The mindset that works for top performing salespeople won’t work for leading and motivating sales teams. The key to their success as managers is how they shift and develop their coaching mindset to what works best for leading people.

Top-performing salespeople- do they make great sales managers? Well, it depends…

New sales managers can struggle and stumble if they don’t address a fundamental challenge in their new job: The mindset that worked for them as top performing sales people won’t work for leading and motivating sales teams. And the key to their success as managers is how they shift and develop their coaching mindset to what works best for leading people.

Global leadership development expert and CEO Loren Margolis joins the Integrity Solutions podcast to discuss the challenges, misconceptions and specific strategies for taking stellar individual sales contributors and helping them become great sales leaders and coaches.

Key Sales Coaching Mindset Podcast Takeaways:

– Top performing sales people are focused on driving their own success. Conversely, top performers who have made the successful transition to a manager’s mindset focus on learning, measuring, and motivating others to perform. 

– Newly promoted managers can’t just drive people to perform like they drove themselves to succeed as individual sales people.

– The shift to a manager’s mindset is about consciously letting go of what made you a success — letting go of imposing that on others — and understanding what team members are motivated by what they value, their preferences, and their ideas.

– Coaching people to succeed is critical — vs. managing their performance.  Ask your people what drives them. What motivates you? How can I best motivate and support you? 

– The myth that coaching takes too much time is a misperception of how coaching works in an organization. Coaching for managers is about using a coaching approach that boils down to: listening, asking open ended questions, and helping a team member explore how best to approach their own challenges. 

– New sales managers can self-assess to learn if they’ve made the mindset shift. Ask yourself: Are you micromanaging — stepping in to direct or imposing on people how to work — or are you letting team members take their own approach to getting results? Strong leaders lead from the balcony (big picture motivation and managing as a coach) vs. directing people’s dance steps on the dance floor.

– Also, you are talking more or are you listening more? If you’ve transitioned a sales manager’s coaching mindset, you’re doing more listening vs. talking. The manager’s mindset involves spending the majority of your time in one-on-ones and with teams listening — asking questions and eliciting team members’ insights and ideas.

– What’s at stake for not adopting a manager’s coaching mindset? Underperforming teams. Disengaged team. Organization attrition: people leave when they’re not listened to.

– New sales managers need to take specific steps to transition their mindset

Quotes from Loren Margolis:

“When you’re a top (sales) performer, you drive your own success. You directly influence your performance. You don’t have to deal with motivating others to succeed. So the most important mindset shift is to learn how to measure, how to direct and how to motivate others to perform.”

One of the greatest misunderstandings or errors organizations make when they promote people into (sales) management is assuming that your top performer can use those very same skills and same mindset to produce high-performing results in their team and that they don’t need the support or the time to transition their mindset- and also HOW to switch their approach.”

‘How can I help this person to perform at their best and achieve their goals?’ That’s very different than ‘how can I get this person to achieve MY goals and do it the way I would have done it?’”

“Ask yourself, ‘do I listen more than I talk? Or do I talk more than I listen?’ If you have transitioned your mindset into a management approach, you’re spending the majority of your time with your people in one-on-ones, in team meetings, listening.”

“What’s at stake for managers who don’t focus on adopting this new coaching mindset is an underperforming team who’s not working to their full potential because their ideas and their true motivators are squashed. You get a disengaged team- team members that don’t feel and think they’re being listened to by their manager and worse, people are going to get up and leave…”

“You are there to tap into what they do best- not impose your way of doing things.”

Related Links:

Follow Loren Margolis on Twitter

Training & Leadership Success Website

Infographic: How Top Companies Use Sales Coaching to Buoy Their Results

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