It’s a common challenge for sales leaders: You have a smart, well-liked salesperson on your team, but they continually struggle to meet their goals. You want them to succeed, but you’re not sure how to approach the situation.

While it may seem daunting, with the right strategy, you can help the underperforming rep reach their full potential.

Norman Behar, a managing director at the Sales Readiness Group, says there are several effective techniques that can help you manage floundering sales reps. We share his suggestions in this issue of PromoPro Daily.

Clearly outline expectations. This is the foundation for success. Every salesperson should know what you expect from them, from their behaviors to their results. Behar recommends setting specific goals and targets, such as sales quotas or revenue numbers, to provide a clear performance benchmark.

Give feedback regularly. Don’t wait for performance reviews to talk about the changes you’d like to see. Behar says timely and ongoing feedback is essential for proactively fostering improvement and addressing issues. He suggests keeping a record of each employee’s achievements, progress and areas for improvement.

Focus on performance gains. This involves recognizing and highlighting employees’ specific achievements and their positive impact on their success and the sales organization, Behar says. To do this, make sure you get specific when giving feedback and praise. You should always try to connect the salesperson’s achievements to their future success. Doing so, Behar says, can help them see the bigger picture and motivate them to aim higher.

Address performance gaps. As a leader, be proactive in identifying and addressing what could be causing a sales rep’s underperformance. Behar suggests engaging in an open and supportive discussion and hearing the salesperson’s perspective. It could be the employee needs extra coaching or training, or you might need to explore ways to inspire or re-engage the salesperson.

Take action. You don’t need to maintain the status quo, but you also don’t need to fire the underperformer. Maybe the salesperson simply needs autonomy to succeed or maybe they could benefit from a sales workshop. Explore potential solutions to help get the salesperson where they need to be.

When sales reps aren’t meeting expectations, it impacts everyone – your sales team, your organization and your clients. It’s important to work toward a solution so you can turn things around and unlock the salesperson’s true potential.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Norman Behar is a managing director at the Sales Readiness Group.