Sales teams provide a unique opportunity to respond effectively to customer demands and to manage complex buyer-seller relationships.
Sales teams are instrumental in establishing successful strategic relationships and Belbin Team Roles can help make those teams more effective.
Over the last decade, the transformation of sales organisations has seen a rise in the use of sales teams.
Buying behaviour, technology, globalisation, competition and unprecedented external and internal pressures are forcing sales organisations to revisit sales strategies, structures and practices.
Whilst many organisations still recruit and fulfil traditional sales roles, modern selling is moving away from the dyadic relationship between sales representative and customer and towards team-based selling.
The move to sales teams requires significant changes in organisational structures and processes.
For example, a multidisciplinary sales team might incorporate individuals from technical, financial and customer management teams, each bringing specific expertise and understanding at a particular stage of the sales process.
Sales teams provide opportunities for enhanced experiential learning and knowledge sharing, which are far more limited in the traditional model of individual selling.
High-performing sales teams with a focus on collective goal-setting see higher levels of employee engagement and less conflict.
Team-based structures in sales provide a higher quality of work, by combining talents from disparate competency areas.
Effective sales teams can better handle strategic relationships and can acquire and process market-related insights which lead to sustained selling.
When selling teams devise creative solutions to problems, facilitate negotiations, adapt to meet buyer needs or address complaints promptly, customer satisfaction is increased.
As part of the selling process, the collection, analysis and dissemination of customer insights could allow the sales team to help steer the design of future customer solutions.
Other types of added value from sales teams include:
""We have used Belbin Team Roles to help negotiation teams come together more effectively and to display the right behaviors at the right point in the negotiation process."
Professor Javier Marcos, Professor of Strategic Sales Management and Negotiation, Cranfield School of Management.
Groups become teams when a shared and common purpose is understood, when there are clear performance standards and procedures, and when team members hold themselves mutually accountable for achieving results.
Teams are characterised by having high levels of complementary skills. In other words, different Team Roles are present and allowed to contribute.
Effective sales teams share a number of characteristics with other teams.
However, they operate in more fast-paced, less predictable environments, making some qualities more salient or more relevant than for non-sales teams:
There are three key ways in which Belbin Team Roles theory can assist sales organisations design and develop effective sales teams.
Each individual within a selling team has unique contributions to make to sales processes.
The key to increased sales effectiveness is to recognise and nurture those contributions. Different Team Roles can be used effectively in a number of sales processes.
We would love to work with you to boost the performance of your sales teams. Please contact us for more information.
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