Why Your Sales Meetings Suck

This particular Blog is primarily for sales managers and company presidents…anyone who runs a sales meeting, actually. It’s me writing this but I think I am speaking for most of my fellow salespeople when I admit this. It has to do with the sales meetings you run.

You ready?

We’re not paying attention. We look like we are. But we’re not. We are bored out of our gourd. Why?

Think about your audience. If we were built for sitting in meetings, would we even be in sales? We want to sell! You have pulled us off of the field, usually during prime selling time, to talk to us about things like, why aren’t we selling more and how come nothing gets done around here? Valuable questions, but we are ADD-ridden (Squirrel!!!) and would rather do ANYTHING but sit and listen for what seems like, and often is, hours. Here are some thoughts on how to counter (because I don’t think you will ever defeat) this issue.

  • Bullet points—Quick, relevant information that we can instantly apply. Save your lectures for the kids. We get it. The good and the bad. Say it once. We get it.
  • Praise—Scratch us behind the ear and we will thump our leg and pay attention. For a while.
  • Brevity—This takes practice but I guarantee you that you will set up future successful sales meetings if you keep it short and have a lot of unspoken thoughts
  • Interaction—We love to hear the sound of our own voice. Give us the chance.
  • Consistent agenda—Talk in outline form. Make each sales meeting about three things—the same three things each week—and we will do our best to hang in there
  • Set amount of time—Our two favorite words are “In summary.” By telling us that the meeting will last 30 minutes and then sticking to it, you are causing us to say to ourselves, “Okay, that’s not bad.”

I choose the name of the Friday Webinars that I do with the fabulous Kelly Mallozzi carefully: Short Attention Span Webinars. Keep that in mind when you are running your next sales meeting.

As a 30 year sales veteran, Bill has the perspective of a been-there, done-that sales rep in the commercial print arena. Following sales fundamentals and giving unapologetically "old school" advice, he writes and speaks in an entertaining fashion to make his points to sales people and owners who sell. "Bill Farquharson will drive your sales momentum."
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  • VP CT

    I think this post misses the point. If all the sales people are killing it, then sales meetings are a formality. Since most are not, then sales meetings should be about sharing and educated to help the reps sell smarter, more informed, and more motivated. Don’t baby your reps – they work for your company, not themselves.

  • Bill Farquharson

    Six suggestions for making sales meetings more effective and it "misses the point"? Hello? McFly?