Get Off Your Butt and Start Coaching Your Reps

Start Coaching Your Reps

Sales Managers: Get Off Your Butt and Start Coaching Your Reps

In today’s highly competitive sales industry, which has endless analytic tools and virtual interfaces, the role of the sales manager has quietly pivoted to that of a ‘dashboard coach.’ While steeped in the allure of technology and real-time data, this shift risks overlooking the obvious and transformative power of observational coaching—a dynamic process that no dashboard, no matter how advanced, can replicate. It’s time for sales managers to unchain themselves from their desks and enter the visceral world where sales are won and lost: the field.

The Glaring Gaps in Dashboard Coaching

Dashboard coaching can provide a comforting illusion of control and insight, presenting managers with a neatly packaged narrative of sales success or failure. While useful, these data points and metrics inadvertently promote a culture of reaction rather than being proactive. They offer a quantified view of results, charting the ‘what’ without delving into the critical ‘why’ or ‘how.’ Such an approach may direct attention to lagging indicators like sales volumes. Yet, it fails to recognize or nurture the proactive elements—selling skills and the subtle cues that build rapport or understanding of the client’s concerns—that can only be gleaned through direct observation.

The Undeniable Edge of Observational Coaching

In contrast, observational coaching champions a broader view of the sales process. It empowers managers to witness the human elements that define successful selling: the energy of a well-delivered presentation, the ebb and flow of a client conversation, and the nuanced tactics that convert skepticism into agreement. These soft skills, cultivated and honed through live practice and immediate feedback, fill the gap between average and high performance.

The power of observation also extends to recognizing the environmental and interpersonal dynamics at play, often invisible from behind a screen. Observational coaching allows for a tailored approach, where advice and strategies can be molded to fit the unique challenges encountered by each sales rep.

 Building Trust Through Presence

Trust cannot be quantified, yet it is the cornerstone of every client relationship and the essential ingredient in the manager-rep dynamic. Presence is a form of currency in the economy of trust. By stepping into the sales rep’s environment, a manager invests in understanding and improving the essence of their team’s daily experiences. This not only forges a deeper connection but also signals a commitment that is felt rather than seen—a level of dedication that no digital dashboard can convey.

Providing Real-Time Feedback for Instant Improvement

Dashboard coaching is, by nature, delayed—a conversation about a report or a meeting about last quarter’s figures. Conversely, observational coaching thrives on immediacy. It seizes the moment, offering guidance that can be applied in real-time, transforming potential into action instantaneously. In the fast-paced sales arena, the ability to quickly pivot and adapt is invaluable; observational coaching is the key to developing this agility.

 Leading by Example

Finally, the most compelling argument for leaving the office is the opportunity for sales managers to model the excellence they expect. Demonstrating effective sales behaviours in the field reinforces lessons in a way that no report can emulate. It brings strategy to life and shows sales reps the power of proactive, personal engagement with clients.

Start Coaching Your Reps

The call to action is clear: for sales managers to truly develop their teams’ potential, they need to discard the comfort of dashboard coaching and embrace the raw and enlightening power of coaching in the field. This article isn’t just an argument; it’s a rallying cry for sales managers to lead from the front to shape a sales culture that is vibrant, adaptive, and profoundly human. Get off your butt—your team, your clients, and your bottom line will thank you for it.

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Steven Rosen - Book a Call

Seeking BOLD SALES LEADERS looking to build a winning team and develop a performance culture that achieves outstanding results.

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Steven Rosen 2022

Hi, I’m Steven Rosen, and I’ve been coaching sales executives for over 20 years!


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Steven Rosen - Executive Sales Coach


Steven A. Rosen

Steven helps companies transform sales managers into great sales leaders. His focused coaching helps clients achieve greater personal and professional success. Steven is the author of 52 Sales Management Tips - The Sales Manager’s Success Guide.

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