Trying to boost sales team collaboration can be tricky. There are so many reasons why your team might not be collaborating: from conflicting personalities to different work ethics. It’s best to keep your eye on the big picture when promoting team work to your employees.
We’ve all been hearing it for as long as we can remember: “there’s no ‘I’ in team.” For salespeople, this might seem like a crazy statement. Of course personal sales accomplishments matter, of course individual performance is crucial. However, at the end of the day, the sales team is only as good as the sum of all sales, and if some people are falling behind, the entire team does.
Stimulating Sales Team Collaboration
The first part to increasing sales team collaboration is to encourage your team to do it in the first place.
Here are some tips on how you can get your team ready to work together.
Lead by example:
Your team will be more likely to collaborate with each other if you collaborate with them. This involves a more open-door management style where you are sharing with your team on a regular basis. You’ll need to go out of your way to be available to your sales team, as well as to work with them in general. Ask them questions about processes and methods and how you can work with them to improve them if necessary. Ultimately, emulate the type of collaboration you expect to see between your team.
Reward superior collaborators
If a certain employee demonstrated top-notch sales team collaboration, go out of your way to make sure the entire team knows it has not gone unnoticed. These employees are communicating and sharing knowledge for the greater good of the entire team, and if you want others to follow suit, you need to recognize them. Including short snippets at the end of team-wide emails thanking or recognizing specific collaborators will create an increase in teamwork on your team in a very natural way.
Share losses/wins in sales meetings:
This is a great way to get your team comfortable with sharing with one another. If one salesperson is expected to share a win and a loss at each sales meeting, everyone learns. The team can share insight on how to make the loss a win next time, and the salesperson will also teach the team based on their experience with their win. It’s a great way to get your salespeople comfortable sharing their secret sauce, as well as asking each other for help.
Make the Most of Sales Team Collaboration
Now that you’ve encourage collaboration and are starting to really see your sales team work together, you need to make sure they’re working together efficiently. Check out these tips on keeping collaboration productive:
Understand the purpose for collaboration
This is important especially if collaboration is happening across departments or across different teams. If people understand the purpose for the increase in sales team collaboration, they will be more willing to participate. They need to understand why they are being pushed to work together, what it means for them, and what it means for the company.
Celebrate individual and team success
Collaboration is important, but so are the individual accomplishments of your salespeople. Make sure you not only praise the team for overall success, but praise the individual milestones that brought the team to success in the first place. Collaboration is as great as it is because of all the different skills brought to the table. For collaboration to be as productive as possible, individual accomplishments and praise are required. (Looking for incentive ideas? You might consider Management by Objective, or MBO).
Have a collaboration process
Collaboration cannot be random and sporadic if you’re looking to enhance productivity and efficiency. This is especially important if you have a team of remote employees that need to work together. Even if your team is located in the same building, everyone should be using just one collaboration tool. This way, your team is following a uniform method for collaboration.
Ultimately, having a company that acts as a team is extremely helpful to every department. Businesses are comprised of many moving parts, and these parts need to be moving properly with one another.
Do you have an other tips on sales team collaboration? Let us know in the comments!