In today’s episode we interview Helen Fanucci, Transformational Sales Leader at Microsoft and author of the book, Love Your Team: A Survival Guide for Sales Managers in a Hybrid World. Today’s topics are focused on the leadership conversations to fully love your team, the core principles in building loving and successful remote teams, and building connections with team members as they Team Anywhere.
Noticeable Changes in the Shift to Virtual Sales
According to Helen, there are many noticeable differences in selling after the pandemic struck. Employee expectations have changed as well as expectations of buyers and customers. More decision makers are involved in each sale and transactions have moved on line. Customers realize that there are fewer in-person encounters. Ironically, with the move to more remote transactions, there is now more emphasis on making solutions more personal and human-centered.
Conversations to Fully Love Your Remote Team
Helen emphasized that employees have more choices and leaders need to find ways to support them. She recommends the following three step process which can take place within one 45-minute conversation.
- First Stage – Share information about yourself as a leader–your background, experiences, and career. This builds a personal connection from that onset.
- Second Stage – Share your management philosophy and approach. This should include clarity of goals and expected results.
- Third Stage – Explain what’s next: one-on-one conversation with each team member, bi-weekly checkpoints for 30 minutes.
Helen emphasized that it is really important to be super intentional about making a good impression, building trust, exhibiting transparency, and setting expectations.
The Core Principles for Loving Your Remote Team
Being a leader especially in a remote setting is challenging. With that being said, Helen gave a checklist of the core principles that a leader should follow to truly Love Your Team.
- Building Trust and Understanding Your Team – Trust is an earned component and it does not happen overnight. This is achieved through building connections with team members through getting to know them better, understanding them (motivations,career goals, work expectations), and helping them realize those.
- Being Transparent and Authentic – Nothing beats a leader who is true to themselves. These leaders garner respect from their team members.
- Giving Grace – Leaders should have a growth mindset. This means giving team members breathing room to make mistakes so they learn from those mistakes. In turn, it means giving team members further opportunities to demonstrate performance.
Building Connections in Remote Work Teams
Helen offers the following innovative yet reasonable ideas for building meaningful connections with remote teams.
- Virtual Games – such as, ugly sweater contest, match people with their baby pictures, match people with their ride, etc.
- Talent Shows – singing and dancing competitions done virtually.
- In-Person Events – Doing charity work with your team members.
Who is Helen Fanucci?
Helen Fanucci is the best-selling author of Love Your Team, A Survival Guide for Sales Managers in a Hybrid World. She has built her reputation and career managing teams responsible for billions of dollars of quota. As an MIT-trained engineer, she developed the Love Your Team system of management over a 25-year career on the front lines at top tech companies including Apple, Sun Microsystems, IBM, and Microsoft. Helen currently serves as a Transformational Sales Leader with Microsoft, leading a team of Cloud Solution Architects and Customer Success Managers.
- LinkedIn — https://www.linkedin.com/in/helenfanucci/
- Amazon — https://amzn.to/3j0zIjH
- Website — https://loveyourteampodcast.com/
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