Imagine the following scenario: You hire a new sales team member. On her first day, she asks you, “What do you expect of me?” You, as the owner of the business, say, “I want you to sell flowers”.
According to Jason Jordan of Forbes’ Salesforce, that answer isn’t just obvious, it’s also not helpful — and it could be holding your business back. Nonetheless, Jordan argues, it’s the kind of answer salespeople receive all the time from owners and managers, across industries. What’s more, even the slightly more detailed, “I want you to sell $xx flowers every week,” isn’t much more helpful to that new hire, or even a seasoned team member looking for feedback.
“[Your salespeople] know you expect them to hit their number,” Jordan said. “Instead, take the time to help them decide what they actually need to do. I promise you they will appreciate it, and you might get that [sales] number.”
Floral Management contributor Tim Huckabee of FloralStrategies doles out tips every month on how to train your sales team to provide better service and score higher sales. To better support your team, arm your staff with some of his top practical insights, including:
Get the card message first. “Happy 30th anniversary to the love of my life!” begs for a different design starting price than “That was a fun first date.” Train your team to ask for the sentiment before they suggest designs.
Be confident about services. Customers are calling your shop because they know you’ll meet their needs, which can include same-day delivery. Salespeople selling from their own pockets can fall into the bad habit of presenting some services in the form of a question: “Our delivery fee is $XX, is that OK?” Help your staff learn to confidently present your services to customers in statements, not questions.
Ask questions. A pet peeve for Hucakbee when he calls flower shops with test orders? Staff members who don’t ask questions or make comments on the order. A card message like “Jim was such a wonderful man; our prayers are with your family” demands a comment from the salesperson (“I’m sorry for your loss.”). That dialogue will help elevate your team member from the role of order-taker, creating an emotional connection that customers will remember
Get (many) more tips on how to train your team for higher sales by reading Huckabee’s monthly column in Floral Management, including his recent take on why it’s bad practice to be pushy with