Effective communication, or the lack thereof, plays a crucial role in sales team synergy. Our past surveys have shown us that too many businesses still struggle with getting this right. Here we highlight the two frictions that contribute to ineffective communication and how businesses are overcoming them.
Why do sales managers fail to communicate effectively?
Poor communication easily erodes trust between reps and managers. This erosion creates what is known as a trust-gap, in which effective communication will remain difficult, making your reps jobs more confusing and in the end affecting your overall sales. Assumptions and at worst, suspicion, inevitably fills this trust gap. Managers often face the frustration of having very little insight into what their reps are doing out in the field, having to rely on assumptions. This lack of transparency has two main negative consequences:
1. Reps are unfairly held responsible for failures to reach sales goals
2. Managers spend most of their time micromanaging instead of coaching their reps to succeed
Despite their best intentions to communicate more effectively, sales teams often get stuck in this trap and remain unable to bridge the trust gap and communicate effectively.
How can sales teams overcome this communication barrier?
After delving into some of this data we collected, it undoubtedly points towards Relationship Friction which is ultimately causing these communication barriers between reps and their managers. These are, in the greater scheme of things, small issues that can be solved and shouldn’t have to be problems you and your team deal with on a daily basis. These issues could actually be costing you more money, losing customers and valuable time you couldn’t get enough of to begin with. This is where we come in. Skynamo is changing the sales conversation by overcoming these points of friction and bridging the trust gap between managers and their reps.
With Skynamo, managers have instant insight into field sales activities, and because of this a continual coaching conversation is now a reality. It becomes easier to identify why some reps struggle, why some products aren’t selling and offer you a solution so that you can help them work on their weaknesses rather than simply showing them the door. Managers no longer ask, ‘why aren’t you overcoming these challenges?’ but rather suggest, ‘these are possible solutions to our challenges’.
Reps on the other hand have all of the product information and details at their fingertips. This means no more calling in to check stock numbers, errors in recording orders and gives them the ability to provide those small notes and details that will give you the edge over your competitors.
‘We have a philosophy: we always prefer to “coach up” rather than “coach out”. We prefer not losing our reps. All reps have different strengths and weaknesses and Skynamo allows managers to hone in on those qualities and coach them as individuals.’ – Mike Giltrow, CEO of BED Holdings.
“I can be much more proactive as a sales manager and lead the difficult discussions, which is to my reps’ benefit. We spend about 80% less time in conversation but our conversations are so much more fruitful.” – Jannic Zietsman, Regional Sales Manager of Lionel’s Veterinary Supplies.
The common thread that runs through the 6 factors that negatively affect rep-manager relationships, indicated above, is a lack in effective communication. Whether it’s a general lack of trust or the perception that sales reps aren’t properly supported or invested in to do their job, underlying these issues are communication failures. On the one hand the failure to relay helpful information to reps, and on the other, the failure to gather important information from reps.
If this sounds like something that you are currently struggling to overcome or would like to find out more we would love to help you. Contact us to get more information or Schedule a demo now and discover first-hand how Skynamo offers real-time overview of your sales activity so you can make smarter sales decisions and communicate with your sales teams more effectively.