By Amy O’Connor
Who likes weekly sales meetings less – the poor salespeople being forced to attend them or the overworked sales managers who dread planning and running them? Hard to say. I suggest that both parties often find these weekly sales meetings excruciatingly uncomfortable – even painful.
You’ve probably heard the old saying “come to the meeting to get your beating!” Not good.
But, what if you could change that paradigm? What if you turned your weekly sales meetings into a weekly sales rally. Doesn’t that sound better? And it’s not just a play on words.
Here are 5 ways to rock your next sales rally.
#1: Be Clear on Your Desired Outcome
Why do you have sales rallies? Is it because…
- Upper management told you to have one?
- It’s a way to force your salespeople to come into the office at least twice a month to pick up their mail and get marketing materials?
- Your salespeople are screwing things up, dang it, and you need to get them straightened out?
No, seriously, why do you have sales rallies? What is your desired outcome? If your purpose has flaws, the resulting behaviors will also be flawed.
Try clarifying what you want to accomplish through your rallies. Ask: “What do I want my salespeople to gain through this rally? How do I want them to feel when it wraps up?” Then structure your agenda to produce that desired result.
#2: Set the Tone
Set the tone in the room right from the beginning. It might sound corny, but having upbeat music playing when people are arriving is a great way to set the right kind of energy for the rally. Having funny videos playing or even music videos on a big screen are also great ways to set a positive vibe.
#3: Take a Victory Lap
A true rally should celebrate success. Taking a few moments to go around the room and have everyone take a “victory lap” – to share something that went well either personally or professionally since the last sales rally – is a great way to highlight the team’s personal successes.
Everyone likes to shine. Give them the floor and let them take the spotlight with their latest “win”.
#4: Start With Training
When I work with sales leaders, they often tell me that they always plan to have a training segment at their sales rallies. Unfortunately, the “stuff” (going through reports, status updates, new process explanations, etc.) at the beginning of the meeting typically runs long and they run out of time for the training segment.
Okay. Stop. Let’s assess. Go back to #1.
What is your desired outcome for this sale rally? Is it best achieved by going through reports (an activity that could be achieved in another way) or by spending quality time training, coaching, role playing and interacting with your sales professionals?
If you chose B, then schedule your training at the front of the agenda. Lead with training so it always receives the time it deserves.
#5: Plan for Engagement
Listening to someone drone on for a whole hour is boring and uninspiring. Make sure your rally training segment is interactive. Effective training should include direction (instruction), discussion (assimilation), and practice (preparation). Keeping people engaged keeps their energy up and their minds stimulated.
Bottom line, good sales rallies are fun, high energy, relatively short, have a clear goal in mind, and provide valuable training tools for your sales team. Rallies like this will energize your team and motivate them to get back out there and win over their buyers.
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