Best Practices for Conducting Effective 1:1 Meetings with Reps
Time is valuable, but time spent discussing action items with a rep in a 1:1 is critical. Everyone wants to get the most value out of these meetings, but how does one achieve this goal? We asked five of Chicago's top sales leaders about their best practices for conducting effective 1:1 meetings with reps. Here are their answers:
Jonathan Petrino, VP of Strategic Sales & Partnerships at Signal: Ensure you and your team come prepared, know the agenda and the outcome of any 1:1 meeting. Too often, informality can creep in, and standards slip. When this happens, you're letting yourself and your reps down by wasting an opportunity to improve.
Ryan Longfield, CRO at Gong.io: Orient the time solely around helping the rep to clearly define what a massively productive week would look like. So many 1:1s try to accomplish the world in 45 minutes or less: pipeline review for forecasting, accountability around activity/KPIs, deal strategy, inspiration for employee, career conversation and more. Having a singular objective is important for the time; then, if there are extra items that can be accomplished after the objective is achieved, great, add them on. But, only once the objective is clearly met. If you are only going to pick one thing consistently for the 1:1, what is more important than ensuring your people are aiming for the right things and performing against those right things?!
William Green, CRO at Prolifiq: 1st - Make the first 10-15 minutes free form for what's on their mind. 2nd - We document the discussion/goals/progress in Salesforce Chatter in a private 1:1 Group. 3rd - We use that as the baseline for the next discussion.
Dustin Deno, SVP of Sales at Maropost: The best 1:1s include a tight agenda and the majority of that agenda is driven by the rep. I used to say we’ll always talk about pipeline and skill development, and the balance of the time is up to them. If they are prepared with an agenda for the back half of the 1:1, everyone gets value.
Mike Renderman, VP of Sales at Smokeball: I don't always follow my own advice, but when I do the following, the 1:1 meetings usually go well. 1) Try not to reschedule or skip the 1:1. It sends a message to the rep that time with them is not important. 2) Lay out an agenda ahead of time with some specific things to discuss. 3) Change it up from time to time. Usually my 1:1s are pretty heavy on pipeline, forecast and sales strategy, but, occasionally, I'll try to focus on their ideas of what we can do better or their career progression.