Optimizing your remote sales team is more important than ever. Why? Because hybrid work is here to stay. And the truth is sales teams have already been running remotely for decades.
Sales managers will continue to play an integral part in helping their companies evolve with business needs. One way to make an impact is by having a good foundation to support their remote sales teams.
At Telesales Gurus, we’re no strangers to remote work. Here are things we’ve known about building a remote sales team even before it became a necessity during the 2020 pandemic.
Must Have Technical Skills For Remote Sales Teams
When hiring home-based sales professionals, it’s crucial to select people with unique skill sets.
From a technical perspective, each team member will need:
Remote sales team members need to be agile for many reasons. Above all, they need to be technologically agile. In remote environments especially, they will endure various system changes and have to troubleshoot computer issues on their own. On a day-to-day basis, they’ll be in and out of multiple applications across different devices. So, it’s helpful to hire based on the ability to adapt to almost any system.
Most CRMs are intuitive for people with experience. Beyond knowing how to work in a CRM tool, understanding how to use it to maximize productivity is a major plus.
Most of the clients we work with are in G-Suite. The system is user-friendly and conducive to creating a highly collaborative remote environment. Microsoft Office also continues to be extremely important. The best remote sales teams are well-versed in applications like Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint, Word, video meeting platforms, and their equivalents across operating systems.
Written & Verbal Communication
Communication is vital in sales, and even more so when you go remote. Taking out most or all in-person interactions can result in severe misunderstandings if not appropriately handled. You want to work with people that articulate thoughts and ideas well over text and in conversation. It will make your everyone’s lives easier, and it’s a must for serving your customers.
Managing a remote sales team will sometimes feel like babysitting, but it shouldn’t. Reps that need micromanagement should not work from home. The sales department’s main objective is to bring revenue to the company on time. Therefore, the ability to meet deadlines and stay focused while working independently are non-negotiables for remote sales hires.
Personal Qualities to Look Out For
Now that we’ve covered technical skills, we can’t forget personal attributes. Several characteristics are uncompromisable if you want to blow your sales goals out of the water. These are:
An ideal remote sales team member will feel comfortable working on their own. They should be able to think independently and use good judgment. They will also need to know when it’s appropriate to ask questions and be able to push the envelope when needed.
Engagement with the rest of the team and responsiveness make for a collaborative virtual environment. Someone who answers messages within a reasonable amount of time, returns calls promptly, and loves to collect and share information through human interaction will likely be ideal.
Working from any location these days comes with interruptions and snafus. Great sales agents don’t get frustrated easily when things don’t go as planned or there are technical issues. They stay focused on their goals and improvise as needed to get the job done.
A sales manager can’t know what their sales force is doing every moment of the day. They shouldn’t want to know, either. What should matter most is the results. When choosing individuals for their remote sales team, they should look for integrity, dependability, and ability to deliver as defining traits.
Some people are only motivated when working in an office with a manager and other associates. They aren’t necessarily bad, but they aren’t fit for a remote team. Only employees that are self-driven and can self-manage to a degree should work without supervision.
What To Look For in An Outsourced Sales Team
If your company doesn’t have the time or need to build a full-time remote sales team, it may be better to outsource this function.
When outsourcing your sales to a short or long-term vendor, it will still benefit you to know what caliber of people will be representing your company. To assess the quality of an outsourced sales team, you can ask about:
- The company’s hiring and training process
- Their performance management method
- The company’s outbound sales process
- Team structure
- Agent tenure
- Past results
The answers will provide you insight into whether your outsourced business development partner has the know-how to manage a remote sales team. They will also indicate what kind of service you’ll get and the type of experience your prospects or clients will have.
Good luck as you continue your remote sales journey! If you have any questions about how we can help you improve or integrate into your remote sales department, drop us a comment or send us a message for a free consultation.
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