My Sales Team is Not Performing

Why are your sales teams not calling your leads?

Why are your sales teams not picking up the phone and calling your leads?

As a business owner, you’re probably wondering “What’s wrong with these people, did I hire the wrong guys?”

Perhaps I should start with a common misconception… 

Marketing team versus sales team

There is a big difference.

Do you know the difference between what your marketing team should be doing, versus what your sales team should be doing?

The misconception is that marketers are sales guys, who should be closing deals.

That could not be further from the truth.

A marketing team is there to “market”, meaning they advertise. Their main job is to create awareness around a business brand, and then to bring in potential customers (leads). From there, it is the sales team’s job to work with those leads.

Marketers make sure that they keep their pipeline and funnel full all the time so that the sales team has potential customers to contact.

Understanding and knowing the difference is a key part of reaching KPIs and individual sales goals.

Two types of sales teams

Let’s start with the first type of salesperson, the one who has been born and bred this way.

In most cases, marketers know what their job is, the problem comes in with the sales team. 

Marketers often have qualifications and have studied their field, which is why they know or let me say – SHOULD know their role and job specs within the business they work for.

Salespeople, on the other hand, are a different breed altogether.

These guys are often self-motivated and driven, they are go-getters and enjoy the chase.

Related: Effective Sales KPIs

Here are examples

Here are two examples of top global salesmen:

  • Jordan Belfort (Wolf of Wallstreet)
  • G. Kawasaki (Rich Dad, Poor Dad)

In complete contrast to these guys, you get the other type of salesperson.

These are often people who did not get the genetic genes of being driven and hard-wired for sales. They are people who just take the job because they need a job.

This is a sad reality for a lot of people, it is hard to find a job these days, so the idea of “fake it till you make it” has become a starting point.

That, or get fired.

And unfortunately, more times than not, these types of salespeople don’t like making phone calls, it’s like an innate fear to pick up the phone and call a lead.

These people are easy to spot, they shy away from any type of situation where they have to pick up the phone and make that call.

They would rather email, or come up with every excuse under the sun not to pick up the phone and call.

The second type of salesperson is not a total loss though, with some nurturing and coaching, they can quickly become your number one salesperson, they just need the opportunity to develop these skills.

In my experience, a lot of these people have gone on to get outstanding results in sales.

Sales teams and CRMs

In case you didn’t know, a CRM is a customer resource management system. This nifty software, if set up correctly, can take over your entire marketing sales funnel. 

And yes, in the world of business today, one would argue, what is the point of still having sales teams?

Especially if we have brilliant online software systems that can run on autopilot, bringing in the lead, and closing the sale?

Sales teams and human interaction

Because marketing and sales are not only a numbers game anymore, but built on trust as well, you often get those potential customers who want that little bit of human interaction before buying.

They either don’t understand enough to be sold on what you are offering yet, or they don’t trust the online sales systems.

And that is why sales teams are still beneficial and very needed in any business today.

What’s wrong with your sales team?

If both types of salespeople are equally good at their jobs, why do they blame the marketers for poor leads?

Or expect the marketers to close the sales?

The blame game

In my opinion, the first group of salespeople should know better, as they have studied and do know their roles, sometimes they might need to be reminded what their job specs are.

These guys usually do know better, as they may be lazy or just use it as an excuse.

Passing the blame is easier than taking responsibility for their own unmet targets (KPIs).

Sales team without any KPIs

If we look at the other group of salespeople, I would say the problem is a lack of knowledge of their exact roles, this is where KPIs come in.

The fear of the phone

The next problem is the fear of the phone…

Our cell phones have become an integral part of our daily lives, so why are salespeople still battling to reach people on the phone?

And yes, some people still prefer to email or text over having a conversation on the phone. 

Your sales team can then consider alternative means of communicating which don’t require two people to be available at the same time. 

Consider using a CRM platform, where you make use of email marketing, and allow your sales team to email the lead after they have not answered the phone and ask them if they could give them a call at a time that would suit them.

But I still say talking on the phone is critical in the sales process. 

So much is said in between the purpose of a call. So many little cues that can enhance their deal probabilities.

It is the job of your sales team to connect emotionally with your prospective buyer, and this is best done in person or over the phone.

Solution for your sales team

In both of the above cases, this problem can be sorted out very quickly with clearly defined KPIs, if you are not sure what these are, then check out our blog on KPIs.

When you create targeted KPIs for your sales teams they will know that 99,9% of their job is…


Before making the call

Before making the call, the sales team needs to think of themselves as the experts in the field, and instead of cold hard-selling, help the prospect/lead/potential to understand the importance of the offer.

The sales team needs to become intimately familiar with the challenges that their prospect faces and customize a solution targeted to that person’s needs.

Things to cover mentally

You want your sales team to cover and be ready to answer the most common questions prospects ask. 

There is always that one question asked, and your sales team should know how to answer it perfectly.

Write this type of info down in a company memo for your team and they will be ready to answer these types of questions and come across as an expert.

Once you and your sales team have covered these areas, they can now confidently pick up the phone and start contacting leads.

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