How To Contribute Effectively To Your Sales Meetings

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

5 September, 2013

Meeting illustrationBe honest.

How much do you REALLY LOOK FORWARD to your sales meetings with the boss?

Chances are your immediate response ranged from ‘somewhat’ to ‘I’d rather have root-canal work done!’

Why do many sales meetings end up being a rehash of the “same-old same old”, with the end result being a mixture of ‘glad that’s over’ and ‘let’s get on with some real work now’? I think the answer can often come down to the attitude we as salespeople choose to take into the meetings. If we had the right mindset first of all, we might actually get results.

Here are some tips on contributing effectively to your sales meetings so they don’t always turn out to be a waste of time:

1. Bring some possible alternative solutions to every problem you bring up. If you’re always expecting someone else to answer your problems and challenges, you’ll always be reliant on someone else to earn your money for you. By coming up with possible solutions, you put the emphasis on looking forward rather than backwards

2. Discuss ways in which challenges you are experiencing could benefit other team members. Your challenges will never be unique and it may be that other team members are facing the same situations as you. Sharing possible answers will set a good tone for the meeting and encourage all to think of real-time solutions

3. Don’t get dragged into the minutia. Boring meetings kill creativity, so leave the mundane to another time when you can discuss it with people who can do something about it. We all hate administration and we’d rather be out there selling, so reject the discussions that drag everyone down

4. Look for ways that something CAN be done, rather than highlight the reasons why they CAN’T. We all know that positive thinking doesn’t always work and can lead us to reject reality. What we can do, though, is concentrate on what might work, rather than driving everyone into the metaphorical black hole of despair by raising all the reasons why something won’t work. Contribute from the angle that ‘there must be answer…we just haven’t found it yet!’

5. Be the kind of person that others look to for motivational and well-thought-out comments. You don’t have to take the Pollyanna approach to every situation, but you can encourage others to look for solutions

6. Make the time well-spent. Meetings are only a waste of time if the outcomes don’t match the value of the time devoted to them. Ensure your contribution is directed towards investing the time spent rather than throwing it away.

Next time you attend a meeting, do a quick calculation on how much the time spent is costing the company. For example, if six people attend for half-an-hour, and the hourly salary averages out at £15 for each attendee, then the meeting should come out with ideas worth more than the £45 you’ve all just cost the company.

By contributing effectively to your sales meetings, you encourage everyone to think about future solutions rather than current challenges, and you give yourself a great chance of getting great results.

Happy Selling!

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training | Sales Blog | Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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