Managing anyone remotely is difficult by itself and when it comes to sales, the stakes are raised.
Sales is the single most valuable pillar for every B2B company so it’s important you get it right. With today’s remote work environment, there are some awesome new opportunities but managing your team remotely is certainly a new challenge for all of us.
In this article we’ll be covering everything you need to know about managing a sales team remotely. We’re going to be sharing popular tactics and even some of our own unique processes that we’ve found to be extremely helpful.
Let’s dive in!
Tactics to Manage a Remote Sales Team
Getting your team to show up to work everyday is one of the hardest aspects of managing a remote sales team. Using lightweight accountability measures is an awesome way to nudge your team in the right direction.
Below are a few tactics that have been popularized by the remote sales teams, including our own.
Tactic #1) Weekly Team Meetings
Weekly team meetings where you review metrics are a great way to hold everyone accountable. We cover measuring metrics later on in this article but this recurring meeting is where you’ll review them.
There’s no need to criticize your team in this meeting. The goal is to review the metrics in a public setting and point out where the team is falling short or excelling.
At the end of the meeting, everyone will be aware that you are tracking their performance and will feel a sense of accountability and pressure.
If one team member is behind the rest, this is not the place to meet on it. Book a 1:1 meeting with that individual to review their performance.
Tactic #2) Record Meetings
Recording meetings is a simple way to check on your team’s performance.
If your team is crushing metrics, this isn’t all that useful. But as soon as a sales team member begins to fall behind, you can use recorded demos and meetings as a way to identify what it is that they are doing wrong and work with them on improving.
Another awesome benefit is that recording meetings adds additional pressure - similar to weekly meetings. Employees aren’t being watched at home so recording calls will ensure they stick to the script and put in effort on every call.
Tactic #3) Daily Rundowns
Is your team up in the morning? Are they showing up? These questions can be easily answered by asking your team for daily rundowns before a specific time like 9am. Here at LeadLoft, we call these Start of Days (SODs) and End of Days (EODs).
It’s a really effective management tactic that forces your team to get up on time and to map out their day in a public setting - generally on a Slack Channel.
Here’s a quick example of what one might look like:
• Cold calling from 8am-12pm
• 2 Closing Calls with ACCOUNT NAME and ACCOUNT NAME
• Trying to resurface some deals that have gone quiet.
• Connecting with TEAM MEMBER on how to close ACCOUNT NAME.
Unfortunately, this tactic isn’t all that applicable to full time SDRs and BDRs. In this case, you’ll need to rely on activity metrics - which we’ll cover next.
Metrics to Track
The first step to managing any team well, is to set metrics. This provides your team with something to chase and once you identify the most valuable metrics to your team, you can track and review them to ensure your team is staying on track.
Measuring metrics is also a great way to improve metrics. What do I mean? Well, an amazing trick to sales is that if you measure it, it will improve. I truly believe this and have seen it happen within our own team. In many ways, reviewing metrics as a team holds people accountable. No one wants to be the slacker, especially when the whole team has visibility into who is slacking and who is performing.
So what metric should you track?
Metric #1) Leads Prospected
If you’re running outbound sales, tracking the number of leads prospected is one of the most important aspects of your funnel. It provides you with insight into the top of your funnel. If this is your main source of leads and your team is 50% short of their prospected quota, you can be sure this will cause problems down the funnel.
If you have a marketing team, you’ll also want to track the marketing
Metric #2) Leads Contacted for the First Time
The next most important metrics is leads contacted for the first time. This is the measurement of how many leads were contacted for the first time in a given time period. In most cases, it measures the number of new leads entering into new playbooks (also known as sequences).
Metric #3) Sales Activity
Activity is one of the most important aspects of sales and if you have SDRs / BDRs, it’s even more important. What is sales activity? Sales activity is any action used for outreach. This includes emails sent, calls made, and even linkedIn messages sent.
As a manager, activity tells you who is actively running outreach and who isn’t. If your team has a couple weeks of low activity, this is guaranteed to lead to fewer meetings and less revenue down the road.
Metric #4) Meetings Taken
The 4th most important metric is meetings taken. This is the total number of meetings in a given week. Meetings are another important metric because without them, you have no revenue.
Depending on your team, meetings can be calls, zoom meetings, or even in person meetings.
Regardless, make sure you track how many meetings your team is having because low meeting volumes can come back to haunt you.
Metric #5) Value of Deals Closed
The last and most important metric to track is the value of deals closed. Although many of the previous metrics are extremely important, revenue is always the most important.
Tracking the value of the deals your team is closing can provide insight into where you are falling short. If revenue is down, you should always look back on the metrics mentioned above to see if they are responsible for the decrease. Try to identify which is responsible for the decrease in revenue and role out a solution or put additional pressure on your team.
Managing a sales team remotely can be difficult because it’s new but many companies have found ways to manage their sales teams remotely and new applications are popping up every day to make it that much easier. If you found this helpful and are looking for a software solution to help you scale your remote sales, check out LeadLoft or learn more from our resources below.