4 Proven Methods for Building Confidence in Your Sales Teams

Methods for Building Confidence in Sales Teams

Experienced salespeople know how vital confidence can be. Confidence in your products, your brand, and your ability to find the right solution to a prospective client’s problems are all crucial parts of building trust with clients.

Infamous coach and public speaker Tony Robbins describes this concept as “immediately putting a customer at ease by talking to them with conviction and sincerity. It means bringing your purpose to every sales conversation.” But that confidence takes time to build and refine for many individual sales reps and larger sales teams.

Managers and other organizational stakeholders can foster an environment full of authentic trust and help give salespeople the tools they need for confident selling. In return, your organization will build a stronger brand, a more engaged network of customers and leads, and a productive team of sales experts.

Attitude and Relationships Are Everything in Today’s Sales Environment

Today’s sales strategies are more about building long-term relationships and trust than ever before. Consider:

Open and effective communication is so critical that practicing it is one of the top ways to boost sales performance. Rather than focusing on the hard sales tactics of yesteryear and closed-won opportunities at virtually all cost, companies are going for a more human-centric approach. Organizations now see better success by understanding a prospective customer’s perspective and pain points before finding a way to solve them through their company’s products or services. Clients want to know they’re being listened to and that an offered product or solution addresses their needs.

To foster this connection, salespeople must be confident in their ability to ask questions, get past reflexive ‘no’s in a way that doesn’t frustrate prospects and match clients with unique value propositions they care about most. Speaking with confidence, giving specifics, and helping prospects see the real value over the long term is critical. Not only does this result in a profitable sale at the start of the relationship, but it also promotes repeat sales and a longer-term business relationship.

Help Build Confidence by Providing Support and Resources (The Sales Enablement Approach)

But how can sales managers and organizations help provide confidence? Because it’s such a soft, hard-to-define skill, many employers focus on hiring sales reps who are confident at the outset and seem only to need product- and process-specific training. However, this mindset is a mistake—it limits your pool of potential sales rep candidates and doesn’t encourage growth. Confidence is not an inborn skill; your team of salespeople (and any new hires) can develop confidence through positive company culture, better morale, support, and ongoing learning opportunities.

Many organizations are fostering this approach through a sales enablement mindset. Sales enablement is about training your reps to make connections and sell products. Companies implement this by providing training and coaching, motivating improvement with certificates, and celebrating wins through events and team support. Traditionally toxic environments and a single-minded focus on closing deals is an old-fashioned way of doing business and will cost you sales in a more modern sales landscape.

Related: 7 Foundational Tips for Improving Sales Performance in 2023

4 Methods for Building Your Sales Team’s Confidence

Every team is different and will require unique approaches to boost team confidence. Even individual sales reps will require a unique blend of techniques. In psychology terms, an article from the National Library of Medicine cites three critical factors that shape confidence

  1. Feelings of well-being
  2. Acceptance of body and mind
  3. Belief in one’s abilities, skills, and experience level

Targeted efforts to address these factors can help leaders build confidence among their sales teams. These four approaches do precisely that:

1. Encourage Collaboration to Boost Comradery and Company Culture

Employees need to feel a positive connection to their workplace. Low morale, unhealthy competition, and disconnection from a company’s mission will lower feelings of well-being and confidence in the company. This, in turn, can lead to apathetic sales calls, hesitance through the sales process, and resistance to putting in more effort. 

To address well-being and create a positive workplace, leaders should make a concerted effort to boost camaraderie and create a company culture that prioritizes well-being. This can be done by:

  • Implementing controlled competition through leaderboards with a focus on wins rather than losses
  • Creating team goals that don’t penalize high-performers or lead to internal politics
  • Creating opportunities for team members to share insights, best practices, and non-work-related stories
  • Establishing a work-life balance for employees that doesn’t encourage after-hours work, overtime, or taking on extra tasks
  • Concentrating on diversity, inclusion, and equity (DEI) initiatives to support everyone in the workplace

2. Create an Environment Where Sales Reps Can Learn From Each Other

A critical element of confidence is having skills and growing your capabilities. Sales leaders can foster well-being and learning by creating a collaborative learning environment. When salespeople feel like they can ask teammates for advice, share tips and tactics they’ve learned throughout their journey, and learn without affecting interdepartmental dynamics, everyone can grow more confident. You can foster this by:

  • Minimizing direct competition powered by financial incentives
  • Creating a safe environment for admitting mistakes
  • Setting aside blocks of time for collaboration that don’t push back work

3. Celebrate Wins and Progress Toward Goals

Give your team a well-earned boost in confidence by routinely celebrating small and large wins. This can include calling out sales reps who have succeeded in a particularly tricky situation, noting progress toward revenue goals, and celebrating learning with certificates. 

One critical aspect of this approach is establishing a baseline of your team’s current skills, knowledge, and capabilities. These insights are the foundation for setting personalized growth goals. Employees can also use this information to objectively understand their current abilities, top skills, and areas for growth. This makes progress more meaningful; it also is a critical element of confidence.

Related: 5 Key Questions for Measuring Sales Enablement

4. Invest in Better Training

Sales roles require confidence, and confidence is all about expertise. In a Harvard Business Review article, sales expert Joseph Curtis explains, “Sales is less about selling and more about leading, which requires high levels of confidence, which in turn requires knowledge and experience.”

Fake-it-to-your-make-it only goes so far, and your salespeople need lots of experience selling, knowledge about the products they’re offering, and skills in managing conversations and relationships. There’s no better way to build authentic confidence than to provide for those essential building blocks. Training directly addresses that third critical factor in faith—belief in one’s abilities, skills, and experience level.

While traditional training approaches were cumbersome and subjective, today’s AI-powered training and coaching platforms make training far more versatile and actionable. Each sales rep can log into the platform when they have time or during a training time block. They can receive personalized coaching from an AI deeply familiar with their baseline capabilities, growth, and past lessons. Sales reps benefit from the one-on-one attention and customized approach that targets their needs directly.

Let’s dive deeper into how sales training can build confidence:

Train Sales Reps on Soft Skills

Modern B2C and B2B sales relationships rely on soft skills. Salespeople must be well-versed in active listening, understanding their buyers’ perspectives, being aware of emotions and values, and transforming value propositions to match clients’ needs. These skills are very teachable, but they require practice. AI coaching modules with simulations allow reps to practice granular soft skills repeatedly until they feel confident.

Create a Foundation of Knowledge

Providing personalized training and resources about company practices, workflows, and product details helps every sales rep become an expert. Not only does this increase their confidence, but it makes prospective buyers far more confident in your business. 

Prioritize Conversational IQ for Relationship Building and Resiliency

Conversational IQ is measurable and improvable. AI coaching and simulations can provide reps with the resources to train on critical aspects of conversations, such as responding to different emotions or words, knowing what to say next, and demonstrating empathy. Everyone becomes more confident knowing they can speak with authority, reduce awkward gaps, and be familiar with the twists and turns in sales conversations.

Boost Confidence — and Sales — With a Cutting-Edge AI-Powered Training Platform

The right AI-powered training tool can address all of the critical elements of confidence and become a keystone in your sales enablement approaches. At Quantified, we have built an AI-powered coaching and simulation platform that empowers reps through personalized learning courses that show objective growth and drive them to new growth areas and ways to adopt new soft skills. Contact us today to schedule a demo and see how you can use Quantified to build confidence in your sales teams.