Strengthen Your Sales Results With Sensitivity (Part 1)

Strengthen Your Sales Results With Sensitivity (Part 1)

“Coach your sales people to navigate the competitive sales world as you become more sensitive to their strengths.” ~ Danita Bye


How can sensitivity strengthen my sales results?

When my team suggested that sensitivity be part of the respect acronym, I quickly dismissed the idea. I am by nature a high driver that’s typically very task oriented; let’s-make-it-happen; let’s-get-it-done now.  No excuses. And so, it was with surprise that a short time after we had the discussion as a team, I talked with one of my clients, Brian, and the sensitivity word comes up again.  We’re discussing my soon-to-be-released book, Millennials Matter, and Brian tells me about the Millennials on his team.

To read the series from the beginning go here

He says that, for the most part, it’s working well, but there are challenges.  Then he says the following, “Danita, I don’t know if it’s all the participant trophies that Millennials won or something else, but you have to pay particular attention to how up-and-coming leaders feel.  The straightforward communication process that we used doesn’t seem to work as well. We need to spend more time on being sensitive to how our Millennial leaders feel in order to get engagement and performance.”

Are you also facing challenges as you’re coaching and mentoring your emerging sales person to close the right type of business and become the great sales leader you want him or her to be?  Well, maybe it’s time to bring sensitivity into the mix, even though you might be a hard driver, bottom-line person like me.

What are the places that we should be sensitive to in order to help coach our up-and-coming sales leader to be more effective in their role?

Sensitivity to his or her strengths and capabilities (or lack thereof) can help you coach your up-and-coming sales leader to value their uniqueness.  Then you can help your Millennial to harness the strengths and skills they possess and work on the areas where they need development to grow revenues, increase margins, and expand your market share.

SENSITIVITY is the third action step to help you develop Respecting Others as part of your Relationship Wiring. 

Our RESPECT acronym (react, encourage, sensitivity, politeness, extraordinary kindness, considerate, timeliness) is a useful guide to model respect and collaboration to your Millennial sales leader.

Objective Management Group (OMG) uses a Sales Candidate Assessment that helps you determine whether your new sales candidate possesses the qualities to grow your business and find new accounts.  For example, to find out if your next gen leader is sensitive to his or her strengths and capabilities when it comes to Will to Sell, you can ask them strategic questions.  Here are the first 3 questions.  In the next post, I’ll share 3 more questions you can ask:

1.  Desire – How intense is your Desire to be successful?  

Desire is the most important element for determining whether or not your emerging sales leader has potential for growth. Goal setting is the most effective way of increasing desire.  When someone admits to having a lack of desire it’s almost like they’re saying, “Yeah, I don’t care that much about being more successful.”  The SGS Smart Sales Coaching tool can help your sales leader find goals that excite them and keep them motivated for months at a time.

2.  Commitment – What is your level of commitment?  

The SGS Smart Sales Coaching assessment helps you to use data to better target your coaching efforts and effectiveness.  Most salespeople believe that their commitment is quite strong.  But for many this commitment is conditional – as long as it’s not too difficult or scary or too much discomfort involved.  Full, unconditional commitment means doing whatever it takes to succeed, as long as it’s legal and ethical and no one gets hurt.

3.  Responsibility – Are you a blame-gamer or do you take personal responsibility? 

When your up-and-coming sales leader makes excuses, he or she is selling himself or herself short vs. taking responsibility to come up with a solution, which in turn, adds to his or her growth and development.  Here’s an example:  I’m mentoring a Millennial salesperson who is still in his first 90 day period in the company. He feels frustrated with his role, but even in voicing his frustrations, he never blames the company or his superior.  He is telling me what he is doing to solve his frustrations.

The old ways of communicating and inspiring our emerging sales leaders are losing their effectiveness and it’s increasingly challenging as we are onboarding Millennials to drive sales. Encourage your up-and-coming leader to be sensitive to his or her strengths so that sales capabilities are consistently increased to meet and exceed your strategic growth objectives.

In the next post, I’ll give you 3 more tips on how sensitivity can boost your sales growth.

Leadership lesson: Help your emerging sales leader to become sensitive to his or her sales capabilities, so that you can harness their strengths to boost your sales growth efforts.
Leadership question:  How might you use sensitivity to help your Millennial sales leader reach his or her full potential?

© Copyright Danita Bye, 2017

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