3 Steps to Successful Coaching

Cara Pepper from SalesWorks showed the Sales Confidence audience how to create a framework for coaching. Let’s find out more.

In March 2022, we staged another Sales Confidence online event specifically for SDR managers. Again, we had a brilliant line-up of top-performing SDR managers sharing unique insights. We’ve put together some articles, so you can still get inspired even if you couldn’t be in the (virtual) room.


Cara Pepper

Cara is Sales Training Lead at SalesWorks – the leading RevOps as a service provider and long-time Sales Confidence partner.

Being at a forward-thinking organisation like SalesWorks, Cara knows that training can only get you so far. Coaching is far more effective when it comes to retention and driving performance. During her 7-minute talk, Cara shared her three-step framework for successful coaching.

‘Sales coaching may be the most important thing a sales leader can do to enhance the performance of their sales reps. But it’s easy to make some fundamental mistakes.’


Coaching mistakes

Often leaders can lose focus in coaching. That’s because it’s so tempting (and faster) to skip the coaching and tell your rep what you think they should do. 

Not only does this leave your reps feeling confused, but they will also end up taking this approach in their meetings with prospects. They’ll tell them what they assume their problems are and give them a standard pitch, rather than guiding them towards a solution. 

Instead, coach your reps in the same way you want them to sell. When you take the time to gain insight into their pain points and how you can help them, they’ll do the same with their prospects.

Like a great call with a prospect, the three steps to successful coaching are:

  • Plan
  • Discovery
  • Next steps

Let’s look at these in turn.


1. Plan

Before you start coaching, find out everything you can about your rep. Look for a mix of quantitative and qualitative data. As well as looking at their numbers, listen to call recordings. 

Don’t be too general with your coaching. Instead, decide on a focus point that will give you clarity and direction.

You should also get initial buy-in from your rep on the process you both are going to follow. Use this part of the coaching process to set expectations and give guidelines.


2. Discovery

At this point, you must look to uncover and understand your rep’s performance (their successes as well as developmental areas).

Ask open situational questions where they can evaluate their performance, such as:

  • What are they proud of?
  • What was their biggest win?
  • What is their biggest challenge?

Then, dig deeper to help your rep understand their behaviour.


3. Next steps

Here is where you build a vision of where you’d like to be and how to get there.

Summarise what you’ve heard before in order to clarify that you have the same perspective. This makes your rep feel listened to and builds trust. Ask if anything is unclear. Then, together, set the next steps. These must be clear, tangible goals.


Over to you

I hope Cara’s tips will help you coach your SDRs better. Now, we want to know what you think?

What are your tips for better coaching? What questions do you like to ask your reps when you’re in a coaching meeting?

Share those golden nuggets with the Sales Confidence community by leaving a comment below.