The Charles Schwab who was the head of Bethlehem Steel in 1932 (not the one involved in investing) once challenged a consultant this way: “Show me a way to get more things done with my time. I’ll pay you any fee within reason.”
The consultant’s advice was that Schwab write down his most important tasks, number them, and then work on priority #1 until it was done.
Schwab agreed to give it a try. He focused on implementing this simple suggestion, and two months later he sent the consultant a check for $25,000. (That’s $25,000 in 1932 money, which equates today to over $350,000.) So if Charles Schwab thought so highly of this tip that he paid $350,000 for it, that’s a pretty good endorsement for us to try this same solution. Agreed?
What is priority #1 for sales managers? It has to be developing salespeople — all of them, not just the laggards. You are the only person in your company who can fill that role for your team. And it’s the priority that will contribute most to the team’s current and future performance and results.
My simple suggestion for someone who wants to become a proactive sales coach is this: Coach somebody before noon every day. When you do this, you will help to speed up the development of your sales team.
As a sales manager, you probably don’t peg yourself as a great psychologist. But now that you understand how self-serving bias can inhibit the improvement of a salesperson, I hope you can better appreciate how important it is for you to be a more proactive sales coach.
Overcoming self-serving bias on a sales team is why proactive sales coaching matters.