How to Include Soft Skills in Sales Performance Coaching

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Sales Performance Coaching Needs a Soft Skills Component. Here’s Why:

Every sales rep is only able to exceed quota when they communicate well. But sales team leaders may have a difficult time assessing the whole range of skills of their representatives during sales performance coaching. Tracking essential soft skills, which are highly relevant in post-pandemic times, can be particularly challenging.

A rep who can’t communicate the value of a product or service won’t be able to sell it, no matter how innovative it may be. When sales reps connect well, they are able to build trust with prospects which results in successful sales, lasting relationships, and happy customers who recommend the company to others. 

What happens with those reps who don’t perform too well? Sometimes the problem isn’t just what they say but the way they say it. There may be subtle behaviors, visible even through a video call, which end up damaging the end result. This is where measuring and coaching on soft skills that directly impact their presence, eye contact, or physical communication can help them create powerful connections with their counterparts. 

Quantifying credibility, trustworthiness, curiosity, empathy, confidence, or likeability is now possible. In the past, managers could only capture these and other essential abilities in highly subjective and manual observations. Today, an advanced, accurate, and scalable technology can create measurable goals and sales performance coaching programs around these skills. 

3 Steps to Measure Soft Skills for Sales Performance Coaching 

According to McKinsey, “The pandemic has dramatically accelerated the need for new skills in the workforce, with social and emotional skills high in demand. The proportion of companies addressing empathy and interpersonal skills doubled in 2020.” This reality is also tangible for sales teams all over the world.

In order to improve sales performance coaching in your company, you need to add a robust soft skill component. Here’s how to do it in just three steps:

Step 1: Identify the skills your team needs to develop 

It’s crucial to know which soft skills your organization needs most. It will be easier to develop a system to find, retain, and coach salespeople on those abilities when you define the soft skills that are essential to growing your business. This will improve your existing team members as well. 

It’s about creating a customized soft skills element for your sales performance coaching programs to establish a connection between rep behavior, customer experience and performance.

Step 2: Integrate artificial intelligence (AI) into evaluations

As mentioned above, conventional methods of assessing soft skills can be subjective, highly variable, and not of much use by themselves. You can use surveys, workshops, or online courses to determine which candidates and current sales team members have the soft skills you are looking for and who could use personalized sales performance coaching sessions to improve.

In addition, you can use the best AI-powered assessment platform to make the whole process even more powerful and precise. By partnering with a trusted provider, you’re able to evaluate your sales team objectively, at scale, and more effectively than you can with a subjective assessment alone.

Behavioral analytics will help you determine if your sales team has the same soft skills and potential as the top sales representatives within your organization. Sales performance coaching can be of higher value, and more focused essential skills with the right technology.

Step 3: Create individualized skills-based sales performance coaching paths for the whole organization

An organization’s growth depends heavily on engaging and developing its employees. You can help your reps boost their growth and increase their soft skills management through data-based insights and  AI-powered coaching. You will get personalized improvement plans based on initial one-on-one evaluations if you choose the right technology. 

By including soft skill assessments in sales performance coaching, you can increase the metrics of your sales team. Now that you know the best technology will assist you, learn in the next section what to look for in the right platform.

Identifying the Best Features in a Sales Performance Coaching Platform

As you can see, your sales team’s communication abilities have a direct impact on revenue. A sales performance coaching tool that can detect, measure, and create development paths based on soft skills can help you improve your team and individual results. You will be able to easily determine their levels of reliability, influence, precision, and competence with the use of AI.

Yet, how do you go about choosing which platform to use? Let’s examine some of the must-have features so you can make the right choice.

Detailed reporting

You should ensure that your reps have access to reports as well as additional resources that can help them improve their performance and increase closing rates. Make sure the tool you are considering can measure skills and behaviors and rank them, identify strengths, provide development guidance, and let you compare your reps against each other.

A leading sales performance coaching solution can put these insights together automatically. Consider advanced reporting and analytics features such as team and individual dashboards, progress reports, field, and role-specific analytics.

Intelligent, objective conversation scoring 

With a leading tool, you can get insight into team performance and optimize their efficiency without spending time with them in person or investing hours listening to their recorded calls. Automating as much as possible will save you time. You can achieve this by having your sales platform automatically score and benchmark your sales behaviors based on successfully implemented coaching techniques and competency-based sales training. 

Resources for revenue intelligence

Integrating your sales performance coaching tool with other software should be seamless. For example, valuable integrations can include communications platforms, scheduling tools, CRMs and HCM solutions, learning management systems, and learning experience platforms.

Sales-optimized design

To improve your reps’ communication and drive their success, you need a solution that can identify and address skill gaps by providing personalized analytics, feedback, and development plans. In contrast to online courses, experiential learning enables team members to practice and improve their skills. Learn how to support your team’s training with a tool that includes behavioral assessments, role-based scenarios, videos, and transcripts.

Remember: It doesn’t matter how revolutionary a product or service is if an agent can’t convey its value to customers. Conversely, reps who communicate well and use their soft skills to their advantage maximize the chances of success in the long run. Leverage cutting-edge technology to make this possible for your whole team.

The Next Level in Sales Performance Coaching

To conclude, AI provides unprecedented insights into vast amounts of data, most of which are predictive in nature, giving sales teams a competitive edge. With Quantified’s AI-powered coaching platform, soft skills-rich sales performance coaching is possible at scale. 

The platform combines AI and behavioral science with a vast database of human-scored communications for a science-based and data-driven approach to sales coaching. Based on this data, coaches can tailor their sales performance coaching programs to align quotas with individual sales goals. 

Coaches and sales reps can use Quantified’s technology to understand better verbal and non-verbal communication to engage customers, increase trust, and create a better customer experience. If you’d like to learn more about how Quantified can help your sales reps achieve their quotas, generate better conversations, and drive better results, book a demo today.