As long as your sales team has a phone and a computer, they can do their job almost anywhere. But, unfortunately, as many sales teams move to a remote working environment, an important part of a salesperson's job is forgotten by some companies: call coaching.
The 2021 State of Sales Coaching Report asked 2,000 sales professionals about their recent experience with sales call coaching. Twenty three percent of sales reps said they received less coaching since beginning to work remotely, 16% said they received much less coaching, and 7% said they received no coaching at all.
Coaching is always beneficial. If it has been a while since you've updated your coaching program or need to start from scratch, now is the time. This blog will give you helpful tips and tricks to get started.
What is Call Coaching?
Sales call coaching focuses on improving the skills of salespeople during customer phone calls. This can include teaching active listening and communication skills, building rapport, managing objections, and closing deals. Experienced sales leaders work one-on-one with their sales team to help each person improve their performance and achieve their sales goals.
Studies have shown that companies with a formal sales training process reach 91.2% of their sales quota. Also, organizations with a coaching program see 7% greater revenue year over year. But these are not the only benefits to call coaching.
Four Benefits of Call Coaching
- Improves customer service: Sales call coaching builds better listening and communication skills, leading to a better experience for the customer. Additionally, coaching can help your sales team learn how to handle difficult or uncomfortable situations. Coaching can also ensure consistency among your sales team, resulting in a better customer experience.
- Increases employee confidence and performance: Sales coaching can significantly improve your sales team’s performance. Just two hours per week can increase a salesperson's win rate to as high as 56%. According to RAIN Group data, coaching also increased average deal size, sales activity, and new leads by 25%-40%.
- Boosts employee retention: High employee retention is related to employee engagement and job satisfaction. Coaching contributes to retention by improving the skills and confidence of your sales team, which results in a more positive employee experience.
- Enhances overall business performance: 75% of organizations waste resources due to random and informal coaching approaches. Additionally, coaching can help reduce your sales cycle time by up to 25%. There is a positive ROI of a well-built sales call coaching program.
Five Best Practices for Effective Call Coaching
The best call coaching program includes these best practices.
- Setting goals and expectations: With clear and achievable goals, a coach can focus on the areas of improvement that will best help the sales rep meet their performance targets. Goals can also create accountability and motivation, as each goal is measured and celebrated when achieved.
- Providing constructive feedback: When a coach offers clear and measurable actions for improving performance, it helps sales reps increase their self-awareness and trust in the sales leader. A team culture built on constructive feedback can result in a growth mindset.
- Active listening and empathy: Coaches need active listening skills and empathy to provide guidance and support tailored to each rep's strengths and weaknesses. By empathizing with each team member, coaches can provide more relevant and effective coaching.
- Role-playing and simulation exercises: The most effective learning comes from actual sales calls between your sales reps and their leads. Using real phone conversations, a coach can provide insights into teachable moments and follow up with role-playing and other learning exercises.
- Leverage qualitative and quantitative data: Coaching is only successful if there is a measurable baseline to start and achievable ongoing results. Sales quotas and close rates are just the tip of the iceberg. You can also measure customer conversation sentiment or customer satisfaction scores. Make sure that any performance feedback is connected to actual data you can collect.
Implementing a Call Coaching Program
Here are the steps to start your program today.
- Identify needs and goals: Identify the skills and behaviors critical for success. Assign a KPI for each behavior and measure each person on your team to develop a starting point. This will help you know the needs of individual sales reps and your team as a whole.
- Develop a plan: Use evidence-based techniques to develop an interactive program that helps your sales reps learn by doing.
- Plan a consistent schedule of training both coaches and employees: Just 30 minutes of weekly coaching can impact your team's conversion rates. As your team progresses, the coaches will need support to refine their training techniques.
- Measure success and continuous improvement: There will always be room for improvement, so your coaching program should not have an end date. Instead, establish continuously updated and expanded goals for your sales reps and team.
Tools and Technology for Call Coaching
Because call coaching focuses on an employee's performance during a sales call, the process is easier and more impactful with dedicated software that records and plays back on demand each call for review. Each recording is analyzed by artificial intelligence to measure the quality and content of each conversation. The analysis could include call summaries, alerts on critical keywords, customer sentiment analysis, and more. In addition, coaches can personally review each conversation to pinpoint opportunities and issues. Also, the best call coaching solutions provide detailed analytics and reports on each call and the KPIs important to your team.
If you are in the market for a call coaching software solution, Calldrip offers award-winning software that includes ongoing call coaching, conversation scorecards, customized KPIs, and purpose-driven playbooks.
The software is award-winning because it provides your sales team with innovative guidance, tools, and AI-powered insights to improve sales performance and productivity. These tools include:
- Built-in conversation scorecards that measure performance based on KPIs.
- Call tagging that tracks what's converting.
- Sales Leaderboard that shows who on your team is converting the best.
- Keyword tagging that identifies and escalates critical conversations.
About 50% of sales managers spend less than 30 minutes per week coaching their reps. A dedicated sales call coaching program can be the differentiator that sets your team apart from your competition in the minds and hearts of your customers.
Let our team of experts help you build a custom call coaching program for your business. For more information and pricing on Calldrip's Sales Call Coaching software, click here now.