A common mistake in buddying up is that once you pair your gun with your ‘gun-to-be’ that’s all that needs to be done. In reality, it’s easy to do this the wrong way and end up demotivating the gun-to-be instead of upskilling them.

Imagine this scenario, you have a team, and they are doing okay, but one or two of your team members are consistently performing better than the others. You want to understand what and how they do it so you can upskill your new-comers or mid-level sales reps.


Step one – the mentor conversation
Have a conversation with your top sales rep to ask if they are comfortable in mentoring. If they say yes, ask them what key points they would want to teach their mentee.

Step two – the mentee conversation
Have a conversation with the mentee to understand how they feel they are performing and whether they are open to being mentored. If they say yes, ask them what are their challenges. This is also the place to give them feedback around their areas of improvement if you have any.

Step three – bring the two together
Introduce the two. You don’t need to be involved in that meeting but ensure that you book a follow-up session with the pair. If you do not book in a meeting with the pair and specify a point in time for them to share their progress, you won’t get the best results.

Pro-tip: When you buddy up two people, make sure that the individual with the more prominent personality doesn’t get more airtime than the person that is trying to develop. For example, if you are going to meet a client, make sure that the individual with the bigger personality doesn’t go as they might dominate the conversation. The mentor should prepare their mentee before a meeting and give them all the tools they need to be successful. The last thing you want is doubling up on work and for the individual with the bigger personality to steal the scene.

You might be surprised to know that fast-tracking productivity in your sales pipeline comes down to how you work within your team rather than adopting new methodologies. It’s about changing ways of working. There are many small best practices that if you stack them on top of each other, over time you have improved the calibre of your sales team. It is not something that will happen overnight, but rather over a period of time.

I hope this has given you some ideas which you put into practice. Afterwards, have the pair share their experience working together with the rest of the team.

We learn best from people around us, our team, our family, our friends, our social networks. Sharing our learning is the best method to motivate others to give it a go and try something new.