Keywords: Expand the Circle, Leadership Best Practices with Matt Poepsel

Expand the Circle – Leadership Best Practices with Matt Poepsel, #222

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When it comes to hitting sales quotas, scaling companies, and retaining top sales talent – all of these areas often fall back on one thing: leadership.

Without effective leadership, companies don’t grow. But the question often becomes, what makes an ‘good’ leader?

In the midst of the Great Resignation and, more recently, the Quiet Quitting trend, the role of leadership cannot be ignored. 

In this episode of the Modern Selling Podcast we explore the ins and outs of post-pandemic leadership, what it means for sales organizations, and what strategies leaders should be using to expand their circle.

This episode’s guest, Matt Poepsel is one of the leading experts in the field and brings a highly unique perspective that makes this one of my absolute favorite episodes.

Matt Poepsel, PhD is a tireless champion of human potential. A shameless self-improvement fanatic, he enjoys sharing his observations, advice, and humor through his writing and workshops. His professional life has been shaped by his business, military, and academic experiences.

Dr. Poepsel currently serves as the Vice President of Professional Serves for The Predictive Index where he serves 1,000+ Talent Optimization Consultants around the world, develops highly scalable programs and tools that produce business results, and designs strategic talent optimization solutions for clients.

Prior to The Predictive Index, Matt founded Covocative – a next-generation sales development platform and served as the Vice President of Professional Services at Gomez, Inc. – a Boston-based software startup that was later acquired by Compuware Corporation. 

If you’re a sales leader or leader of any kind, this is the episode to listen to so you can walk away with the right strategies that work now to inspire, ignite, and explode your team’s performance.

Effective #leadership is #key to hitting #sales quotas, scaling companies, and retaining top talent. 💡 @GoModernSelling w @mattpoepsel & @M_3J 🎙️ #modernselling Click To Tweet


What role does leadership play in sales?

With any organization, the leader is at the helm of how things operate and the leader is responsible for setting the tone of the workplace culture. I wanted to get Matt’s perspective on what he sees is the role that leaders play in business.

Matt shares, “Leaders have the opportunity and I would say a responsibility to make sure that the individuals on their team can see themselves in the company’s mission. It’s up to the leader to connect the dots for them and to create alignment between the needles they’re moving so that as a sales person they know what their contributions mean to the team and the overall mission.”

But, what are the things that leaders “should” be doing to help not just retain their top talent, but to keep everyone inspired and motivated to take action. Matt outlines three key things sales leaders can focus on:

Being – sales reps want to feel that they’re treated like a human being. That’s why leaders taking time out to connect with their individual sales people is so important. Because if you don’t know about their life and interests outside of work, it will be easy for them to feel disconnected from the team and just like “another worker”.

Belonging – If the Great Resignation taught us one thing, it’s that people no longer want to just be a number. They want to feel like they belong and their work matters to their leaders, to their team, and to the larger organization. As a leader, you can sow into this sense of belonging by recognizing your sales people, working with them to outline their goals, and by acknowledging their efforts when they go above and beyond.

Bigger – Even in sales, understanding the “mission” is an important part of helping people connect to their work. What is it that your company represents? What are the problems your company is helping other businesses or people solve? According to Matt, if you’re not showing your teams how they’re contributing to a larger mission (than just hitting quota), you could be missing out on an opportunity to inspire your teams to reach higher levels of performance.

Listen to this #podcast ep @GoModernSelling to learn what #SalesLeaders can do to start infusing the 3 “B’s” of #leadership 💡 w guest @mattpoepsel & host @M_3Jr Click To Tweet

Watch the video version for this podcast episode, here:

What leadership traits are missing in the workplace?

We often hear about trends like “Quiet Quitting” and other things that are redefining how people are showing up in their roles. I was curious to hear what Matt’s view of this was and what fundamental leadership traits we need to close the growing gap.

Matt explains, “The biggest missing pieces are trust and psychological safety. These things are not just nice to have, they’re a requirement to build work environments where people want to perform at their best. The reality is trust and psychological safety are what drive real business results. When these are present we see higher levels of innovation, higher levels of profitability, higher levels of creativity, and problem solving.”

I think this points to a large and very important point – when we build environments on trust and psychological safety, we, as leaders, give our teams the permission to take risks, make mistakes, and try new things.

Listen into the full conversation to hear what Matt believes sales leaders should be doing to consistently create highly innovative sales environments.

#Leadership plays a crucial role in the #success of any organization.💪 Listen to this ep of @GoModernSelling #Podcast🎙️ to learn from expert @mattpoepsel & host @M_3Jr Click To Tweet

What is Enlightened Leadership?

There are dozens of different leadership styles and doctrines – all with their own unique perspective of what they believe makes a “good leader”.

This leadership space is Matt’s area of expertise, so I wanted to hear how he differentiates the various leadership styles.

Matt outlines, “We’ve seen leadership in different theories progress over time, which is great. We’ve gone from the authoritarian type, with the ‘do what I say’ style to now what I call the ‘enlightened leader’ who is able to uniquely meet the needs of today’s modern worker. Enlightened leaders take a human centric and more business performance approach to leadership. ”

According to Matt, an Enlightened Leader knows and communicates their vision and is not only open to giving feedback but requires it for their own leadership development.

If you’ve been challenged with keeping your team motivated, then be sure to listen to this episode to hear the exact steps Matt says to become an Enlightened Leader.

This episode of the Modern Selling Podcast is brought to you by Korn Ferry. Korn Ferry

transforms sales teams using their world-class Miller Heiman, methodology, employee

assessments, benchmarking and talent advisor capabilities to increase win rates and quota attainment. Korn Ferry offers Korn Ferry Sell, a sales effectiveness app available in App Exchange and app source that helps your sales team develop and replicate powerful sales strategies that help sellers win more deals and crush their quotas. Learn more at

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