Job shad­ow­ing has been crit­i­cised in recent times as it can lead to new starters only wit­ness­ing one person’s tech­nique. No mat­ter how effec­tive that top per­former is, if their approach is the oppo­site to that of a new starter, for exam­ple, then it can be demo­ti­vat­ing and stunt development.

Using job shad­ow­ing as one part of the onboard­ing and train­ing process for devel­op­ing teams, can be a real­ly effec­tive way of get­ting peo­ple up to speed, faster. 

The trick is to give the employ­ee access to a num­ber of top per­form­ers, so they can inter­pret and apply the dif­fer­ent styles and adapt it to their own approach. The goal is for them to have access to your cus­tomers as ear­ly as pos­si­ble so that they can wit­ness what works and what doesn’t.

Job shadowing for your sales team

As a sales man­ag­er, it’s impor­tant that your new starters get to see top per­form­ers in a sell­ing envi­ron­ment. It’s also cru­cial for you to see all of your sales­peo­ple in action. But get­ting out and shad­ow­ing your sales team isn’t that easy, espe­cial­ly when you have a larg­er team. We know that time con­straints and con­flict­ing pri­or­i­ties means that this doesn’t hap­pen as often as it should. Think about ways that could make see­ing your team in action, easier. 

Accor­dance VAT have been cap­tur­ing the prac­tice of their sales peo­ple for over a year. Read about how this has helped them increase rev­enue and efficiency.

Job Shadowing

Capture great practice

If you have great sales­peo­ple who are reg­u­lar­ly smash­ing their tar­gets, or some­one who is par­tic­u­lar­ly awe­some at ques­tion­ing for exam­ple, ask them to cap­ture and share their meet­ings or calls with you and the rest of the team. Not only will this boost their ego, but it will dis­play what ‘good prac­tice’  looks like in your organization.

2 ways video can enhance the shad­ow­ing process:

  1. Sales Man­agers are busy, and can’t be every­where all of the time. Video means you can observe your team with­out hav­ing to be there at par­tic­u­lar times and locations.
  2. Cre­ate a library of good prac­tice with videos and record­ed calls to give your team access to a wealth of con­tent whether they’re on the road or at their desk.

3 ways to encourage your team to share their videos

  1. Bring out their com­pet­i­tive nature — Sales­peo­ple are high­ly com­pet­i­tive, so run­ning a com­pe­ti­tion for the ‘best ele­va­tor pitch’ with­in the team is a sure-fired way of get­ting them engaged.
  2. Think of the career advances — This is an oppor­tu­ni­ty to high­light room for pro­fes­sion­al growth. Recog­nis­ing and sup­port­ing good prac­tice are the hall­marks of future managers.
  3. Work­ing togeth­er — Putting your team into groups with a shared focus, like a peer train­ing project, is a good way of mak­ing the shar­ing of prac­tice a pri­or­i­ty for everyone.

For more prac­ti­cal and help­ful advice about dri­ving your sales team for­wards: down­load your prac­ti­cal guide to devel­op­ing a high per­form­ing sales team >

Job shad­ow­ing: Increase the effec­tive­ness of your sales team
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