The Difference Between Good and Bad Sales Coaching Questions

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Wed, Feb 16, 2011 @ 21:02 PM

coachingWhen it comes to coaching salespeople, there are both good and bad questions that sales managers can ask to get the conversation started.  Here are some examples:

Bad: How did it go?
Better: How did the call end?

Bad: How was your week?
Better: How many new opportunities did you add to the pipeline?

Bad: What have you closed?
Better: What opportunities can I help you move forward?

Bad: What do you have going on?
Better: What can I help you with?

And then there's this from the salesperson you're coaching: "I'm all set - I'm good"
Bad: Great - talk with you later!
Better: Well, that's not consistent with what the numbers if I could, what could I help you with?

The biggest difference between the bad and good questions is clarity.  Broad strokes are for painting.  Clear, concise, concrete questions are required to begin a sales coaching conversation.

By the way, I'll be conducting sessions on sales coaching at EcSell Institute's Sales Management Coaching Summit on April 7 in Scottsdale Arizona, where the Science and Art come together to help you become better at coaching.  I believe there are still some seats available.


Topics: Dave Kurlan, sales management, Sales Coaching, EcSELL Institute, sales coaching summit

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Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Sales Thought Leader,  Dave Kurlan's Understanding the Sales Force Blog has earned medals for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award for nine consecutive years. This article earned a Bronze Medal for Top Sales Blog post in 2016, this one earned a Silver medal for 2017, and this article earned Silver for 2018. Read more about Dave

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