Sales Development – 5th of the 10 Kurlan Sales Management Functions

This is the 5th in my series of the Top 10 Kurlan Sales Management Functions.


Development is the ongoing development of your salespeople.  It includes – and goes beyond:

  • the strategies and tactics learned in sales training;
  • the accountability for the application of what was learned in training;
  • the coaching on how to use those strategies and tactics on real sales calls;

Four important components of development that aren’t mentioned above are:

  • raising and managing expectations;
  • helping your salespeople overcome their weaknesses;
  • the ongoing process of assuring they are stronger and more effective than last month;
  • preparing them for more responsibility and higher level role.

Expectations are tough.  Raise your own expectations high enough and you are assured to have endure stress, frustration and some failure.  Do you believe you already have high expectations but without the three symptoms I just described?  Your expectations aren’t high enough.  I just completed the first day of a two-day boot camp for a company and, almost to a person, their personal goals and expectations were too low.  Given a choice between these four goals:

  • what I’m doing now
  • what I need to do
  • what I want to do
  • what I’m capable of doing

…most of them were comfortable with “what I need to do” – two levels too low.  Or you can lower your expectations enough so that you’re happy – no stress, no worries, no problems – and along with that, no growth!  Here’s a video clip where I am discussing Expectations.


Helping your salespeople overcome their weaknesses is challenging too.  You must have already identified the weaknesses using Objective Management Group’s Suite of Sales Force Evaluations. You must be familiar with their weaknesses, how those weaknesses get in the way, and they must be overcome.  Finally, you must be able to coach and develop them in such a way that the weaknesses no longer have an affect.  One of the powerful tools you can offer them to overcome those weaknesses is a very cool CD Set called Salesmind.  It’s like development in a bottle! Have them work with the weakness that is getting in the way most often (just one at a time), twice per day, for three weeks, and watch the improvement!

Good managers promote good people.  Enough said!