From missed quotas to high customer churn, to even lower conversion rates – sales teams have their work cut out for them in this hypercompetitive post-pandemic landscape. This is why, now more than ever, the role of the sales leader cannot be ignored.
But, the question often becomes, as a sales leader, what should and can they do to not just motivate their sales teams, but actually drive substantial and consistent growth for their organizations.
That is the topic of this episode of the Modern Selling Podcast – which is a must-listen for any sales leader currently struggling to hit quota or keep their sales teams focused on results.
In this episode, we welcome Andrew Thompson. He is the VP of Sales, Americas for Agora.io – a leading API platform for real-time engagement for video, audio, and chat communications. Agora’s Real-time Engagement Platform as a Service (RTE PaaS) allows everyone to interact with anyone, in any application, anytime and anywhere. Their platform provides developers with simple, flexible, and powerful APIs to embed real-time video, audio, and chat experiences into their applications. Andrew leads a large group of managers and sales reps worldwide in driving customer growth and international expansion to help grow profitable revenue streams, while also delighting Agora’s customers.#Sales teams have their work cut out for them in this hypercompetitive #postpandemic landscape.😰 Find out what #Salesleaders can do to increase #revenue growth on this ep of @GoModernSelling w Andrew Thompson @AgoraIO and host @M3_Jr Click To Tweet
What Can Sales Leaders Do To Stimulate Revenue Growth?
When it comes to new sales leaders, I wanted to know from Andrew’s perspective what he sees are the most critical things to do to drive sales.
Here at Vengreso, all of our sales leaders play an integral role in understanding our buyer personas, and partnering with marketing – really immersing themselves in as many aspects of the business so they’re clear on the entire buyer journey.
According to Andrew, studying the buyer is THE most important thing that B2B sales leaders should be doing, but often overlooked, “I think with new sales leaders there tends to be misalignment because they put forth sales strategies without thinking through the buyer personas. I would go to my top five customers and just talk to them. Understand how they’re using the product, and why they selected your company – just get clear on what value it was and what they see in your company. Then use that intel to improve how you sell to other similar-sized companies.”
This is such a critical component – understanding your buyer personas – is why personalization throughout the entire sales cycle is so key. When sales leaders and sales reps know who they’re talking to, their specific pain points, and how your company solves them (specific to each buyer persona), that’s when you can really win in prospecting and sales.
Tune into the full conversation to hear what strategies and tools Andrew recommends to use to segment your customers to do a thorough buyer persona analysis.#Salesleader, do you REALLY know how you should be working with your #Salesteam?🤔 Learn to increase your #sales growth NOW w @GoModernSelling @M3_Jr & guest VP of Sales @AgoraIO Andrew Thompson🔥 Click To Tweet
How Should Sales Leaders Be Working With Their Teams?
This can be a loaded question, depending on who you ask. In my 20+ years of sales, I’ve found that the most effective sales leaders are those that listen first and always seek to understand.
That’s why at Vengreso, we have a very open communication structure. Whether you want to talk to the CEO, COO, sales manager, or a sales rep – everyone is 100% accessible. In this way, we create a transparent culture where communication, ideas, and honest feedback are welcomed.
As the VP of Sales for Agora, I was interested in hearing Andrew’s insights as someone who is tasked with not only driving sales, but also getting global teams to work together.
Andrew shares three key points for sales leaders and sales managers to remember:
- See what’s not working. As a sales leader, especially if you’re a CRO – you’re often far removed from the day-to-day sales grind. That can make it easy to be out of touch with what’s working and what’s not. Andrew makes it a point to reach out to his sales teams to get a pulse on how things are going and where sales gaps need to be closed.
- Get to know each other. This is a big one here at Vengreso. The most effective sales teams are those who are able to feed off of each other’s strengths. But, that requires getting to know each other and finding out where people thrive and where they could use more support.
- Be willing to fail. In sales, everything is driven by quotas, and hitting your numbers that this often takes away from the risk-taking mindset. Andrew encourages his sales teams to try new things, explore new strategies, and be willing to learn from their mistakes to elevate their entire sales process.
Join the conversation and learn what Andrew says is the most important thing to do to boost your sales culture so your sales teams can consistently hit quota – effortlessly.Learn from Andrew Thompson VP of #sales @AgoraIO and host @M3_Jr how #salesteam dynamics have changed since the #pandemic and much more 💡 on this @GoModernSelling #podcast episode! Click To Tweet
How Has Sales Team Dynamics Changed Since The Pandemic?
We’ve all heard it in the news… “The Great Resignation”. For many B2B sales companies, this is a real challenge as sales reps are being poached (or choosing to leave) for the lure of making more money.
Even at Vengreso, an employee was recently offered $48,000 MORE for the same role, if he left our company. But, he chose to stay! (I mean we do have an awesome sales culture here!)
The point is, with so many options in the market for sales reps, I wanted to know what Andrew thought were important “must-dos” to get salespeople to stay.
He was spot on with my own observations, “Sales have become more competitive in this virtual selling environment which is why training is so key. Without the right training and support, sales reps may feel that pull to go somewhere else, especially if they can make more for the same role.”
This is so true. This is why when we onboard a new SDR, we take them through an extensive six-month training process and show them the ins and outs of how to prospect. We leverage tools like Gong to evaluate our sales calls to see how we can improve as a team and as individual sellers, plus we use these recorded calls as a coachable opportunity to give specific feedback to help the SDRs become more effective sellers.
If sales training is a critical area that you’re struggling to provide for your sales team, then you’ll want to tune into the conversation and pay particular attention to the discussion that Andrew and I have at the 22-minute mark.