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Pressured sales staff’s mental fitness under increased stress

Mental fitness is crucial for the modern sales professional, with poor mental health costing the UK economy £117.9 billion annually due to lost productivity.

The modern sales professional faces numerous challenges in their line of work but there is no larger contributor to lost revenue and declining revenue performance than mental fitness. Research has found that mental health problems cost the UK economy a staggering £117.9 billion every year and almost three-quarters of the cost (72%) is due to lost productivity.

However, this also means that ‘mental fitness’ is the largest opportunity business leaders have in order to drive improvements in their revenue performance. Matt Webb, CEO at sales training company Mentor Group, outlines steps and strategies businesses can adopt to ensure their workforce is mentally resilient to navigate through their high-pressure working environments.

Define clear metrics to determine success

Sales is a high-pressure environment, but it can no longer be a hostile and cutthroat one where performance is constantly assessed in terms of revenue and growth. Whilst these performance indicators cannot be changed, sales leaders can set clear and concise success metrics, such as leads, targets and conversions and identify areas where improvement is required. If they are able to provide their sales teams with clear targets to aim for, they can help drive a focused and cohesive effort to keep their teams focused on their tasks to help bolster performance.

Quality leads over quantity quotas

Sales teams are often driven by demands to meet quotas. This intense pressure can have a detrimental impact on their productivity whilst also opening the door for aggressive sales tactics which can have a damaging effect on customer trust and loyalty. Rather than focusing on churning through leads in order to hit a quota, sales professionals can instead use their time more efficiently to prioritise and qualify high-value leads more effectively. Utilising qualification criteria and prospecting strategies, sales professionals will be able to focus on the leads that have the highest potential for conversion, freeing up valuable time to focus on revenue-generating activities such as client relationship management or closing deals.

Hone the mind for resilience

Mental fitness for sales teams needs to become a mindset that is adopted across every facet of an organisation. Business leaders can play a vital role in fostering this mindset through the implementation of internal and external training workshops. These training sessions will allow sales professionals to not only continuously learn to aid their professional development, but they will have access to various strategies and practices they can adopt into their mental fitness routine.

Research found a correlation between excellent mental health and achieving their revenue targets, with seven in ten sales representatives rating their mental health as good or excellent who scored their sales performance as the same. Continuous mental fitness skills and practise will allow sales professionals to enhance their mental resilience, helping to prevent burnout and enhancing their sales performance.

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