I know you’ll agree with me when I say there’s room for growth on every sales team. When you think of some of the most successful companies in the world, there are surely some reps on their sales team who are absolutely killing it and others who could use a little help. That’s where sales coaching comes in.

Sales is inherently competitive, but how do you channel that spirit into a culture where constant learning is the status quo? Before you do the work of figuring out where specific reps could use a boost, you’ll need to create a healthy coaching environment.

The Harvard Business Review conducted research and found the components that make up a highly effective environment for sales teams. They “are characterized by an ability to align (gain clarity on vision, strategy, and shared employee behaviors), execute (move in the agreed-upon direction with minimal friction), and renew (continuously improve at a pace that exceeds competitors)”.

Based on this comprehensive understanding of high performing teams, here’s what you’ll need to accomplish to create a healthy coaching environment in which your sales reps will thrive:

1. Understanding of How You Determine Success: Making decisions based on data creates meritocracy, because it renders everyone equal. It doesn’t care about your reps’ gender, race, or how long they’ve been with the company. When you are determining success based on cold hard metrics, this creates transparency across your sales team. Let your team know that everyone’s performance is being measured with the same set of criteria.

2. Goal Setting: Your entire team must be clear on collective and individual-level goals in order to reach them.

3. Sales Tactics: Your team needs to be on board with how you describe your product, how to communicate with different target personas, and the right cadence for contacting prospects, among other tasks that close deals.

4. Always Be Learning: The adage “always be selling” is one the comes up often on sales teams, but it can only come true when coaching is ongoing. A few days or weeks of training are standard at the beginning of a rep’s tenure with your company. However, you need to take it further. Coaching goes beyond training in that it is customizable. Once your reps have been on your team for a while, you have a much better understanding of how they work and how they handle certain situations. Set the expectation from day one that learning will be ongoing and personalized.

5. Put the Right Tools in Place: Targeted coaching is the final step, after you’ve successfully set up an environment in which reps and managers can thrive. There are tools available to help you determine the areas where they need a little extra guidance before quick fixes turn into real problems. People.ai is one such tool and it will help you identify what coaching is necessary, set goals, make a coaching plan, execute on it, and measure the results.

Once you have created a healthy coaching environment for your team, get started with a demo of People.ai to learn how you can boost your team’s growth and performance with AI-driven coaching.