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Avoid these 7 Most Common Sales Meeting Mistakes

The vast majority of sales meetings are actually demotivating rather than focusing and improving your salespeople’s efforts for the week.

The vast majority of sales meetings are actually demotivating rather than focusing and improving your salespeople’s efforts for the week. That’s our thesis and something we’re now researching at SalesITV.

If you’re a manager running poor meetings, don’t be surprised if you’re salespeople are running low quality client meetings. Now is a good time to take responsibility for making the success of sales meetings a priority.

Over the past 20 years in my career, I’ve witnessed many sales meetings across 28 different countries and here are the most common 7 sales meeting mistakes. A good place to start seeing more success in your meetings is trying to avoid these:

Mistake #1: Losing Sight of Purpose

What is the purpose of a sales meeting? Here’s the test – If your sales meeting isn’t creating more sales then it’s not a sales meeting. Make sure the content you cover and the conversations you have are focused on improving the quality of customer interactions and the quantity of sales during the week. Avoid using your sales meeting as a convenient time to share information.

Monday morning is prime time for motivating and focusing action, not slowing your people down with administration.

Mistake #2: Starting Late

When you start a sales meeting late, you send your sales team a message that you either don’t value their time or that punctuality is not important. This significantly impacts the way your people approach client meetings throughout the week.

Remember, if it’s worth a meeting, it’s worth starting on time.

Mistake #3: Being Unprepared

If your salespeople are not prepared for your sales meeting, their behaviour is a reflection of the way they feel you approach the sales meeting. If you want to run a great sales meeting, you’ve got to prepare for it.  The best time to do this is on Friday afternoon before you leave the office rather than rushing through it on your way to work on Monday morning.

Think about the last sales meeting you ran. Were you genuinely prepared to run a meeting that improved behaviours, customer experience and sales?

Mistake #4: Allowing Absenteeism

Very few clients will ask for a meeting on Monday morning that they wouldn’t prefer on a Friday afternoon. Don’t let your salespeople make excuses for not attending the sales meeting. This destroys the credibility of the meeting. At the same time, don’t let the people in the meeting be mentally absent – everyone should participate and discuss best practice and selling strategies.

How “present” are your salespeople in your sales meetings?

Mistake #5: Wasting Salespeople’s Time

My pet hate in sales meetings is a circular share of “what’s in the diary”. I’m a huge fan of collaboration but unless you’re digging in to individual opportunities and sharing ideas on how to make a client meeting more effective; then the value for other salespeople knowing about it is very limited. If it can be shared on a spreadsheet or email – it probably doesn’t belong in the sales meeting.

Ask yourself: Is what is being discussed valuable for the majority of the people attending?

Mistake #6: Lack of Variety

If you ate your favourite meal every day for a month, you’re likely to become bored with it. Similarly, if run the same sales meeting every week don’t be surprised if both you and your salespeople start to go through the motions. If you ask the same questions every week your salespeople will just get better at making up answers you’d like to hear. A structure and operating rhythm are important but remember that people need variety so change up the meeting format a little each time.

How much of your sales meeting is just going through the motions?

Mistake #7: Failing to Display Intensity and Focus

A sales team’s intensity and focus is a reflection of their sales leader’s intensity and focus. So, you need to make sure that you are in the right emotional state to run a sales meeting. Bring you’re “A game” for meeting with you most important client – your sales team.

If your people emotionally approached customer meetings the way you approach your sales meeting how successful would they be?

Stop Making Mistakes – Start Running Great Sales Meetings!

At SalesITV, we’re waging war on boring and demotivating sales meetings.

Too many companies are destroying productivity by filling their salespeople’s diaries with meetings that don’t contribute to increased sales. So, at the very least, avoid these 7 common sales meeting mistakes and make sure your sales meeting is the most important meeting this week.

To learn how Salesforce helps supercharge sales performance, view demo:

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Dean Mannix

Dean Mannix is the CEO and co-founder of SalesITV   Australia’s leading sales performance system that delivers tools for better sales coaching, innovative sales training and sustainable sales results. Dean is an international authority in performance management with consulting experience in 25+ countries over 20 years. Connect with him on LinkedIn. 

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