Sales Leadership Greatness: 4 Part Discussion about Coaching Styles

Passive Process Pete (our second sales leader extreme)

Here’s our second sales management style.  Again, how do you relate to these tendencies?  How are you different?  What positive and negative habits appear for Passive Process Pete?  How do his biases conflict with the leadership necessary for certain salespeople or team issues.

Pete sits in his office much of a day.  He likes steady-state consistency in everything around him.  Things are placed in organized drawers.  He’s familiar the structure of a sales outfit – where it’s predictable and where it tends to the chaotic. You can pretty much count on a hands off approach to sales leadership – one that wants a steady and even flow of sales with minimum confrontation.

Pete depends on the good nature of others and wants them to make sales without making waves.  Processes are important – steps help keep things out of chaos.  They make things reliable although boring and sometimes uncreative.  Pete is often fond of saying, “One step at time, or Let’s think about the order of this, or Let’s make sure we keep everything running smooth.” Pete can put a sales process together.  He can figure out a logical order.

Being so methodical, when things require urgency, Pete doesn’t move quick enough in a fast-paced sales cycle.  He also gets lost in the process and forgets about achieving the necessary results in the time required.  Deadlines are missed and people are not challenged or encouraged according to their motivating needs.  High performers are not pushed and low performers are allowed to stay on the team – too long.

You can count on Pete to bring order to things that are topsy-turvy.  He also wants the reliability of time-tested techniques.  That’s why he makes decisions without rushing himself.  He is patient.  He is slow.  He is dependable.

At a Coach the Best™ session, Edward saw himself as a consummate “Passive Process Pete.” We heard him admit, “I just let people get away with murder before I react.  I just expect them to do their duty.  And, I’m often disappointed when they do not.”

Some salespeople do want to do their duty. Others need directional leadership and someone paying attention to them and their progress.  Top reps need someone to challenge them.  Others need praise or recognition.  And, those who cannot meet minimum standards need for Pete to promote them to customer.  If you lean in Pete’s direction with your leadership style, you can change.  It may be stressful, but you can learn to lead with greater speed and decisiveness for situations and people that require it.  Do it.  Lance.

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