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You’re Doing It Wrong: Staff Meeting Vs. Sales Meeting

If your chamber membership sales and retention numbers seem to be suffering a bad case of stunted growth, the solution may be less about sales and more about management.

Often, those charged with managing the chamber’s membership reps either don’t see themselves as sales managers or they lack the training and experience to excel at this very key part of their job.

We have news for you. If you are managing sales reps, you are a sales manager. And your team needs you to embrace that role, so they can achieve their full potential.

Sale professionals need sales reinforcement on a regular basis. Very few chamber professionals that we’ve encountered are receiving that.

A good place to start to turn the tide is within your membership department's internal team meetings.

What we see all too often is that these meetings tend to be more staff meetings than sales meetings. They focus on trailing indicators. For example, how much did we produce this month, and what’s the gap between that number and our goal?

While those indicators are important to measuring progress, they are history. And they offer no opportunity to change the trajectory of your team’s performance.

A true sales meeting covers much more ground, and provides your membership team with the feedback, coaching and direction they need to actually improve their results. It does so by tracking not only trailing indicators, but also leading indicators.

Leading indicators are all the activities that lead up to your membership rep closing a sale. They include things like the number of new opportunities being added each day, the number of attempts being made each day, how far your rep is getting in the sales cycle, etc.

Tracking leading indicators allows you to observe where your team is encountering obstacles so you can help them overcome them. For example, you may discover that members of your sales team are struggling to get beyond the engagement stage with prospects. Or perhaps some are having difficulty getting past gatekeepers.

You can use what you discover from tracking the leading indicators to find opportunities to coach, motivate and teach.


Every sales meeting should be built around the question of “What can we do today to get better?”

Open the floor for your membership reps to talk about their struggles. Offer your own direction, but also encourage other reps to chime in with the techniques that have proven to be effective for them. Use the time to be proactive, not reactive.

A routine, productive sales meeting is an important element of a successful membership sales program. It’s a piece of the bigger puzzle. Defined structure and clear, consistent processes across all of your membership department’s operations are key to improving member rep performance and increasing revenue.

You won’t get there by winging it. We can help if you need us.

As always, we encourage you to practice this technique, make it your own, and let us know how it goes. Remember, we're easy to talk to. Feel free to reach out with questions about this technique or other issues.


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