start posting relevant content connected to your industry to drive more traffic and clients.
- Use multiple integrations and host end-to-end live sessions.
Uteach makes your life easier and ensures that you get and are able to provide high-quality & reliability.
Uteach is with you all the way towards success.