This week we take a look at the management issues that affect sales organizations the most – motivation, productivity, and responsive leadership. With insights from well-known leaders like Mark Hunter (@TheSalesHunter) and Mark Donnolo (@MarkDonnolo), you can be inspired to lead with more authority, drive productivity, and cultivate a happier sales team.
Leadership is Not an Activity. Leadership is a Lifestyle. (The Sales Hunter)
This 5-minute read is a quick reminder that sales leadership is about leading, not being in charge. Thought leader Mark Hunter explains that leadership means stripping yourself of ego and being available as a support to your teammates. As Hunter says, “True leaders know the measure of their leadership is not in what they do. It’s what those around them do.”
A New Way to Brainstorm For Sales Innovation (Sales Globe)
Mark Donnolo offers insight into how sales managers can better help their teams be more creative. Through following just a handful of brainstorming guidelines, your team can feel safer sharing ideas even if they are unconventional. One of the key ideas in this article is gamification. Donnolo shows how you can use it to turn brainstorming into an active and fun experience while delivering some true innovation.
3 Reasons CRM Software Optimizes Your Lead Management (Business2Community)
Social media strategist Marie Alonso (@DigitalPRLady) shares the bare bones of how a customer relationship management (CRM) program can support your sales team. She suggests that a CRM’s detailed analytics can help you to better understand your demographic, which gives you more accurate data for forecasting. She also suggests that a CRM program can simplify your marketing, making your cost per lead drop significantly.
Why You Can’t Motivate Someone Else – Video Blog (Julie Anne Jones)
In just a little over three minutes, direct sales leader Julie Anne Jones (@julieannjones) talks about how motivation and inspiration are very different objectives when you’re in the sales arena. She suggests that sales professionals need to consider the value of the proposition for the client, and then find a way to inspire them with the benefits of your product. This is a great refresher to remind sales pros to engage in customer-centric messaging.
What Pixar Can Teach Social Businesses About Storytelling (intelligentHQ)
Storytelling is one of the biggest marketing buzzwords of the 21st Century, and Pixar is the king of turning stories into sales. In this article from management consultant Paula Newton (@newtonpl), she explains how The 22 Golden Rules of Storytelling from Pixar can help your organization be more customer-focused, story-driven, and simplistic in your marketing messages.
The Best Productivity Apps for iPhone and Android (Business Insider)
Tech writer Steven Tweedie (@SteveTweedie) highlights some of the most effective and time-saving apps with this 5-minute slide show. He suggests great ones for sales professionals, including Humin, which helps you recall tiny details about people you’ve just met, and Timeful, which learns how you organize and complete work so that it can suggest more efficient ways for you to finish tasks.
Between 1973 and 2013, business productivity in the U.S. grew by 74%, while workers’ wages only grew by 9%. What is the cause for this huge discrepancy? Harvard Business School professor Jan Rivkin explains that globalization has decreased business investment in local communities, preferring worldwide labor that is much cheaper than at home. This is a fascinating article about how the weakness of the middle class might mean trouble for sales professionals everywhere. Written by Gillian B. White (@gillianbwhite).
Selling in the Connected Age (Inside Sales Lead Management)
Writer Joe Rizzo explains how the advancement of technology has made for much more education customers who are in need of support, not hard selling. He shares some amazing statistics about the productivity level of sales professionals, and suggests that aggressive social selling and web sales funnels are the way to land the big deals in the 21st Century.
Is Your Management Style Crushing Creativity? (Squires Group)
The writers at the Squire Group have created a very quick read that is also full of important information for any sales manager. This article explores six major drawbacks to cultivating creative employees, including motivating creativity with cash, punishing creative failures, micro-management, over-emphasis on efficiency, limiting internet freedom, and forcing participation in meetings over individual action.
What do you think?
Whether you are a sales manager or a person who interacts with one, the tools and ideals in these articles can help you create a more rewarding, effective, and positive work environment. Do you think that these pieces of advice would be well received where you work? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below!