Managers of sales teams know that the entire team is rarely “home.” Your staff are regularly on the road, visiting clients and closing deals. Here are seven best practices for strong team management even when your sales professionals are out of the office.
- Get everyone on the same page. Using a uniform communication toolset or project management platform can create a centralized “switchboard” that allows everyone to communicate clearly and stay on the same page. Specialized apps for sales professionals exist, or you can use a more adaptable tool like Evernote.
- Set a standard of over-communication. It’s easier for miscommunication to proliferate when your team is on the road. Set a standard of recording and repeating communication, from recording meetings to replying to emails, to help make sure everyone knows what’s going on.
- “Sit in” on teams. If your remote sales professionals work on teams, sit in with teams regularly to ensure that team members are communicating effectively with one another. Work with team leaders to improve their communication with the team as well.
- Create systems for accountability. Setting goals and expectations and then holding employees accountable is essential when working with any team, particularly a remote one. A daily “check in” in which team members recount what they accomplished that day is an easy way to hold staff accountable even when they’re out of the office.
- Build trust. Teams that don’t trust one another don’t work together, whether they’re in different cubicles or different time zones. Encourage social interaction, communicate regularly, and build a culture with structure and accountability to encourage trust.
- Invest in quality remote-work resources. A BYOD (bring your own device) policy can easily result in incompatible files being shared, and confusion and frustration for everyone on the team. To ensure seamless connection and communication, invest in office devices for remote work that use the same operating system and platforms.
- Hire for remote success. Not all employees thrive in remote work. When hiring, look for those who are self-motivated and hold themselves to a high standard of integrity and productivity. They’re more likely to get their work done, no matter where they’re located.