Sales Best Practices

3 Lessons from Day 1 of the Unleash Summit Series: How to Coach through Change

Cari Murray's Avatar

Cari Murray

Senior Manager of Content Marketing

Unlike the debate of whether pineapple belongs on pizza (editor’s note: it does), we can all agree that this year is changing how we operate, manage, and connect.

To help leaders adapt, Outreach is hosting masterclasses throughout September to highlight how to pivot effectively through all this change.

And in case you missed it, here are three of our favorite highlights from the first session.

Sales leaders build stronger teams by redefining success

Outreach VP of Sales David Rubinstein and LaKendra Davis, Assistant VP of Sales at AT&T Business, kicked off the day with a discussion about achieving performance objectives in a shifting sales environment.

LaKendra has 20 years of sales leadership experience and found herself completely reinventing how she’s leading her team — including how she measures success. She used to define success by impact — through new sales, new clients, and new revenue opportunities.

She has thrown out these traditional metrics to focus instead on effort. She’s now zeroing in on levels of engagement with customers, additional levers to pull throughout the sales funnel, and overall employee well-being.

LaKendra’s adaptability embodies strong leadership. She is controlling what she can by adjusting expectations and taking care of her team’s morale.

Empathy is king in the remote sales world

During an interactive roundtable, leaders from Thnks, Highspot, Chorus, and Ringcentral all emphatically emphasized the importance of having empathy for both employees and customers.

One of the silver linings to new social-distancing norms is all the time we’re saving by reducing commutes and business trips. We’re not meeting in person anymore, so we have extra time to master virtual relationship-building.

Focus on creating long-term partnerships with prospects rather than sticking to the traditional buyer-seller model. Invite people to virtual coffee meetings by including a Starbucks gift card with your Zoom request. Facilitate training opportunities for your sales reps to help them sharpen their skills and to demonstrate your willingness to invest in their career growth, even as budgets get cut.

Many of us are still figuring out the right recipe for collaborating virtually — but one key ingredient is remembering that we’re all navigating this new territory together.

The best leaders make everyone smarter

In our closing masterclass, best-selling author Liz Wiseman challenged us to consider, “What kind of leader am I? Am I a Diminisher or a Multiplier?”

“Multipliers” are leaders who exponentially boost the intelligence of everyone around them. They encourage all team members to grow and learn in the ways that best fit their individual skill sets. By amplifying everyone’s full capacity, they get better performance from the whole team.

As you can imagine, “Diminishers” do the opposite. Without naming names, we can all think of managers who have drained our energy, micromanaged our workloads, and reduced our ability (or desire) to perform our best.

Thoughtful leaders encourage employees to tackle difficult tasks, collaborate, and build skills to better serve the team now and in the future.

We wouldn’t volunteer to run a marathon tomorrow if we hadn’t run a mile all year. But if we train properly, a last-minute race doesn’t seem so impossible. Similarly, a sales team with consistent opportunities to grow, learn, and incrementally improve is ready to take on challenges at a moment's notice.

If your team hasn’t been training to conquer a marathon, now is the time to get them in shape. You may find outstanding talent just waiting to be discovered.

Master change with master leadership advice

Ready to gain more actionable insights about how to thrive right now? Check out lessons learned during Day 2 "Pivot strategies and technology to drive better performance."

And sign up for our last session: