Leadership Strategies to Create More powerful Sales Teams

There’s no question. The years of the pandemic were tough times to conduct business and drive sales.

When so many companies reduced their workforce and sales managers were told that their salespeople had to work from home, business leaders faced the challenge of managing and leading smaller, remote sales teams through some of the toughest times in modern history.

Tough times don’t last. But as a sales leader, you still had to drive revenue under harsh conditions so that the company survived. To accomplish this, sales leaders had to manage their sales talent to keep them sharp and on point. That way, when these crises ended and the economy began its upswing, they were ready to scale up quickly and their teams could hit the ground running.

When the COVID pandemic started, I interviewed 18 different C-suite sales executives who were taking stock of their companies’ resources and how they were leading, coaching, and managing their salespeople to address the challenges at the time. Here are some of the observations:

  1. Extraordinary circumstances, like the COVID pandemic, can drastically alter the business climate and create a very different business reality. This is common for Black Swan events.
  2. Messaging in the moment was absolutely critical to their clients and buyers. This has become even more important today. These sales leaders found themselves micro-coaching on messaging.
  3. Salespeople couldn’t be tone deaf to the prevailing circumstances. They had to display tactical empathy since their conversation was going to depend on the buyer’s role as well as the buyer’s situation. That's key. 
  4. Because so many of their salespeople were working remotely, sales leaders spent a greater amount of time preparing, training, and coaching their salespeople. 
  5. Key performance indicators and goals were always being adjusted. And fast-moving changes always impact a sales team’s performance and expectations.