5 Crucial Tasks of Sales Leadership with Younger Teams

group of young reps to illustrate sales leadership with younger teams
August 29th, 2023 0 Comments

As an experienced team leader, you already have an edge when it comes to providing the best sales leadership with younger teams!

For example, consider your trepidation and uncertainty when you first started out in the sales arena. Chances are you discovered the best way to learn and grow was to emulate the seasoned professionals.

So – when it comes to different types of sales training and leadership for younger sales teams, your own experience can go a long way towards creating an effective recruitment and retention plan.

However, it starts with sales leadership, and there are five crucial tasks you can tackle now to ensure better sales teamwork and sales improvement across the board with a young team.

Sales Leadership with Younger Teams: Crucial Tasks

1 Inspire Them By Offering a Purpose-Driven Career

One of the best ways to ensure optimal sales leadership with a younger team, and especially in the initial recruitment phase, is to share a compelling vision that they can latch onto and rally behind.

Younger sales personnel – for example, Gen Z and Millennials – have (in general) a greater focus on finding a purpose-driven career. It’s therefore important to explain how their new career will improve

  • their lives,
  • their customers’ lives, and
  • the world as a whole.

You know that your company offers a unique and distinctive product or service that fulfills a need and makes people’s lives better. So make purpose-driven sales a front-and-center component of your recruiting message.

And don’t forget to emphasize how a position as a sales representative with your company will make your younger team members’ lives more fulfilling as well. What makes your company unique in this regard? Better training? More work/life balance? Less stress?

2 Influence Your Younger Teams Via Your Leadership

Providing exceptional sales leadership with younger teams starts with influence, and this is achieved by being a natural role model.

Becoming a natural mentor begins with the softer skills – including empathy and understanding. It doesn’t matter whether your young sales team consists of Gen Z reps, Millennials, or a combination of both. What’s important is to understand that

  • they have a life outside of the workplace, and
  • being understood and appreciated will be a cornerstone of their satisfaction in any work environment.

One of the major causes of turnover of younger sales personnel is when the leader shows lack of care about team members.

So start by getting to know each of your team members on an individual basis. This lays the groundwork for better influence – because once you build trust and respect, your sales leadership with young team members will automatically be more effective.

Another sphere of influence with younger teams is to demonstrate putting the customers first (but not in an unbalanced way – see point 4 below). If they see you demonstrate customer-centricity and how it improves sales and helps meet targets, they’ll make it a top priority for themselves too.

3 Guide Younger Teams to Be Successful in Sales

Your adherence to exceptional sales strategies serves as a great first step to solid sales leadership with younger teams, but you’ll need to provide concrete direction as well, especially for new personnel who are just starting their sales careers.

Your playbook is important but here are three areas where they probably need your extra guidance:

Client interactions

Be sure to include regular sales coaching, such as role-playing different sales scenarios to help your sales team members better interact with a wider range of potential new customers and clients. Go on sales calls with them so you can show them what to do, not just tell them.


Point out resources that can help them generate sales leads to move through the funnel, and  other resources for developing their skills in areas where they can improve such as financial models. Most young salespeople have limited knowledge, if any, about margins, ROI, cash flow, P&L statements, etc.

Career paths

Take time to have conversations about their future career paths so that they continually have something to reach for and aspire to – and want to stay with your business! Lack of a career path is one of the causes of turnover of sales personnel, especially among Gen Z and Millennials.

In addition, by guiding them and sharing your wealth of knowledge, your younger team members will gain an edge over their less experienced peers elsewhere.

4 Teach Young Teams How to Balance Goals

Let’s be honest. When you’re first starting out in a sales career, you can’t possibly know what you don’t know.

As an experienced sales professional, your strategies towards success are now “built in.” But when it comes to sales leadership with younger teams, teaching the not-so-obvious aspects of smart selling techniques is key.

As an example, at 360 Consulting, we talk to inexperienced sales representatives about being the bridge between their company and their potential new prospects, to create a balanced approach that meets the goals of both sides.

New sales personnel, especially younger team members, can be focused too much on the company or the client – either demanding the company jump through hoops to satisfy a client, or forcing a potential client to meet an imagined and rigorous expectation of a company’s perfect customer.

Finding this balance is a skill that doesn’t always come naturally. So instruction on how to navigate this tightrope will be an ability that serves your young sales team members well for years.

5 Be Honest and Expect Accountability From Young Teams

When you’re the sales leader of a younger team, it’s important to set down concrete guidelines about what you expect. Different generations have different understanding of expectations!

This may be their first real foray into a career, as opposed to a casual or summertime job. Don’t be afraid to be honest about their performance and provide ample feedback.

However, be sure that all feedback is balanced, and doesn’t veer towards excessive criticism or excessive praise. They need to understand

  • the rewards for excellent work and
  • the consequences of not meeting expectations.

Honesty and balance make sense. If you constantly berate, you won’t inspire; if you overly praise, your team doesn’t bother to take their talents to the next level.

However, this idea of honesty about performance links intrinsically to the above points about teaching and guiding – and also about inspiring them at the early stage of their career to want to succeed and take responsibility for their decisions.

360 Consulting Can Help with Sales Leadership for Young Teams

At 360 Consulting, we have years of sales leadership experience between us – with both older and younger teams. We can help you with sales leadership by

  • partnering with you as outsourced leaders helping your young team thrive, or
  • offering in-person sales management training.

Schedule a consultation today and let’s talk about sales and your younger teams – who are, after all, the future of your business!

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Article Name
5 Crucial Tasks of Sales Leadership with Younger Teams
Learn how your experience can inspire, influence, guide, teach, and foster accountability when you're in sales leadership with younger teams.
Sales Leadership
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