High-impact sales coaching techniques you need in 2022

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This is a podcast episode titled, High-impact sales coaching techniques you need in 2022. The summary for this episode is: <p>Want to know how Hootsuite, Indeed, and Drift successfully coach their sales teams at scale? Sadie McGraw, Manager of Commercial Sales at Gong, knows that sometimes even coaches need coaching. In this Celebrate replay, Sadie moderates a discussion with this highly-experienced panel of sales leaders:</p><ul><li>Niki Phillips, Director of Mid-Market at Hootsuite</li><li>Nick Christolos, Senior Mid-Market Sales Manager at Drift</li><li>Mona Sheth, Director of Learning and Development at Indeed</li></ul><p><br></p><p>They teach us how to scale individualized, data-driven motivational coaching and cover both the challenges (and solutions) for experiencing success in coaching sales skills, deal execution, and motivation. If you’re a sales leader looking to level up your team in 2022, hit play now.</p><p><br></p><p>Key Takeaways:</p><p>04:04&nbsp;-&nbsp;06:24 Impactful stories about coaches throughout careers</p><p>09:02&nbsp;-&nbsp;10:16 How to individualize your coaching strategy for each of your reps</p><p>12:19&nbsp;-&nbsp;14:22 Coaching tips our experts swear by</p><p>17:35&nbsp;-&nbsp;20:23 How to detect deal risk before it's too late</p><p>23:51&nbsp;-&nbsp;26:14 Don't leave anything up to chance!</p><p>29:39&nbsp;-&nbsp;31:03 A key component to coaching is understanding each individual's motivators</p><p><br></p><p>Want to explore Revenue Intelligence for your org? It starts here: <a href="https://www.gong.io/revenue-intelligence/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.gong.io/revenue-intelligence/</a></p><p>Connect with Devin Reed: <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/devinreed/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.linkedin.com/in/devinreed/</a></p><p>Connect with Sheena Badani: <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/sheenabadani/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.linkedin.com/in/sheenabadani/</a></p>
Impactful stories about coaches throughout careers
02:20 MIN
How to individualize your coaching strategy for each of your reps
01:14 MIN
Coaching tips our experts swear by
02:03 MIN
How to detect deal risk before it's too late
02:47 MIN
Don't leave anything up to chance!
02:22 MIN
A key component to coaching is understanding each individual's motivators
01:24 MIN

Devin Reed: Welcome to the show. You are now part of Reveal: The Revenue Intelligence Podcast powered by Gong. We're your hosts, Devin Reed...

Sheena Badani: ...and I'm Sheena Badani. Revenue intelligence is a new way of operating based on customer reality, instead of opinions. It's an unfiltered view of your customer reality. In other words, making data- driven decisions based on facts instead of opinions or guess work.

Devin Reed: And it's made up of three success pillars, people success, deal success and strategy success, the things all revenue teams need and care about. Every week we interview senior revenue professionals and they share their stories and insights on how they leverage revenue intelligence to drive success and win their market.

Sheena Badani: You'll hear how modern go- to- market teams win as a team, close revenue with critical deal insight and execute their strategic initiatives, plus all the challenges that come along with it. Coaching your team to success is hard. On this episode, we're sharing a panel discussion from Celebrate, Gong's Revenue Intelligence Summit. Sadie McGraw, Manager of Commercial Sales at Gong, leads a conversation with three all- star coaches, Niki Phillips, Director, Mid- Market at Hootsuite, Nick Christolos, Senior Mid- Market Sales Manager at Drift and Mona Sheth, Director of Learning and Development at Indeed. They share their best tips for enabling your team in three key areas, sales skills, deal execution and motivation. From navigating coaching challenges to nailing individualized data- driven coaching, this crew has got you covered. Let's dive in as Sadie shares how yoga taught her an important lesson that she's applied to sales coaching.

Sadie McGraw: I noticed that as a student, as a rep, I often gravitated toward wanting to help my peers hone their craft. And I quickly realized that I was so much more fulfilled by their wins, that I was a part of, than the wins that I was having on my own. So now, I've been a sales manager and a yoga instructor for about eight years. And one of my biggest learnings has been that the one- size- fits- all approach just does not work. So imagine that I asked you all to stand up, put your hands on the floor, and kick your legs in the air, and do a handstand. Likely, most of us, myself included, would fall on our faces. And the reason is that we're not all the same. What I tell one of you, I would need to tell the other something very different to get you up into a handstand. So I would need to see your Yogi game tape and use your unique anatomy to successfully coach you into a handstand. And it's the same way with sales managers. We have to watch our rep's game tape. We have to use specific data, that's specific to that person, to actually, successfully coach them to greatness. So for me, that satisfaction that I get from doing this type of coaching, watching my reps transform, experiencing them accomplishing their personal and professional goals is the main reason that I absolutely love my job. So it's really no surprise that I found my way to Gong, where I get to partner with my reps every day to teach other sales leaders how to nail individualized, data- driven, motivational coaching. Now, please join me in welcoming Nick Christolos, Senior Mid- Market Sales Manager at Drift, Mona Sheth, Director of Learning and Development at Indeed and Niki Phillips, Director of Mid- Market at Hootsuite. As a quick intro, I would love to hear from you guys and gals a story about a coach that made a significant impact either on your life or on your career. So Niki, please kick us off.

Niki Phillips: Thank you, Sadie. When I think about one of my early career mentors, shout out to Ross Morgan at TouchBistro, he really laid the framework for me being a successful salesperson. And I always think of two things that he preached. And one is be bold. So too many salespeople, they tiptoe around the prospect and it can create a kind of power imbalance where you think your time is less valuable. So he always taught me ask the tough questions, set expectations, value your own time and energy. And two, he coached on the importance of reverse engineering your sales process and not winging it. So have a plan, have a process, have metrics that you hold yourself accountable to and you're way more likely to be successful.

Nick Christolos: Hi, everyone. My name is Nick. I've been in tech for many years, but my love for coaching started long before tech on the football field, actually. I learned that a great coach cares about the team, but cares more about the success of the individual than anything else. In middle school, my coach actually moved me out of the position I spent my entire life playing. And years later, he told me I could have done well in that position, but I lacked the knowledge of other positions to be great. Nowadays, I try to take that same lesson from my football coach to my sales team and help find their super powers, while still adding to other competencies.

Mona Sheth: Hi, I'm Mona Sheth and I have a little bit of a different story. I really had a life- changing moment from a coach, who was actually a fellow coach in training when I was going through and getting my coaching certification. So both of us were going through this program at Columbia. He was my partner that day. And he was supposed to give me feedback on my coaching. And so I did my little coaching shpiel on him and then he gave me feedback. And he said," Mona, when you're talking to somebody and having a coaching conversation with them, think of it like they're playing cards and they have a hand full of cards that you can't see. Every time they share a piece of information or a piece of their life, whether it's tiny or large, they're showing you one card of their hand." And that blew me away, because it was such a great lesson in not being in my own head, to think about what the next question was, and what do I have to ask, and come up with smart questions. It was just listen to what they're already giving you and go off of those cards that you see in their hand.

Sadie McGraw: Thank you all for sharing that. And I'll round us out by sharing my story. So the most impactful coach I had was my manager at LinkedIn when I first became an SD manager. So I would say the theme of our coaching relationship was he let me fail. So instead of telling me what to do, he asked questions to guide me to the answers on my own. And my team was really struggling when I took them over. So did it take a lot longer to turn the ship around, because he didn't give me just the answers that probably would've gotten us there faster? Yes, it took a long time. But, what I learned in that process fueled my success and my reps' success ever since. And I think what really stuck out to me is how empowered I felt to challenge my team and also support them in a way that I hadn't before. So while we have all been so fortunate, that's not the case for everyone. There are a lot of organizations out there that are not coaching effectively, or they don't leverage data to coach. And what ends up happening is that reps are not growing. They're not winning. And if they haven't left yet, there's a very high likelihood that they will. And so when this happens, everyone, including the organization, ends up losing. So no matter which type of organization you work for right now, whether it's coaching, it's at the forefront of every conversation, or coaching is something you're unsure even of the definition of, we all are sales managers that do this, because we want to make our people better and we want to make them more successful. What that means is we often find ourselves asking questions, like," What do I coach on? Where do I even start?" And then you figure that out and you think," Well, how do I coach to that? And when do I coach to that?" My second favorite question is, how do you actually use data to coach versus just relying on your intuition and your experience? And finally, how do you use coaching to create an environment where people can grow, excel and take accountability? So Nick, I want to start with you. We've got so many flavors. We've got different flavors of reps. We've got different flavors of data. So I want to start broad. What data do you actually use? And what actions do you take to individualize coaching for your reps?

Nick Christolos: I think there's a balance of art and science, as everybody knows, when it comes to sales. And I'm much more of the art than the science. But I'll go ahead and start with the science. And I think my favorite piece of data is something I pulled from Gong a few months back. And it's number of contacts associated to an opportunity to see how wide we really are on the account. I pretty much learned that if we don't have four points of contact on the opportunity, the deal's not closing. Of course, there's going to be the bluebirds that come in, where you have one or two points of contact that previously used your product, and it closes. But that, to me, is the single most important piece of data to be able to have a good insight on the deal. When it comes to the art, I think that ultimately, data will never replace doing the actual work. Managers have to spend time listening to calls each week and to hear their reps' voices on the phone with prospective clients to be able to individualize that coaching. I focus on doing one call review per rep per week, and it's the best part of my week, because I get to see their performance in the field and then use that content to tailor one- to- one coaching. Remote world group coaching can be a little bit tough in Zoom. People can hide behind the mute button. But when you get into that one- to- one coaching, that's really how you get reps over their challenges.

Sadie McGraw: I love that you brought up the number of contacts in a deal, because I'm pretty sure Niki was going to share something about that, too. Niki, you want to jump in?

Niki Phillips: In the topic of providing feedback to reps, one, I'm a very big believer it has to be timely and specific. And this has to be backed up with data or else they're not really going to believe in it. So this is what I love. In the Insight section of Gong, for my team, right now, it shows that our win rates double when we have three or more contacts. So educating reps on why it's critical to have multiple stakeholders engaged and support that with actual data, I find that's very effective.

Sadie McGraw: Is there any specific way, Niki, as you think about delivering feedback, you mentioned the timely piece, is there any way that you hold your reps accountable to actually implementing that feedback? Once you've had the conversation, what are your follow- up steps?

Niki Phillips: People respect what you expect, so being consistent every week with measuring the same things, highlighting it, get getting that drilled in, I think that that's key. Lastly, I think you also have to ask your reps to provide feedback. So as an early manager I was always so quick to give the answer. At TouchBistro I was promoted from AE to manager and, of course, I knew all the answers. I knew the product. I knew the objections. And I felt like that actually hurt me as a coach and hurt me, keeping everybody accountable, because I was so quick to give those answers. So I think a good sales coach gives the space for the reps to be introspective, and hold themselves accountable, and come back with the answer, and kind of co- create a strategy for coaching.

Sadie McGraw: I love that idea of co- creating a strategy. I'm excited to hear from you, Mona, because you have a very interesting and unique perspective in this conversation today, since your full- time job is to coach people like me, Niki and Nick on how to be incredible coaches. Can you share some stories of tips or a tip that you swear by?

Mona Sheth: So inaudible my favorite part of my job is to work with leaders and learn from them, teach them, encourage them and really being able to share that information. So, Sadie, I know you mentioned in the beginning that sometimes that first question of somebody trying to coach is," Where do I start?" And I think the best tip that I've learned over watching multiple sales leaders, but I'm thinking of two in particular, two senior sales leaders that are in the business right now, watching them I've learned that really the best tip is to know what do my reps, or whomever you're coaching, whether that's another leader or an individual contributor, what do they need right now? And so what do I mean by that? I mean, do they need training? Do they need coaching? Or do they need the answer? And sometimes what they want versus what they need are two different things. So really focusing on what they need right now. And an example is, we have people who are on the phone with clients day in, day out. And in that moment, if a rep is maybe stuck on something or doesn't have the answer, they look to their manager, when we were in the office, sometimes when you're shadowing calls or you can get a ping, but they're looking to their manager to maybe help them right in that moment. And in that moment they don't need coaching. They don't need to be asked," What do you think you should do? What do you think the answer is?" That's not the right thing at the right moment, because that'll let the rep lose credibility with the client. So really it's identifying what in that moment is needed. And in that moment, an answer is needed. Afterwards, you can pull back and say," Hey, I gave you that answer. How do you think I got to it? Let's talk about it. Let's figure it out." So that's been the number one tip is not to always assume that coaching is the right answer for everything. But really, what does that person need now? And then how can I weave in coaching whenever the time is right for a learning opportunity to happen?

Sadie McGraw: So well said. And I think it's important just, if you don't mind sharing, just the distinction between, in your mind, coaching, training and teaching. How do you define crosstalk?

Mona Sheth: Yeah, that they're all kind of intertwined, but I see training as really getting educated on something. So a lot of new hires will need that training. They'll get information on the business, on the products, on the processes. That can also be applied to someone who's new in a new role, a new manager. So we do training for them as well, because we want to teach them some of the foundational pieces of learning that they need to then build on. And then when you think of coaching, it's really asking questions, challenging, getting the person to come to the conclusion on their own with some of that support where needed from their leader or peers. And so that's the distinction that I see between training, coaching. And then teaching is kind of, I think, you could tie that into coaching and say," Hey, here's some experiences that I've experienced myself or that I know this peer of yours has gone through. And let me tell you the story and the situation and what I learned from it." So there's this teaching component where you're kind of getting experience from somebody else as well.

Sadie McGraw: Spot on. And I think when I learned that those differentiations between those words as a manager, it completely changed the way that I was approaching my conversations with my reps. So I'd be curious to hear, Nick, anything come to mind as you think about how you decide when the right moment is to give teaching, or coaching, or set up a training?

Nick Christolos: The most important, in my eyes, matter of this always is timing. If you get off a tough conversation with a customer and your rep went a route that you thought maybe we shouldn't have gone, it might not be the time to give that coaching moment or slap the hand there. I think it's the importance of just having an open dialogue with your rep on like," Hey, what do you need in this moment right now? Do you need a shoulder to lean on? Or do you need to actually break this down and pull up Gong and review this entire call to figure out where we went south?"

Niki Phillips: Yeah, Mona, I love what you said, where sometimes people just need the answer, right? And this is where emotional intelligence comes into play and proper people management. It's a case- by- case basis. And you kind of have to read the room and figure out what they want.

Sadie McGraw: So, so true. So I'd love to transition us. We've talked about the sales skills thus far, so the quality of our reps' customer interactions. I want to transition to deal execution coaching, which is more focused on the quality of the actual sales cycle. So as managers, our job is to spot risk in these deal cycles and then arm our people with strategies that will allow them to address the risk so that they can increase the likelihood of closing the deal. Niki, I know that you have a ton of people that are reporting to you right now. You have so many priorities to balance. So I'd love to hear how do you detect deal risk before it's too late? And then how do you coach people through it?

Niki Phillips: So I think in an ideal world, you want to get ahead of deal risk and you want to have a checklist of common pitfalls that usually will stall deals. So you want to incorporate this checklist as part of your sales process, and this will help drive behavior within your deals and help you coach better and identify deal risk early. And this is where I find the deal warnings in Gong extremely helpful, because they can flag these risks early. And often reps don't even know that the deal's at risk, because they're just heads down, living in the deal. So I love these warnings, because they kind of act like an objective third party that say," Have we thought about this?" So I find that that's very helpful. And another thing that I found very effective with coaching reps through deal risk is peer assessment and peer discussion with early stage opportunities. So for example, on my team, we've got a weekly standing key deals meeting where, as a team, we have new reps present deals. They ask questions to help identify early risk on deals and they give their input and can say," I lost a deal over this a couple weeks ago." So I find that this is a very effective and scalable way to get multiple eyes and identify deal risk at these peer assessment meetings.

Sadie McGraw: Nick or Mona, do you guys have anything at Drift or Indeed that's focused on peer- to- peer deal coaching?

Nick Christolos: We have a weekly call review session on Fridays that we go ahead and we actually bring up the call, listen to the entire thing, talk about what might have went south, whoever headed in that direction. And then we'll break it down and say," Okay," whoever was in the hot seat," what advice do you have for them going into their next call?" What are the three to five questions they need to ask their" champion" before the conversation? Maybe if it's even an email before the call, what do they need to do to move this forward? And some of those conversations between the peers is better coaching that I could have ever given.

Mona Sheth: One role that we like to leverage on our sales team is our team lead role and that's a role between individual contributors and managers, so they're on the path towards management. And so we like to leverage those team leads to really be able to provide that coaching and mentorship and also prep them in future management role. So it's a great pipelining tool, individuals in the role. But it also, you're learning from someone who's done a great job and has continued to perform, and you're still learning from a peer. So there's this different perspective that reps are getting, because they're learning not only from their managers, but from their team leads as well. And then there are a lot of different settings through team meetings. And we have something called of Monday Morning Meetings, where we're talking about one topic that the manager brings to the table and allows everybody to share. So whatever it is that's relevant for that team to be talking about that week can come up.

Sadie McGraw: Nick, I have a question for you. So picture yourself, it's just another manic Monday. Your forecast is due. Your Slack is blowing up. You're back- to- back with meetings. Please tell us how do you prioritize which deals to focus on?

Nick Christolos: I feel like my stress just went up from going through that, just now, because it's so real, right? Especially remote, Slack is the number one way you communicate. And I feel like at all times of the day I have 50 plus notifications. There's always going to be chaos. I don't remember the last day where I was like," Wow, that was such an easy day. I had no calls, no emails. That was so chill." It's always going to happen. So you have to ultimately know your top three to five deals that are going to get you and your team over your number. Of course, every business is different and some ASPs can range, but everyone has those top opportunities that they have to focus on. We use Clarity, so it makes it pretty easy for me to be able to see the opportunities where they're forecasted, the stages. But I look at it like you need to know the ins and outs of those deals as if your CRO or your VP of Sales is going to call you. So I try to just think about what do I not know about this opportunity? Because I'm going to get a call at some point, where my boss is going to say," What's the risk associated to this opportunity? Why is it in most likely? And why is it not in commit?" And if I can't answer that, then I'm in a bad spot. So I look at it like you need to know those deals as strong as reps do. And you also should just look in the mirror and check yourself. If you are not on the phone or involved with those top deals, you're probably spending your time in the wrong place. And an example is at the end of the last quarter, there were a couple big opportunities out there. And there were some calls taking place. And there were maybe some sidebar conversations, but I was talking with one of my reps and she was like," No, I need you on this call." And I looked at it and I had all of these internals and I just reached out to my boss and I was like," Hey, I got to get off these internals. I need to join these customer calls." So make sure you're spending your time in the right place.

Sadie McGraw: That's so true. One thing we've started talking about is, especially working from home, you can't see what everyone else is doing and how they're spending their day. So taking ownership over when you need to say no is so important, whether you're a manager or a rep. But I love that you did that and stood up for what you know was going to have the largest impact on your team's success, which is focusing on these deals. Now, saying no to meetings is one way. But are there any other ways that you hold yourself accountable, Nick, to making sure you're always staying on top of these deals?

Nick Christolos: Yeah. I have a little bit of OCD in me. And so at the end of the day, I kind of go through Clarity and I look at each opportunity. And I'm like," What did we do to move these forward?" And if I don't know, I either wasn't close enough to my rep up that day, or we didn't have a good game plan for that deal, to do something to inch that deal to a close.

Sadie McGraw: And you do that every day?

Nick Christolos: I do do that every day.

Sadie McGraw: Wow. Time blocked off on the calendar?

Nick Christolos: No, it's just become a habit, but it should be a time block at this point.

Sadie McGraw: I mean, for those of us that might be starting that and stealing it from you, we probably will have to start with the time block. But man, that's amazing that you've made it part of your habit every single day. That's awesome. Any other advice? Mona, any thoughts on what you've seen from leaders on how they hold themselves to both coaching deal strategy and execution, while also skills and behavior? How do they stay on top of deals, but also be coaching their people?

Mona Sheth: Yeah, it's a tough one for sure, because there's a lot that makes up that one rep and then you have a team of multiple reps. And so one thing we like to do is we've tried to create a process around it so that we're not leaving it really up to chance. We're trying to give guidance and support from a learning and development standpoint. And so what we've done is create something called the coaching diaries for our sales leaders. And with that, we really focus on three key things that they should be focusing on when thinking about coaching a rep. And those three things are their calls. So we use Gong for that. And also providing training and support to say," Here are the things you can listen to. Here are the themes you want to hear from your reps. What are opportunities? What are challenges?" The second thing is really deals in pipeline management, so within the system, are they set up for success? Both of those, I think are a little bit easier to track, because there's numbers involved. There's data. There's metrics. The third one is a little bit harder, which is how are these reps showing up for work each day? How are they showing up for themselves? How are they showing up for their teams and their clients? And that's more on that professionalism, behavioral side. But we want sales leaders to coach to that as well. One stat that I was looking at, it was from a Gartner study in 2019, was that managers spent 9% of their time coaching to professional development of their reps. But 70% of reps and employees feel like they're not actually developed yet for their current job. And forget a future role. So one thing that's really important is, when you think of a new job, you want to make sure you have really great performance, but you also need that EQ and that behavioral piece tied in. So we really allow them to have that guidance through these coaching diaries. And then we track them through KPIs that we've worked with these senior leaders in sales to agree on. For example, one KPI is time. We do ask that leaders are coaching 30 minutes per week per rep. But then just making sure you're covering your entire team and giving them the same equal opportunity in that coaching.

Sadie McGraw: That's amazing. I will say anytime that we are... It almost feels like more consulting when someone buys Gong and then we're trying to tell them," Here's how to create a culture of coaching." That idea of specific metrics for managers is essential to making sure that it gets adopted and then you're tracking that over time. I think that does really transition us to the next section, which is all about motivation coaching. And the reason why I think this transitions well is because you mentioned this third category. We've got our sales skills. We've got deal execution that we're coaching to. But then there's this other area of professionalism. And then we've got another area of motivation and they blend together in a lot of ways. But I want to focus on motivation, because I think it is a very juicy, polarizing topic. I have spent many happy hours with different sales leaders debating if, one, can you even coach motivation? Or does it have to be inherent? And two, if you can do it, how the heck do you go about it? So I would love to hear from Mona, if you can tell us a little bit about what you've seen, or maybe what you've coached leaders to do, to go that extra mile, to unlock motivation amongst their reps.

Mona Sheth: Like you said, this is the trickiest thing of all, I think, because when you think of motivation, there's the external factors. So I think we have more control over that through leadership, through our company and organization. So what are those extras? Salary, bonus, comp and benefits around those things. But then there's that intrinsic part. And that part is very personal. So how do you coach to that? How do you make someone feel motivated if they don't connect to something that they're doing every day? And so I found that while it is hard, it is a leader's responsibility to be someone who can find that personal motivator and connect it as much as possible to the work and to the mission of either what they're doing or what they're doing it for, who they're doing it for. So for example, if you think about the day- to- day of a sales role, there's commonalities amongst all sales roles in some way, right? So that day- to- day. Now, somebody might not feel like that is the fire that fuels them. But can you connect that back to the larger mission of the company? So at Indeed, our mission is we help people get jobs. Can you tie in what you do every single day and how that actually connects to somebody getting a job, which is their livelihood, which is really important? So finding what it is. And you have to do that through conversations. And that's where coaching comes into play. It's asking good questions, being really curious, not just using coaching for the day- to- day of the role, but really to get to understand the person, because that's how we'll make that connection. And then at the end of the day, it takes two. So that rep needs to also find that motivation for themselves as well.

Sadie McGraw: Niki, how do you continue to put what you find out in that one- on- one, how do you continue to put that motivation point in front of your reps when you are coaching?

Niki Phillips: You have to get very clear on what their individual motivation is. I think the biggest mistake that we can make as leaders is assume that everybody has the same motivation. So some of your reps are going to want to move into a leadership coaching roles. Some of them are just going to want to maybe move up market, work bigger deals, and go into an enterprise role. Some of them might want to go into client management and account management. So get very clear on what their motivation, what their career aspirations are, and then coach to that. And I'll give you an example. So I've got a rep who wants to move into an enterprise role. So I know that kind of my north star with coaching with them, I have to focus on value- based conversations, strategic conversations. And if I see short discovery calls, we're not probing for power, all of that will help frame my coaching conversations as we're working to level up for an enterprise role. And I think lastly, it's so important to coach with data. We all know that. But you have to take a step back from the dashboard. As leaders, if we get just sucked in to dashboards and reports, especially in our new world, where we're working remotely and that's all that we're constantly talking about, it will actually suck the life out of your reps and negatively impact your coaching efforts. So I think reps need to feel like you care about their development as a person. And it's really hard to do if you're pulling up CRM reports in every single 101.

Sadie McGraw: I could not agree more. And I think with how fast paced, like I shared the just another manic Monday, of all of the things that we as leaders have to do on a daily basis, and back- to- back meetings, all of these things, it's so easy to just let that slip to the side, the simple, how- are- you conversation and how are we doing tracking towards these goals that you have to buy a condo or whatever it may be? So, Nick, I've got one last question for you, and then we'll head into a little wrap up. But I must ask, we've all heard the stories. Rep dials local pizza place and clicks through automated directory to hit talk time. AE too busy for team meeting yet first in, last out at happy hour. How do you detect ideally, before these mishaps, when rep motivation is starting to lower and then what do you do to address it?

Nick Christolos: Well, Sadie, I think you're crazy to think that rep's juice activity metrics. That's never happened before. Ever.

Sadie McGraw: Never. Nope. Never heard of it. Never done it myself, I swear. Never.

Nick Christolos: No, but on a more serious note, I think that a lot of this comes back on the manager, in my opinion. And I'm not saying that managers cause for burnout, but I think that they can actually help with it. And of course, you can look at reports to check activity levels and go into Gong or Salesforce and read the quality of the emails. But reps are people just like you. And I firmly believe that you have to have the walls low enough with your reps to be able to have these types of conversations so that they will bring this information to you. If you don't have a good relationship with your rep, there's no chance they're going to give you a call and say," Hey, Nick, I don't feel well. And I'm tired. And I can't do any of this," because that's not a productive conversation if you don't have the relationship. So a book that I really recommend on this topic is The Five Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace. And it really changed my outlook on, how do people feel valued in the workplace? And you have to have that conversation. And Niki, you had talked about the motivation behind people. And when I had first moved into a manager role, I was talking to one of my reps and I was like," Hey, look at this. You are so close to being number one in mid- market." And she was like," Nick, I don't care! That doesn't motivate me." And I was completely dumbfounded. And I really paused, for like five seconds, and I was like," What do you mean?" And it ended up being such a productive conversation about what actually motivated her. So I highly recommend what Niki was talking about. Find that motivation, because a lot of times burnout is just caused simply by people not feeling motivated in the workplace.

Sadie McGraw: It's so true. It would be like us trying to sell a deal without doing discovery. We have to do discovery on our people to figure what exactly they're driving towards so that we can tie back, you all said this, but tie it back every single day to what that end goal is. So beautifully said, all of you. I cannot thank you all enough for all of the incredible coaching advice that you shared today. So to wrap us up, got a couple thoughts, but first I would like to hear from each of you in one sentence, what is one thing that you learned from another panelist today that you are going to put into action? So, Niki, do you mind kicking us off?

Niki Phillips: Yeah, I wrote down Mona's one topic, one week focus. So I love that, just getting very narrow with one focus and perfecting that.

Sadie McGraw: Amen. Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity. Mona, how about you?

Mona Sheth: Nick mentioned making time for the things that are important right then and there. And that really resonated with me. So just wanting to make sure I carve out that time for my people.

Sadie McGraw: Amazing. Nick?

Nick Christolos: Niki had talked about using data to back up what you recommend. And I think that oftentimes I give too much gut calls and I need to bring in a little bit more data to be able to back up my rationale behind things.

Sadie McGraw: I love it. For all of you out there, I hope that each of you are taking away a learning, just like us, that you can implement immediately to be a better coach. So as a next step, I would love you all to connect with me on LinkedIn and message me your one takeaway from today that you are going to implement with your team. We all shared stories when we started this conversation today about the most impactful coaches in our lives. Now, I'm sure all of you had someone come to mind and first, go let them know, talk about recognition, what a moment of celebration for them to hear from you. But two, our opportunity to take advantage of everything that we learned today. And my hope is that if we can put these tactics in place and leverage individualized, data- driven, motivational coaching, that we will actually be the coaches that our reps are talking about five years from now.

Devin Reed: Did you like today's episode? Subscribe now so next week's episode will be waiting for you on Monday.

Sheena Badani: And if you really liked the podcast, please leave a review. Five- star reviews go a long way to help get the word out there.

Devin Reed: And if you're not ready to give a five, check out another episode and see if we've won you over by then.


Want to know how Hootsuite, Indeed, and Drift successfully coach their sales teams at scale? Sadie McGraw, Manager of Commercial Sales at Gong, knows that sometimes even coaches need coaching. In this Celebrate replay, Sadie moderates a discussion with this highly-experienced panel of sales leaders:

  • Niki Phillips, Director of Mid-Market at Hootsuite
  • Nick Christolos, Senior Mid-Market Sales Manager at Drift
  • Mona Sheth, Director of Learning and Development at Indeed

They teach us how to scale individualized, data-driven motivational coaching and cover both the challenges (and solutions) for experiencing success in coaching sales skills, deal execution, and motivation. If you’re a sales leader looking to level up your team in 2022, hit play now.

Today's Host

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Danny Wasserman

|GTM Enablement

Today's Guests

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Nick Christolos

|Sales Leader at Drift
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Niki Phillips

|Director, Mid-Market at Hootsuite
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Mona Sheth

|Director of Learning & Development, Leadership & About Indeed