How To Run An Effective Sales Meeting In 20 Minutes

Whether you hold them weekly or more often, sales meetings are crucial to accomplishing your goals. These meetings are a chance to get your sales reps together and review issues and opportunities. Effective sales meetings also allow you to motivate your people and help them develop useful skills.

However, it's not enough to simply schedule a meeting for the sake of having a meeting. You must focus on making your meeting effective.

According to Alex Berman, founder of Experiment 27, all you need is 20 minutes. In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share Berman's tips for running an effective sales meeting in 20 minutes or less.

Set an objective. Setting a purpose helps keep sales meetings short and to the point. You are asking your team members for their time, and you need to respect and acknowledge that by keeping the meeting relatively short. Berman says the purpose of your sales meeting could be any of the following:

  • Getting everyone up to speed.
  • Reviewing project plans.
  • Setting and monitoring KPIs.
  • Resolving issues and tackling challenges.

Ideally, he says a sales meeting would have a single goal. But as long as you're tackling less than three objectives, you can still have an effective meeting.

Share the agenda. Berman says that when your attendees know what your meeting is about, they are more likely to attend and will be prepared to engage in meaningful discussion. Provide an agenda in the calendar invite for a meeting. This gives your reps time to do their homework, so they'll come with ideas and relevant questions. Your meetings should follow a consistent agenda with updated information every week for maximum efficiency.

Create meeting norms and establish expectations. For maximum productivity, your team should have a set of agreed-upon meeting norms and expectations that everyone abides by, according to Berman. Your meeting norms should outline the roles and responsibilities of everyone in attendance and should minimize the chaos that large teams can be especially susceptible to. Consider these meeting norms and expectations:

  • Sales team meetings will start and end on time.
  • All team members are expected to come prepared to discuss meeting agenda topics.
  • Team members are to stay on track.
  • We will engage in one conversation at a time.

Facilitate the conversation to keep things on track. We've all attended meetings where the agenda isn't followed, and the main objective of the meeting isn't addressed. That's why Berman recommends that a facilitator oversees your meeting to keep everyone on task and discussing the agenda items at hand. He says you can also implement a "parking lot" where someone from the team writes down important topics for the team to follow up on at a later date.

Have reps provide relevant data before the meeting. Does your agenda include information that needs to be prepared or presented by sales reps? If so, make sure you have a process in place for how you can gather this information beforehand. This can often include having a standard deck that you share with reps asking them to update their information the day before the meeting.

Share action items and next steps. Berman asserts that a sales meeting should always end with a plan for action. If it doesn't, it's not truly productive.

When done properly, sales meetings can be extremely valuable to you and your team. The good news is that you don't have to carve out hours in your day to reap the benefits of a productive pow-wow. All you need is 20 minutes. Maximize your sales meetings—and your time—by following the guidance above.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Alex Berman is founder of Experiment 27, which helps digital agencies with lead generation.

filed under February 2020
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