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6 Reasons Accountability is Missing in a Sales Team

6 Reasons Accountability is Missing in a Sales Team

If accountability is missing with your sales team, it’s important to understand that most salespeople are fine with being accountable. However, a sales manager might see it differently, and tend to blame lack of accountability on the team. It seems the team does not hold themselves accountable or meet expectations. There are reasons for that. An accountable sales environment starts with a sales manager being accountable for their roles and responsibilities. If you want to move from where accountability is missing to bring present, see how you are doing with these six areas. 


1. What you expect of someone has not been defined and documented

Accountability can be missing if you have not clearly documented your expectations and communicated effectively. Moreover, how can you hold your team accountable if you haven’t communicated effectively? Be clear on what you expect to get the results you are looking for.

2. Expectations should be communicated in a manner that employees clearly understand

I’ve seen managers send out expectations via email, competing with hundreds of other emails. Then, at the next meeting, they may wonder why people haven’t initiated their requests. Sit down and communicate with your team what you need from them. I’ve tried to get owners to do that, but sometimes they don’t believe me. They send the emails believing it will be effective. Communicate in a way that is clearly understood, and the results will follow.

3. A monitoring system is not in place

Once your expectations are set, create a dashboard to monitor results. This will help you track results and progress for initiatives and other activities. Without a dashboard to display results against expectations, it is like playing a sport without a scoreboard. Think about how much time would be wasted with players and coaches needing to huddle to determine the score. That sounds crazy, but it happens at business all day long. We call them pipeline reviews or deal updates.

4. Consistent monitoring of key expectations is not happening

Be consistent with updating the results once your monitoring system is in place so your sales meetings and one-on-ones will be more effective. Salespeople will need to report on what they are doing without dashboards or reports. When you have a dashboard, you can have more discussions on what is working and what action is needed to move a deal forward. 

5. Lack of visibility

The salespeople and all others, depending on sales results, need to see the reports and dashboards. Visibility makes everything clear to all where things stand. Of course, if salespeople do not enter their data, the dashboard will not be accurate. This visibility creates pressure on the salespeople to be accountable for their data and results. It can create a higher accountability within the sales team.

6. Belief in the employee is lacking

If the sales manager does not believe employees can take ownership and be accountable for the results, there will be an accountability problem. Consequently, that is the number one thing that needs to be addressed. Believe your salespeople can do what you expect them to do consistently.

In conclusion, salespeople will do what you expect them to do if it’s clearly expressed, they understand it, it’s monitored, and you believe in them.

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Rene is the President of Sales Manager Now, a company that provides fractional sales management services to small and family-run businesses. He has twenty-seven years of experience in sales leadership, coaching, and consulting. He is also the author of the Part-Time Sales Management handbook and is based in Auburn, California.

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