World-class sales leaders use KPIs to achieve operational excellence. Crappy managers use KPIs to micromanage the hell out of their reps.
How is it that, the same KPIs in the hands of two different managers can have such a vastly different impact on sales productivity, employee engagement, and attrition?
In short, it all comes down to two things:
I’ll briefly explain what I mean.
Crappy managers rely on their positional power and try to mandate what reps must do:
“Our pipelines are weak; I need more PG. I need you to do more cold calls… more emails… more discovery calls… more demos… more POCs!”
Crappy managers sit on the sidelines, conflate activity with impact—but don’t actually help their people achieve anything.
World-class sales leaders of high-performance teams are different. They’re management approach is based on connection and influence.
Conceptually, they don’t sit across from the table in an adversarial way as their manager. They sit side by side with them on the same side of the table—as their coach—deeply invested in their personal success and committed to their professional development.
The relationship dynamics with their team is not transactional—it’s transformational.
Their intention isn’t to just make their number. Their intention is to transform their people by helping them to realize their potential.
World-class sales leaders strive to achieve operational excellence so that everyone on the team is successful and to ensure that the organization is in a better place when they leave, than when they arrived.
World-class sales leaders understand the importance of clarifying what “good” looks like as far as KPIs are concerned. However, that’s not their first priority.
Their first priority is creating a connection with their people and an environment that is conducive to coaching and continuous improvement.
They understand that when the proper environment is created, the KPIs become less of a management exercise and more about helping your people achieve their personal dreams, goals, career aspirations—their WHY.
World-class sales leaders focus on creating a culture of ownership, where their people are committed to the outcomes the business needs them to achieve for reasons that are very important to them on a personal level.
THIS is what sales leadership is all about.