Sales growth is essential for every company. It drives revenues and profits, and it enables employing more staff, increasing compensation, expanding the company’s products or services, increasing market share, spurring innovation, acquiring new assets, and fending-off competition. There are no secret tools or secret formulas and no smooth and easy path to success. Sales growth does require leadership skills and the right strategies and tactics.
What Will Boost Sales?
Sales growth is not a one-time event. It requires a regular process and strategic considerations along with tactical implementation involving such areas as:
- Advertising and marketing that promote the company’s products or services through a variety of media and approaches.
- As a key part of a company’s value equation, price is a direct determinant of sales. That includes penetration pricing, discounts, and special promotional offers.
- Studying the competition to benchmark best practices and finding ways to differentiate the company.
- Product quality. Products or services that have unique and consistent offerings create demand and are critical to increasing market share.
- Customer service. It isn’t enough to have a good product and a good price. Achieving exceptional customer service is also essential to retaining customers and leveraging their feedback and referrals to increase future sales.
- Sales Team. The sales team itself must be of high quality and motivated to increase sales.
- Sales leadership skills. Sales leadership is the force that directs and empowers a successful selling organization.
These Leadership Skills Will Boost Your Sales
Leadership skills beyond those required to be great at selling are a driving force behind a successful sales organization. These important leadership skills include:
- Hiring the right talent. Good leaders recognize good performers who will be persuasive, build customer relations and fit well with the sales team.
- Earn the trust of the team. Trust is essential to have team members buy into a leader’s consistency, competence, and integrity so that they will do what you intend them to do. Showing care is key to earning trust.
- Coaching and feedback. A good sales leader will help his/her people grow professionally through one-on-one as well as group coaching. And getting useful feedback is important to make sure that the coaching is well-directed and well-received.
- Motivate and inspire. The sales function can be difficult because it involves a lot of effort and rejection. Good leadership skills involve keeping employees happy and engaged, encouraged, and supported.
- Good communication is the glue that keeps performance and cooperation from falling apart. It includes good listening skills.
- A command instinct. Great sales leaders need to have genuine but not autocratic authority to help drive their team to achieve their goals. That command instinct includes knowing how to make specific and timely decisions.
- Having knowledge of buyer’s psychology is important.
- Product knowledge. A leader can’t expect his/her sales team to perform without having a good knowledge of the product or service first. Then, he/she trains all team members to have that thorough knowledge as well.
- Data-driven decisions. A skilled sales leader will make decisions based on data, not on gut feelings.
- Strategic leadership. Strong sales leaders make progress based on plans and strategy, not on impulse.
Leadership skills generally don’t come without self-awareness, effort, practice, and consistent application.
To Achieve Sales Success, Seek Outside Expertise
As a fractional VP of Sales, James Bellew works with small to medium-sized business owners to build or rebuild their sales organizations. That includes sales strategy, processes, building, establishing, and aligning sales teams and their sales tools to achieve solid sales improvement.