How to Run Your Sales Meetings like a Quaterback

bilichick trophy

As a Head Coach, Bill Belichick’s greatness comes from the fact that he builds his systems around the strengths and weaknesses of his roster and it led him to 4 Super Bowl Championships. This is good coaching in the purest form; playing to the strengths of one’s personnel.

It may not be something that often crosses your mind, but football coaches and small business owners have a lot in common. Both professions require leadership, dedication, commitment and a strong work ethic in order to succeed.

There is an old saying about the strength of the wolf is the pack, and I think there is a lot of truth to that. On a football team, it’s not the strength of the individual players, but it is the strength of the unit and how they all function together.” — Bill Belichick

Just like football coaches, as a small business owner or a Sales Manager; you must take on many roles to ensure everybody is working together as a team to achieve important goals and for operations to run smoothly. Here are a few other ways football coaches and small business owners play a similar game.

brady
Pre-game

To prepare for a football game, coaches research opponents, develop game plans and determine the best lineup of players who will help the team win. Similarly, when starting a small business, entrepreneurs conduct market research to understand the competition and the key economic conditions and indicators. Entrepreneurs also build a business plan, which sets the strategic framework for the organization and maps out the path forward. In addition, small business owners find top talent who will help them execute the plan and beat the competition.

During the game

Over the course of a game, head coaches make adjustments regularly, shifting tactics to put their team in position to score and win. They consult with assistant coaches to get advice on what plays they should run. Entrepreneurs and Sales Managers also make strategic moves and adjust to constantly changing market forces and customer demands.

Halftime

Coaches typically deliver inspiring halftime speeches that motivate players to give their all and function as a team. Entrepreneurs and Managers should also motivate their employees by providing benefit programs and encouraging their career growth through coaching and motivational curriculum, that helps to strengthen their teams’ skills. Having a motivational speaker at your monthly or quarterly sales meetings also adds a charge to your team, similar to the Half Time inspirational speeches of great coaches.

wolf of wall street

Post-game

Following a game, coaches review footage to analyze which plays and strategies did or did not work and what improvements the team can make to defeat the next opponent. At the end of each day or period of performance, entrepreneurs crunch numbers to determine how well the business performed and identify ways to boost profits, cut costs and improve customer service.

At your Monday Morning sales meetings, Sales Managers should be doing the same thing. They should be analyzing which plays resulted in closed sales and which plays didn’t. They should develop strategies and best practices from reviewing the week’s plays. Only then can they become the Tom Brady of management. They will know the strengths and weaknesses of not only their team members but of the competition. They will know if the competition has a tendency to lead with price or service. They could then quarterback their team to run plays that would leave the competition behind or looking in the wrong direction.

Confidence directly impacts results, here is how to get it.

russel wilson

You are down by 16 points with 3 mins to go in the 4 quarter. You have played the worst game of your life. You have thrown 4 interceptions. Not only that, but the world is looking on and judging you. What do you do? Do you fold up like a flower without sunshine? Or do you dig deep and remember the last time you were down 16 to nothing and you came away with the victory? Quarterback Russell Wilson did just that on Sunday to win the AFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers. With 3 mins to go in the 4 quarter, Wilson was having his worst game to date; he had thrown 4 interceptions. The commentators were saying they had never seen Wilson play this bad. I started to route for them. I was routing for the underdogs, the Packers, because the Seahawks were the Super Bowl champions; but I hate to see a team embarrassed in front of millions. I have heard of quarterbacks who were tagged as not being able to win the big games. But this is where confidence separates the true champions. Confidence and the spirit of never giving up. Even though Wilson had already thrown 4 interceptions to Kearse, he had confidence in him to give him another chance and he caught that winning touchdown and held on to that ball like his life depended on it. If you allow the facts like you just threw 4 interceptions, and you let negative thoughts snap your positive energy; you will loose. But like Wilson tearfully declared after pulling off a stunning overtime victory, he had the confidence in himself and in his team that they could win.

confidence

I saw this same scenario play out on a sales team that I was a part of. We were a team of about 40 outbound reps in a call center. The top sales persons on the team were selling about 40 units per day. Then a new girl was hired. She started banging out 40 units by noon!. Management thought she was cheating and started to check her sales to make sure she was not sandbagging leads. She calmly declared that she was not cheating; but that she was confident. She said when she picked up the phone, she had confidence that she was going to close the sale, and she usually did. I started paying attention to what she was doing, and I too started selling 40 units by lunchtime!.

confidence steps

Confidence is usually the result of prior successes. As a sales manager, confidence should be the first skill you coach to. If your team is not confident, that they cannot win. You have to exhume past victories to give energy to present day activities. Why did Wilson feel that he could win?; because he won before. He knew that if there was time on the clock, his team had a chance.

Who are the Stars on Your Team? The 20/70/10 rule of Differentiation

miami big three
Who is your favorite star player? Is it LeBron James in basketball? Peyton Manning in Football, or Derek Jeter in baseball? Regardless of which star you pick, management knows that this star is the “duck who lays the golden eggs” and they treat him with respect and shower him with dollars. On the same team, suiting up in the same uniform, playing the same number of games, going to the same amount of meetings and practice workouts; you can have the star making 10 million per year and his team member making the minimum $300,000 per year. What exactly is the message management is trying to convey with this disparity in salary? The message is “you are the best, you are important to this team winning, we value you and your skills, we don’t want another team to be able to steal you away by offering you more money.” The other members of the team don’t grumble at the water cooler about the unfairness of pay. Instead they are happy to play in the presence of greatness and they are hoping that some of his skills will rub off on them.

Let’s bring this scenario to your sales team. How are you letting the stars on your team know that you value their contributions? Do you reward them with praise publicly and personally? Do their bonuses reflect their value? I have been on teams where the top sales representative overachieves by 150% to revenue goal and the Sales Manager offers no public or personal congratulations. No fanfare! On top of that accounting tries to not pay by recalculating and cutting the amounts of bonuses.

The 20/70/10 rule of differentiation states that 20% of your team are your star players and should be showered with incentives to continue to perform at this high level. The next 70 percent are average or mediocre team members and management should offer them coaching to improve their confidence and skills sets.

rolondo Mcclain

Take the case study of Rolando McClain. He was the #1 draft pick for the Oakland Raiders in 2010. That means that he was one of the best coming out of college; but once in the NFL, he didn’t live up to his potential and he was released first by Oakland Raiders. He was then picked up by the Baltimore Ravens and later released as well. Then when the Cowboys were looking for a linebacker, McClain came under their radar and they decided to check him out. They called his old college coach Nick Sabin and asked him what made McClain good in college. With this information the Cowboys received from Coach Sabin, they called McClain in for a tryout and made him an offer. The story goes that the exchange with the Ravens cost the Cowboys a bag of donuts! Jason Garrett the head coach of the Cowboys and his coaching staff worked with McClain, improved his confidence, and moved him from the bottom 10%, to the top 20%. McClain now starts every game and he and the Cowboys had an awesome year.

The job of a Sales Manager is to move his mediocre players up through the ranks with effective coaching. Sometimes an outside coach works best, because the employee can be honest. Beating them over the head with the numbers on the report is not the way to do it.

Please call me for a free consultation if you are interested in improving the players on your team.

The last number is the bottom 10%. These team members should be moved out to other roles. If on a sales team and selling is not their forte, they could be moved to a supporting role, for example.

What Are They Biting On? 5 Ways To Improve Your Bait

young_boy_going_fishing

I recently watched the movie “A River runs through it”. I should confess that anything with Brad Pitt I watch with a big smile on my face! Anyway, in the movie Brad and his brother were fishing in this river. Brad’s brother was catching a whole lot of fish and Brad had not caught one. After some time of being a spectator in this fishing expedition, he shouted to his brother, “What are they biting on?” His brother shouted back, “Pimento Bugs”. Strangest bait I ever saw, these bugs had wings! But sure enough, when Brad changed his bait he caught the biggest fish ever!

In sales, you are the Bait!

Everything you heard is true! People buy from people they like, people they feel a connection to or with people who are like them!


Here are 5 Ways you can Improve your Bait:

teeshirt dress

No tee-shirts and tattoos

1: Your Attire
Again, I will start with an Old Cliché “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” If you are going for an interview or meeting with a customer for the first time; look the part, and that is your best.
I went for an interview once at Apple retail Store and I was very confused. Apple, Google and Facebook CEO’s have all made famous the tea shirt and running shoes mode of dress. So I was not sure how to dress; but I decided on a suit. No tee-shirt and runners for me! Better to be overdressed than not get a job because you showed up in tea shirt and tennis shoes. In the movie “the Pursuit of Happyness”, Will Smith was sleeping in bathrooms and homeless; but he made sure he had one suit that always looked good. That is all you need, one good outfit. It is suggested that for the man the color should be blue, black or grey for a suit. For the ladies a pant suit or an A-line dress works wonders.

2: Your Profile
Your profile picture is what everyone sees. Just a picture of your head and face, and they from that they form a judgement, whether consciously or not. In a recent LinkedIn training class, the presenter told a story about how he was about to hire someone for a service, then he noticed that their picture was dark and blurred. He said he decided not do business with them. He formed a judgement that if they could not spend $50 to get a good profile picture, then they could not be successful. You might say that he was too judgemental; but you never know what is costing you business. It is best to button it up.
I personally would never connect with anyone who didn’t have a profile picture because I made the judgement that they were either not active or not serious. Now I connect because I can offer my consulting services because they need Help! Spend the money to get a professional profile picture and it will pay dividends.

suit and shoes

3: The entire package
I could never understand the “shoe shine” concept. Why did men favor going to get their shoes professionally shined until it became a mirror and they could see their faces in their shoes?
Now I understand, those men understood the value of “the entire package”. You can’t show up in an expensive suit, and your shoes are not shined! You can’t show up in an expensive suit and your hair looks like a hippie; you can’t show up in an expensive suit and your car looks like you bought it from the scrapyard. People form the wrong impression and then you have to work doubly hard for them to hear what is “coming out of your mouth”.

For men, pay attention to the suit, shirt, tie, hair style, shoes.

For women, pay attention to your dress, your hair, your shoes and your pocket book! Yes, people now pay attention to what handbag you are putting your lipstick into!

4: Your Business card, your Website, and your Printed Materials

If you want to convey success, then you have to look the part.

Has anyone ever handed you a business card that was printed at home on cheap paper? What was your reaction? Did you want to run out and purchase their product? I am sure you didn’t. Or you ask someone who has a service you are interested in for a business card, and they tell you they don’t have one.
I should even add a pen to this scenario. In the movie “the Pursuit of Happyness”, there is a scene in which a salesperson bent over backwards to get a contract with Will Smith to produce his story. He called him several times, he made him an irresistible offer, he tracked him down at the airport and when Will was about to sign the contract and he asked him for a pen, he did not have one! Will cancelled the deal. He felt that a salesperson should always have a business card and a pen if he is worth anything!

5: Your Speech
I don’t know if you have noticed, but most of the leading roles for movies and television commercials are going to actors who sound English! It is like a “cool breeze” to listen to someone with a pleasant voice. You don’t have to have an English accent; but your volume should be right and your pace should be right. As a Toastmaster, when we are speaking, we are gonged when we add fillers to our speech. Fillers are so, umm, ahh, etc. if you are doing a presentation and you have too many fillers, your audience doesn’t regard you as a subject matter expert.

Your Bait is you! Once you make a good impression and the fish are biting; then you can get on with the business that you came to do, and that is to sell your product or service.

You want to catch some fish!

Find out some other ways to Create Influence
Register for my Free Pre-recorded Webinar

register now
http://www.myhelps.us/contact-us-1.html