Your performance review meeting has been on your calendar for a while now. It’s coming up soon and will be here before you know it. This causes a variety of emotions for sales professionals. In general, when we think about performance reviews, we automatically gravitate towards results and metrics.
These numbers are surely important and, as a sales professional, you should absolutely know your numbers. I’m going to share some further ideas your sales leader will appreciate. Let’s call it a proactive performance review framework.
Create Your Agenda Ahead of Time
Your sales leader will likely have an agenda for your performance review meeting. You should too! Think about what you want to learn from the meeting. Do you have specific questions written down? Do you have personal goals you’d like to share? Here’s a quick outline to have in mind when creating your agenda.
- Questions to ask
- Examples to share
- Your goals
- Accomplishments to support what you’re asking for
Your agenda should be concise and on paper. I always recommend allowing your sales leader to share their agenda first. You can easily reference yours when your manager is sharing their agenda and you’ll be able to find overlaps or things that are the same on both. Be sure to acknowledge the alignment here as it exists. If you do have items on your list that weren’t on theirs, you can politely ask if they would have time to cover these items.
Specific Language Example:
This has been so wonderful, you and I are really in alignment. I had five different agenda items for this conversation, we’ve already covered three of them, so I’m really glad we’re on the same page. I do have a couple of other items on my list, do we have time to review those also?
Doing this alone will show your manager you invested time in preparation for the meeting and you’re willing to be an active participant going forward. You leave the meeting feeling empowered and like you’ve been heard.
Be an Architect of Your Career Path
Oftentimes new home sales professionals feel like things just happened to them. They are assigned a community or product line, given a quota or revenue goal, and a sales process to follow. These items are likely unavoidable and a place where many of us start. However, it doesn’t mean we should assume that’s all there is until we are instructed otherwise.
Think about your career path here. What do you want to accomplish? Your goals should surely align with the organization’s goals but they don’t have to limit your growth. Be confident in expressing, sharing, and asking for feedback on your goals with your manager.
Focus on Outcomes
When making any kind of ask, we must be prepared to share the outcomes. What’s in it for them? In our daily sales lives, we’re talking about our customers but when we are asking our managers for something, we are thinking in terms of what’s in it for the organization and even them personally. What is a direct result of doing something? How will the organization benefit from this? Think of this as a value proposition.
Your Reaction to Constructive Criticism
Chances are, you’re going to hear some feedback on how you can improve or maybe where you fall a little short. The key here is knowing it’s going to happen. You may not be privy to the specifics but preparing yourself to how you’ll react when you do hear it will make the whole experience better for you and your manager.
We all have, and demonstrate emotions when receiving feedback like this. When we don’t prepare ahead of time, there’s a really good chance we’ll be sharing emotions we’d rather not be in the heat of the moment. When we do prepare, because we know what’s coming, we are able to control the response much better and know exactly how we’re going to react.
Remember, throughout this process, it’s okay to ask for help. You might be telling yourself it’s not okay because you want to appear strong and in control. Asking for help and demonstrating vulnerability here almost always has the opposite effect. It shows your manager you are self-aware and thinking about how you can improve.
In our world of changing people’s lives, there’s always room for improvement. Progress over perfection as we like to say!