Effective one-on-one sales meetings are necessary for the growth of a company. They strengthen peer-to-peer relationships and improve the overall well-being of an organization. An effective one-on-one meeting explores what your sales reps need help with, explores how you can guide them to achieve success and more importantly it allows you to really understand where training needs to improve and where you are lacking as a leader.
When building a relationship one-on-one, asking the right questions is key. Harris observed that the best questions are open-ended. Some of Harris’ favorites include “How confident do you feel in your pipeline and your ability to get numbers?” and “What kind of things do you want to work on to get to that number?” When asking these questions, it’s important to keep in mind that everyone has ideas. A question that Harris always asks is “What are your goals professionally and personally?”. Having a conversation with members of the organization where other people’s goals are considered, especially personal, can contribute to growth.
Something that managers admit to struggling with , including Harris, is delegation. Just because you know someone’s goals doesn’t necessarily mean you can blindly help them accomplish them. Harris’ colleague Scott Leese gave him a method for delegation. Lease said that when “you delegate something, expect it to come back flawed” You should never assume that any task will come back perfectly the first time around.
Despite numbers being a necessary part of meetings, keeping it interesting ultimately contributes to developing a productive relationship. One of Harris’ colleagues recommends varying meetings. One week you may talk about numbers and metrics, the next about career or personal goals. Building an organic relationship with peers can help improve all areas of work. See how you can help your employees reach their goals. Harris observes that people try to cram all of this in 30 minute sessions, but you don’t have to. You can spread it out. Keep their goals and accomplishments in mind.
Showing vulnerability as a leader is never a bad thing. Harris talks about how his relationship with individuals on his team have grown simply through being genuine “it creates a lot of empathy and a lot of trust. That person recognizes they’re not perfect, but they’re still striving.”
Managers often forget that and more often than not they are in the same boat as their sales team. There’s nothing wrong with letting them know you’re stuck too. It’s perfectly acceptable to be stuck. There is a certain stigma that used to be attached to it, however the relationships that companies are building now are a lot more personal.
Dealing with a representative that’s not performing well can be a challenging scenario. Harris does explain that any representative that is underperforming is definitely aware of it. This is where the open-ended questions come in handy. Ask them what they think is going on and what’s different.
The goal is to always have a genuine conversation. “Get out of the desk and away from the power position” says Harris. He continues to say that he makes it a point to remind them that they are not in any sort of trouble, they just need to have a discussion. Harris finds a great strategy is to walk and talk. He advises knowing your data as a leader and being prepared for all objections but to use your best judgment. Whatever is wrong can always be improved on.
Overall creating an effective one-on-one is highly important to the success of your reps. It’s important to remember that each of your reps is different from the next and to fully understand and build deep relationships is crucial. The success of your team doesn’t solely depend on them, it depends on the manager that spends the time to help guide them in the right direction.