How to Manage a Sales Team While You Work From Home
Now more than ever, it’s important to know how to manage a sales team remotely. Read on to learn more.
7 Tips on How to Manage A Sales Team Remotely
In this article:
- Promote Open Communication
- Invest in the Right Technology
- Prepare Mobile Solutions
- Reinforce Best Practices
- Provide Frequent Feedback
- Prioritize Organization
- Motivate Your Team
Promote Open Communication
Consistent and open communication is a must when you’re managing a sales team remotely. To do this, you need to know how to maximize your online and offline communication channels.
It’s more efficient to streamline communication channels. Still, it’s always best to consult your team before you make any hard and fast decisions. Ask them which applications, platforms, and offline communication modes work best for them.
At the same time, share your own preference with your team. Don’t forget to inform them about the best way to get in touch with you.
Working from home may have its advantages, but there’s a great risk for communication gaps. So in this context, it’s better to over-communicate.
Tip: Remind your team that you’re there to support them. Encourage them to ask and clarify if they have any questions
Invest in the Right Technology
Make it easier for you and your team by investing in the right technology. There are IT sales team management tools that can automate administrative tasks and keep everyone on the same page.
When you invest in technology like this, it can help improve your team’s operational efficiency. On top of that, it also helps improve visibility.
If you choose the right IT solution and artificial intelligence, you can get real-time data and metrics. This can help you give your team timely feedback and course-correct your sales strategies.
Prepare Mobile Solutions
Working from home is sometimes a misnomer because you may not always be at home. Sometimes, other pressing matters come up, and you need to be away from your computer at home.
When this happens, you don’t have to compromise your connection with your team. These days, you can load up most smartphones with most of your business essentials.
There are mobile IT solutions that can help keep you connected even when you’re on the go. That way, you don’t miss out on anything important.
Reinforce Best Practices
When your entire team is working from home, you need to make sure everyone’s on the same page when it comes to their sales strategies. Your organization may be tempted to do their own thing, especially if they’re used to closer supervision.
So when you’re managing your sales team remotely, it’s important to remind them and reinforce best sales practices. Remind them of your sales strategy, focus on quality leads, and update their pipeline regularly.
Provide Frequent Feedback
Even in a regular office setting, good managers give their team regular feedback. When you’re managing your team remotely, regular feedback is even more critical.
In any scenario, feedback is most effective when it’s metrics-driven and given on time. This is where your IT solutions really come in handy. When you have the proper analytics at your fingertips, you can equip your team with the information they need to become more efficient and productive salespeople.
On top of that, there are also IT solutions that will allow you to listen in on your team’s sales calls even if you’re in two different places. With the help of messaging apps, you can do real-time coaching to help them land the sale.
It’s also equally important to foster a sense of trust between you and your team. They’ll respond more positively to feedback if they know that your goal is to help them. That’s why it’s also essential to provide positive feedback.
Being appreciative of their strengths is just as important as identifying their weaknesses. It’s also best practice to have one-on-one feedbacking sessions on top of a general feedbacking meeting with the entire team.
During one-on-one sessions, you can give specific feedback to each of your team members. In these sessions, you can help them identify opportunities for growth and guide their next steps.
On the other hand, feedbacking sessions with the entire team is a chance to share any lessons you might have picked up from your top performers. It’s also an opportunity to troubleshoot pressing issues.
All of these feedbacking sessions can be done remotely if you choose the proper online platform. Various video conferencing applications can easily help with this.
Regardless of the work environment, a team manager has to juggle the needs of their team and the goals of their company. This can be trickier when you’re managing your team from afar, so it’s essential to be organized.
The manager needs to maintain a sense of consistency and make sure everything is in check and on track. If the rest of your team is working from home as well, you need to be flexible and set realistic expectations.
It’s always best to have a concrete plan but be ready to adjust operational strategies along the way. For example, if the situation calls for it, you may have to be more flexible with your team’s work schedule.
IT solutions can help keep your team focused on their daily goals and tasks, even if you’re not working at the same time. These tech-based solutions can also help you avoid micromanagement.
What is micromanagement? It’s a management style where there are close monitoring and high control over subordinates. Studies show that micromanagement leads to lower productivity and higher staff turnover. It’s always best to foster a culture of mutual trust between you and your team.
Motivate Your Team
It’s important to keep your team motivated, especially if they’re working remotely. It’s easy for employees to feel isolated and unmotivated, especially if they’re used to the hustle and bustle of an office.
It’s the manager’s job to ease this transition and help the team keep their eyes on the prize. But how do you go about motivating a remote sales team?
There are extrinsic and intrinsic ways to motivate your team. Promotions and bonuses are effective extrinsic motivators, but your management style can impact your team’s intrinsic motivation.
As you coach and manage your team remotely, try to do it with empathy. As a manager, it helps if you can see things from someone else’s perspective.
When you understand where your team is coming from, you can help sort out issues more effectively. Practicing empathy also helps foster a more harmonious work environment, especially in a diverse work setting. Remember, studies show that employees with low morale are less competitive and productive. So it’s important to consider their well-being and make sure they’re motivated.
You may encounter unique circumstances, like a global pandemic, that’ll force everyone to work from home for some time. When this happens, there are things you can do to keep your team productive and engaged. It may require some adjustments, but the right IT solutions can help ease the transition and maximize your resources.
What challenges do you encounter when you manage your sales team from home? Share them with us in the comments section below.