Shining a spotlight on the mental health of the sales team is a great way to improve overall team performance. Mentally tough revenue teams are underrated, especially during an economic downturn.
A sales team struggling with their mental health lacks inspiration, focus, and confidence. Instead of finding meaning in their job, it becomes a source of stress. And as a result, everything else suffers.
On our podcast, The First 100 Days, we spoke with Jamie Sewell, VP of growth at Dreamfuel (a mindset coaching platform for sales teams and executives), and Kevin Bailey, the company’s CEO and founder, about practical tips for supercharging the mental performance of your sales and marketing teams.
Why does mental performance in sales and marketing matter?
A 2021 survey by Sales Health Alliance revealed that over 3 in 5 salespeople struggle with their mental health — including entry-level professionals and people with at least ten years of experience.
As the frontline team, engaging with prospects, dealing with pipeline anxiety, and facing rejections all take a toll on their mental strength. It’s crucial to provide them with resources to increase their mental toughness as they wade through the pressures of the job.
Though mental performance is commonly associated with sports and athletes, its core principle — mindset affects actions — applies to sales.
Further affirming this, the survey showed that salespeople with the best mental health are 3X more likely to rate their sales performance as very good or excellent compared to those with the worst mental health.
At Dreamfuel, Kevin and Jamie think of their clients — sales teams and executives — as corporate athletes. “Most athletes are doing a physical game that requires the mind. We're doing a mental game, a hundred percent,” Kevin says.
Just as athletes invest in their mental performance to always be prepared for a game, salespeople need mental strength to consistently show up and do their best work.
4 ways to supercharge the mental performance of your sales and marketing team
So, how do you increase mental performance in sales and marketing teams?
Kevin Bailey's personal experiences and work at DreamFuel have given him a unique perspective on how to build mental toughness for sales and marketing leaders.
Here are three tips he shared for supercharging the mental performance of your sales and marketing teams.
1. Believe in your team
Whether you are in your first hundred days and still trying to build a team or you’re experimenting and have nothing specific to focus on, Kevin recommends cultivating belief.
“Everything comes down to belief. You have to believe you can do it, and visualization is a way of cultivating belief,” says Kevin. “If you don't believe you're going to do it, I mean, I think it's a really overused Henry Ford quote, "If you think you can, or you think you can't, you're right.”
He continues, “do your best and believe in each other. Do your best to believe in the mission, and look around for inspiration wherever you find it. Trust that you are doing a great job.”
This sense of belief is key in building resilience in employees. When people trust in the product they are selling and how it can make work or life easier for people, it’s easy to find a sense of meaning in what they do.
2. Work together to visualize team performance
Visualization helps you engineer your mindset towards believing in a positive outcome.
Whenever Dreamfuel works with a client, they visualize:
- The end of the quarter
- Hitting their goals
- How it will feel when they get there
- And how to make it happen
Kevin also explains that it’s an incredible tool for sales meetings. “When you go into a meeting thinking there's no question that this prospect's getting on board, you're putting off that confidence. There’s no fear, no uncertainty in you, which can sometimes be misconstrued as insecurity in your product; they get nothing but pure confidence.”
When done together as a team, visualization also helps to build trust in teams and encourage revenue alignment. “Visualizations are very powerful for our teams,” explains Jamie Sewell, VP of Growth at Dreamfuel. “There is that subliminal connection; everybody can slow down and check in and at least imagine they're all after the same thing. And I think that has a very unifying effect on teams.”
Even people who struggle with “seeing” with their mind’s eye, can use this technique. One way Kevin used to visualize outcomes is to journal ahead of a meeting, writing about it as if it had already happened.
3. Celebrate the small wins
Don’t forget to celebrate the small wins. Kevin explains that celebrating small wins releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter that drives and sustains motivation.
”So look for the little micro wins, celebrate with your team. An experiment went in the right direction. Great, let's talk about that. Let's get excited about it because that's what gives you the dopamine to do the next thing.”
In addition, celebrating small wins helps to build resilience in your sales team. A salesperson often has to hear a lot of ‘Nos’ before they get a ‘Yes’.
Celebrating wins with their team shows that leadership understands the effort it takes to meet revenue targets.
4. Support them with tools that alleviate sales stress
Finally, to improve mental performance in sales and marketing teams, support them with tools that help them succeed at work. According to SalesForce, sales reps spend ⅔ of their time on non-selling activities, reducing the chances of hitting their quota.
Following the pandemic and the current downturn in companies, there’s heightened pressure on revenue teams to generate new business and hit revenue targets. Investing in tools such as those that automate pipeline generation not only improves team morale but increases productivity.
Mental toughness and sales performance go hand-in-hand
The mental performance of your sales and marketing teams reflects how prepared they are to hit revenue targets.
When their mental strength is poor, they lack motivation and struggle to be creative in their sales activities. Developing their mental toughness helps them stay ready to hit revenue goals and keeps them motivated — even during dry spells.
Build a mentally tough team by visualizing positive outcomes, celebrating small wins, encouraging self-belief, and providing them with tools (like UserGems 😀) that alleviate sales stress.