5 Real Signs that Your Sales Team is in Trouble

Those in sales you know that there ARE some signs you need to watch for, because they'll let you know that your sales team is falling apart. Here are six of the most common signs that your sales team is heading for disaster, along with the fixes you need to keep it from happening. Keep your eyes open for these important signs so you can catch them and nip them in the bud before it's too late.

#1 Negativity

One of the most serious things that can happen to a sales team is for its members to start thinking and talking negatively. Unfortunately, a negative attitude is extremely contagious. Once one team member starts griping and complaining, it's easy for everyone else to jump on the negativity bandwagon.

The fix: DON'T just give a lecture on being more positive and expect the problem to go away. Instead, pay attention to what the grumbling is about, and see what you can do to resolve it. In the future, make sure that team members know that they can come to you with problems or grievances, and you will respond respectfully and appropriately. 

#2 Job Hunting

Do you keep seeing your current employees' resumes listed on job boards? Are they actively seeking new employment? Do you have a higher than normal number of reps quitting on you? When they leave, are they leaving because they got a better offer elsewhere? If your employees are leaving for greener pastures, you have a problem.

The fix: Do some research in your industry to find out whether your salary, commission, and benefits packages are competitive for your area and industry. Again, communication with your reps is key. Find out what they like about working for you, and what they dislike. Don't be afraid to ask departing reps what was more attractive about the new offer. 

#3 Ineffective Meetings

Do you have sales reps who are consistently late to your sales meetings? Or worse, not coming at all? Or maybe everyone is showing up, but they are reluctant to participate or complain about the meetings. If your reps are sleeping through your sales meetings or the meetings don't appear to be motivating them, you may be headed toward problems down the road.

The fix: Perhaps it's time to take a hard look at the content of your sales meetings. Do you have them often enough? Too often? For some teams daily sales meetings are a must, whereas for others more than twice a week might be too much. However, most sales teams need at least a weekly meeting to stay motivated and productive. Are your meetings engaging and motivating? Do they have a good mix of excitement, skills teaching, team building, and just plain fun?

Sales meetings are your most important opportunity to build your sales culture, strengthen bonds of friendship between team members, and teach important sales skills and techniques. Be sure to have regular meetings, and make every moment of those meetings count.

#4 Exhaustion

Sometimes a sales team just seems worn out. This can manifest itself as lack of energy and motivation and low morale. You might find that your sales reps don't interact much with one another when they come in to the office, and it's hard for you to get them excited. This kind of apathy will eventually affect your team's performance if it hasn't already, so you should combat it as soon as you notice it.

The fix: Sales people are not necessarily the best when it comes to balancing work and play, which can lead to burnout. Boost your team's morale by taking them bowling or doing a pizza night. Go to a theme park or a sporting event together. Engineer opportunities for your team to become friends and get to know one another in a non-professional capacity. A happy sales team is a productive sales team!

#5 Missed Quotas

Missed sales quotas are an obvious danger sign, as is any significant drop-off in other sales metrics. They affect your stress levels as the sales manager, but they also cause anxiety for the under-performing reps. Ultimately, if your team gets in the habit of missing quotas, the quotas either become meaningless or lead to mass firings.

The fix: While it can be tempting to blame sales reps for missed quotas, before you jump to conclusions make sure that you have looked at the realities of the market and your quotas are a reasonable reflection of those realities. Implement a systematic way to set quotas, and share your system with your employees so that they can see that the goals are useful and achievable.

Bonus Tip: Get some outside help.

Do you need help revitalizing your sales process? Is it difficult to maintain energy and a positive sales culture? Would you like to figure out how to maintain consistent organic growth? Netpique sales outsourcing can help! Whether you need help on the strategic level, outside sales training, or a complete outsourced sales force, we can find a sales solution for you.