How To Build A Sales Team From Scratch Overnight

sales team

Table of Contents

Reading Time: 6 minutes


Hey guys,

Fri 2 July

Another day in my world of trying to build a high-performance sales team.

The chaos continues when it comes to sorting out those who can really ‘make it happen’ on the phones.

What we’re trying to do at Pearl Lemon Leads is complex.

We have multiple campaigns across multiple countries and we’re selling sophisticated products.

Furthermore, we’re asking our sales team to rotate across products on a daily basis so that we can book for clients across the board.

In general – it’s very difficult to find people that can cold call for 8 hours a day – not easy at all.

But it is possible for sure.

Right now we have Dona, EJ, Krystel, Lehi, Adam, and Adrian all ‘on the case’ as it were.

Everyone (literally everyone) is getting better on a daily basis – which is massively positive.

Here’s what I’m doing to try and get everyone to a place they need to be a quick as I can:

Daily Training Sessions To Upskill The Sales Team

Daily Training Sessions

So each day I’m working with the sales team to help ‘sharpen their sword’ as it were with being on the phone.

Being remote is definitely challenging because you don’t get the level of face-to-face learning you’d want to really accelerate the learning of the sales team.

Daily Training Sessions

However – one of the upsides of remote training is that you can record everything.

And currently, there are almost 19 hours of training for people to get through.

Assuming people ‘stop’, ‘take notes’ – that is literally a full week’s worth of training to get through (if we assume it takes 40 hours to get through it all with note-taking).

All of the team members currently involved need to go through the videos and leave time-stamps on the videos with the learning outcomes from watching the videos.

They’ve also all been asked to read a ‘sales book per month’ and present back upon it as to what they’ve learned in their own time. I’m confident these tasks will push their learning further.

Furthermore, Charisse – one of the video editing team – is at the moment literally chopping up these videos to cut out some of the dross – and building it into a more consumable format.

So the idea is (as some of these pieces of training are three hours long) – that the 29 videos become 75 videos (more or less) as they get chopped up.

I can tell the difference between someone coming in today and when Adam first came in. The change is vast, and it’s come as a consequence of us scaling.

Telling The Sales Team To Stop Selling

Sales Team To Stop Selling

It’s been an incredible ride, as whilst on one side I’m ramping up the acceleration of the development of the sales team (and it’s wonderful to see how quickly much of the team are developing) – I’m asking the ‘closing team’….to well slow down!

We’ve got more than enough deals now – and the current team we have is busy trying to deliver for our current clients.

So it’s been weird thinking back to the idea of ‘building a 6-figure sales organisation from scratch’ to now having the likes of Google, PWC, Bosch, Uber for Business and Pizza Express, In-Bev, Avalara, and other absolutely HUGE companies want to work with us

So right now they’ve put the brakes on onboarding ANY new client for lead-generation through the month of July whilst I work on upskilling the entire sales team.

Working With The Lead Generation Team

The Lead Generation Team

We’ve not been getting the level of leads that we need from the cold email and LinkedIn front either which has been frustrating.

In a way, it’s also been a good thing – as it’s caused me to review our email copy and identify areas for improvement.

Right now this training is shorter – we have done 1 hour 55 minutes of training this week:

Working With The Lead Generation Team

Already, however, I’m seeing the changes as I work with our Head of Operations (Lydia) to refine the process of building sales copy.

Lots of ‘aha’ moments at the moment as each day I go through some of the elements of her copy – overnight (she’s in the US) she updates it – and then I look at it again.

And practically every day I’m seeing it get 10% better…10% better.

I think I’m going to keep this up for another week until we’ve got 3-5 hours worth of content.

These sessions are short as it’s typically just Lydia and I – but they’re highly effective as I’m seeing her up the standard daily.

Other Operational Improvements

Other Operational Improvements

There are various other improvements happening in terms of our operations.

  1. We send reports every Friday but it’s become apparent that clients would like a mid-week update as well – so that’s started happening
  2. We’re onboarding another full-time technical lead-generation person to support our team on that front and upskilling 1 or 2 other people so if someone is away – someone else can step in
  3. Our LinkedIn messaging manager is rebuilding much of our LinkedIn and Email messaging training because all of the old stuff is a mess

My Personal Development

My Personal Development

I’m keenly aware that the altitude of the team will be determined by what I’m able to teach them.

So all my days start with me learning!

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Recently I finished reading this book (a couple days back)

Cold Calling

I’ve now moved onto reading this book:

Smart Calling

As you can see I’m 5 hours 15 minutes into it and here are my notes:

Smart Calling

27 items of note (some of them with heavy sub-sections).

And with this, I’m learning more and then going back to the team and sharing some of my thoughts with them.

This ‘activity’ is something I intend to keep up with for at least another ‘book’ before I give this ‘edge’ to my learning up.

I’m Also Cold Calling

Cold Calling

So I don’t believe in ‘not’ leading by example:

Cold Calling

So for one client of ours – I’m the one on the front lines cold calling to ‘figure it out’ so then the rest of my team have a base to work from!

This is helping my leadership and also my own personal integrity – I could never ask them to do something I’m not prepared to do myself

Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

There’s definitely chaos at the moment that’s coming from growth – but it’s forcing us to evolve – and building scalable training, in the end, will only help us grow as the new people come in.

Even during the course of writing this I’ve rearranged and renamed the video training some more.

Excited to see where we ultimately end up!