Creating a Successful Sales force
Examine the reasons why coaching is important to a successful sales force. Also include how coaching is different than training.
Creating a Successful Sales force
Coaching plays an important role in creating an effective and successful sales force. According to Forrest (2013), a successful sales force contributes greatly towards the organizational growth and development by promoting sales and improving an organization’s profit efficiency. Coaching guides the sales team to meet its purpose, understanding customer needs, adopting a strategy, and utilizing resources effectively to achieve the set goals. The function places emphasis on equipping the salespersons with the critical skills, knowledge, confidence, and develops the individual persons for enhanced sales performance. Thorpe and Clifford (2014) state that coaching considers how to accomplish sales goals/targets. The coach improves the ability of the team to apply the gained skills, increases its approaches to different sales situations, and ensures that each employee can identify consumer needs and exploit them to increase sales (Whistman, 2016; Thorpe & Clifford, 2014).
The function of coaching is important in enhancing the effectiveness of the sales force through inspiring, training, mentoring, advising, guiding, and educating while targeting the improvement of the individual. Coaching ensures that the sales teams can apply the skills acquired to improve sales. Forrest (2013) posits that the coach works differently from the manager who dominates, commands, and controls by inspiring confidence, improving skills and the capacity to apply such skills, and guiding every member of the sales team to develop the capability to function effectively. The integration of the different functions with a focus on bettering the individual makes coaching important to the sales force (Whistman, 2016). Without effective and sufficient coaching, the achievement of the sales targets would be difficult or impossible.
Coaching creates a sales force that adopts and implements strategy and focuses on sustainability and the continuously improving conversion rates. The sales team must have a strategy that aligns with the business mission and vision. Coaching enables the team to adopt and implement the sales strategy effectively. The process also considers the attitudes, needs, beliefs, and the fears of the team members and expert guidance to ensure the achievement of the strategy. The major purpose, according to Forrest (2013), lies in ensuring sustainability and improving performance to ensure the conversion rate, which translates to higher sales and profit efficiency. As a continuous process, coaching focuses on improving the proficiency and capability of the team, ascertaining excellent performance and the achievement of the set goals. These elements of coaching make it critical for developing a successful sales force (Fatima & Azam, 2016; Whistman, 2016).
While coaching is
critical, training is equally important in developing a successful sales force.
There is a significant difference between training and coaching. According to Thorpe and Clifford (2014), training involves
learning a new skill(s) or gaining knowledge. People are given the tools for
the performance of a certain job enabling the movement of each person from
conscious incompetence to conscious competence. Training equips the sales team
with the ability to do the job but not necessarily to the required excellence, competence,
or standard. Coaching differs from training by focusing mainly on equipping the
sales team with the ability to perform the tasks excellently thus achieving the
set standards. It focuses on ensuring that performance moves to the next level
rather than just enabling the people to do the job. Thorpe and Clifford (2014) states that coaching allows the
employees to reflect on their performance in specific areas with the guidance
of an informed and objective helper.
Fatima, Z., & Azam, M. K. (2016). Consequences of Supervisory Behaviour: A Literature Review. International Journal of Business Insights & Transformation, 9 (2), 33-40.
Forrest, J. (2013). Leadership Sales Coaching: Transforming from Manager to Coach. Cork: BookBaby.
Thorpe, S., & Clifford, J. (2014). The Coaching Handbook: An Action Kit for Trainers and Managers. Farmington Hills: Kogan Page.