Don’t let ‘em wallow in their sales slump

One of my favourite haunts is the Red Lion Pub just off the River Severn but to get there by foot you have to walk the water meadows. The dogs make it across in any weather, so do I, but when it’s really wet and muddy you can easily get your Wellington boots stuck in the mud and it’s a nightmare to get out of the quick-sand like texture.

Your salespeople are the same when stuck in their mud, or their sales slump. Don’t let them wallow in it. Help them to climb out safely and perform once again.

Here’s how.


Spot them when they’re in a slump. Metrics and KPIs hastened by some sort of exception report or sales dash board can help but regular communication and 1:1s with your team will soon show you they’re in a slump.

FISH for the cause

Use the FISH technique to help them figure out the problem and more importantly, the cause of their slump. FISH is to focus on the problem, identify the cause, solve it and then work out how to do it long term. Work out a plan with them and put the plan into action.


Show empathy with them, don’t sympathise but understand where they are and how to get out of it.

Guide, direct and encourage

Support them

Provide training, observation of best practice. Do lots of coaching with them, and if you’re in a call centre, do live and recorded call coaching. Do some mild counselling, if this is appropriate.


Be there with them. Make more contact but don’t micro-manage. Keep an eye.


Monitor them carefully and try to get some quick victories and reward these. Lots of quick small wins are more beneficial for motivation than waiting for a large win. Reward effort and process rather than just successes.

These steps will help your seller get out of their slump and they’ll be rewarded with continuous success. Just like me on the water meadows as I’m rewarded with a cold glass of Old Rosie Cider at the Red Lion Inn.


Is it dinner time?