April 29

Insights from Sales Leaders on the Virtual Effectiveness of their Team

In today's digital age, virtual interactions have become the norm, rather than the exception. To better understand the impact of this shift on sales teams, I recently conducted a survey among presales leaders to uncover their thoughts on the virtual effectiveness of their team in customer interactions, compared to in-person interactions. The insights we uncovered reveal some strategies that may improve virtual sales performance, as well as inhibit it.

Presales leaders responded to this question:

The Results:

From these responses, it's evident that while a significant portion of leaders express confidence in their teams' virtual capabilities, a substantial number harbor doubts or uncertainties.

Key Observations:

Leadership Perception: 

Leaders more distanced from the team’s day-to-day operations tended to have a more optimistic perception of their team's virtual performance.

Notably, 67% of higher-level leaders, such as Directors or VPs, expressed confidence in their teams' virtual effectiveness, contrasting with only 26% of frontline leaders who shared this sentiment, with a whopping 74% responding with “No” or “Unsure.”

Equating Virtual Effectiveness to Reduced Expectations:

Over 25% of the leaders who voted ‘Yes’ regarding the effectiveness of virtual meetings, accepted as fact the inability of virtual communications to replicate nuanced in-person interactions - like observing customer’s reactions and building relationships, indicating a much-reduced expectation for virtual effectiveness. 

Recognition of Necessity:

With the preponderance of customer interactions taking place virtually, many leaders shared that being as effective virtually as in person was a necessity. This underscores the need for necessity in virtual effectiveness, though necessity alone does not guarantee its realization.

Implications and Opportunities

While some leaders see the current level of virtual effectiveness as a pinnacle, others refuse to embrace the "this is as good as it gets," philosophy, opening their doors to unprecedented possibilities.

For instance, recent data from my work with Fortune 1000 companies on virtual presence shows an average of 75% improvement in key metrics such as virtual credibility, influence, confidence and engagement. (Case Study available upon request).

In addition, sellers were able to learn new skills that allowed them to better read and convey nuanced communications virtually. Materially, existing top performers also showed these gains, proving even your best people can better, not just average producers.

Looking Ahead at What's Possible. 

Ultimately, equating virtual effectiveness to meeting reduced expectations will not achieve the breakthrough success that is possible. As we navigate the evolving digital landscape, let's remain open to exploring new possibilities and maximizing the impact of virtual interactions on sales performance.

Together, let's seize the opportunities that lie ahead and elevate our teams to new heights of success in the virtual realm.

If you’re interested in the Case Study or information on Virtual Performance Assessments or training for your team, contact me here.


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