Communication is key to building a confident, engaged, and productive sales team.
Effective sales team communication is not just about pushing product updates and pricing information. It is also essential to keeping your team motivated, engaged, and aligned with the organization’s goals and values.
Good communication is one of the marks of a great sales manager. It is also one of the hardest skills to define and hone. So, in the midst of your salespeople’s hectic schedules and full inboxes, what makes for really effective team communication?
Here are some ways to get your message across and encourage an important dialogue with your team!
Think goals first.
Much of the value of communication gets lost in translation. We are so trained to prioritize haste, that the quality of communication often suffers. Before having an important conversation, or even sending out an email, memo, or announcement to your team, think clearly about what you want to say.
Define what you want the outcome of a conversation to be. Going into a conversation with a half formed thought will make it difficult for others to decipher your message. It will also impair your ability to listen to others if you are preoccupied with clarifying your own point.
Ask what would you like your recipients to take away from your message? Then try and strip away superfluous information. Be direct, and be brief. Less is more in the world of fast paced office exchanges and information flow.
Good communicators are good listeners. If your job is to manage a team, the majority of communication will be from you to your salespeople. Nevertheless, it is vital to maintain channels of communication in both directions.
Healthy and effective communication within your team is just as important as a manager’s ability to communicate well. Set the stage for your team through your own approach to communication, establish norms that foster a culture of open, respectful, and productive exchanges for your whole team.
Establish regular and open to dialogue with each member of your team. Periodic check-ins are a fantastic tool for creating space for team members to share. One-on-one’s give every member of your sales team a chance to weigh in, and group debriefs are very helpful forums for fostering group communication.
People aren’t robots and they don’t tend to react like them. considering emotion in your communication is essential to build confidence and trust with your team.
Empathy in communication requires putting yourself in the place of the other person and adjusting your message to how they will feel and respond. Sometimes good communication is as much about saying something it in a way that people can respond positively to as it is about saying it clearly. Always be constructive. If you have to give criticism, recognize something good at the same time and encourage concrete actions for improvement.
Honesty and empathy will gain you respect so that when you have something to say, people will listen.
Know your audience and get creative.
Get to know your sales team. Showing interest in their personal and professional experiences and aspirations will help establish a relationship in which communication can thrive. Additionally, the more personal the message, the more likely people will pay attention and respond to it.
Also, don’t be shy when it comes to getting visual and creative. Salespeople typically have high workloads and it’s not easy to catch their attention. Use humor, add fun visuals to an email, chat, leaderboard, etc. when announcing important milestones, sharing goals, organizing events, and launching new benefits.
Use tools and tech to your advantage.
In addition to clear, honest and empathetic interpersonal communication, there are big benefits to maintaining continual communication of sales team metrics and strategies. A recent Harvard Business Review survey revealed that 70% of employees are more engaged when senior leadership continually updates and communicates company strategies. Constant communication, however, takes time an enormous amount of time if you plan on doing it all yourself. Luckily, there are tools out there that can help streamline this communication.
Broadcasting platforms, like this one, can be used to display team KPIs, updates, and goal trackers. This kind of communication not only helps to bring transparency to the sales process, but it also increases engagement and encourages salespeople to align their personal goals with the organization’s goals.
Learn more about how Hurrah! Leaderboards can serve as a dynamic, visual channel that improves team communication by recognizing team progress, tracking goals, displaying announcements, and more!