11 Ways to Make Sales Meetings More Effective

Staff Writer

Why is it that so many sales managers feel it’s vitally important to have a one hour sales meeting in the office first thing on Monday morning? One sales manager told me it’s a way to ensure everyone is at work, while another said “it’s a great way to address team performance issues”– yep that’s the way to start the week. But the worst response of all – “because the meeting has always been held on Monday”!!

In my experience ineffective sales meetings are the biggest enthusiasm killers than any other part of the sales process. So many times I’ve observed sales people leaving the meeting completely demotivated, sometimes angry and more often than not wondering why they had to be there. A terrific way for them to go into the field and work with valued clients!!

Some Research

I recently found some research on sales meetings where salespeople were asked this question: “If your sales meetings were optional, would you attend?”

55% said “No, our sales meetings are boring and/or don’t help make more sales” 
18% weren’t sure if their sales meetings helped them to sell more or not
27% answered “Yes”

I know from personal experience it’s tough to engage your team week in, week out with an effective and motivational sales meeting; so here are some ideas to create impact, interest and ways to get the team involved.

Different is Good!

1. Ask a long term client to come along and address the team on why they use your station – what they like, what they dislike, why they see you as a partner.

2. Or, and this is a biggie. Ask a traditional non-user of your station to address the team (a prospect who has resisted all attempts to come on board). Maybe they can outline what your competitors do that you can’t (or won’t) do. 

3. Invite a senior sports coach to talk to your team (the higher profile the better) – after all coaches have to motivate a professional sports team every week!!

4. Change the venue – maybe breakfast at McDonalds or at the office of a client (another good opportunity for the client to talk to the team).

5. Hold a debate. The topic needs to be one the team can get their teeth into – “We should lower our rates” or “Online is the most effective way to advertise”. Google the rules of debate and involve as many of the team as possible.

6. Give the team a surprise pop quiz – the subject could be sales skills, industry knowledge, the competition, your station presenters / promotions. Anything to get them thinking.

7. Every now and then move the meeting time to late Friday afternoon and finish with team drinks.

8. Conduct a brainstorm session. Each team member brings a problem or challenge and the rest of the team have two or three minutes to come up with ideas. The key is quantity of ideas.

9. Ask the team where they’d like the meeting to be held for one week. What they want more of, what they want less of. Maybe brainstorm sales meeting ideas?

10. Hire a mini bus and take the team on a “magical mystery prospecting trip” – over an hour or so visit several locations where everyone identifies potential prospects (make sure there’s a coffee stop).

11. Nominate one or two of the sales team to lead and conduct the meeting (maybe one senior and one junior team member). At the end of the meeting the team provides positive feedback on their performance.

Note for Sales Managers

Many times after the sales meeting another meeting takes place. A meeting the sales manager isn’t invited to. It often happens in a nearby coffee shop where the team debrief and discuss what just happened. By implementing just a few of these ideas and creating an environment of team involvement, that’s just a little different, you can ensure this “other” meeting becomes more positive.


Stephen Pead is a media industry sales and marketing veteran of 30 years with significant experience in sales, sales management and general management. He is based in Sydney and specialises in providing training and coaching for salespeople and sales managers.

He can be contacted at [email protected]

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