Annual performance evaluations are an important feedback opportunity, but you really need to let your sales staff know more often when they are not up to snuff.

Four Elements of a Successful Game Plan

1. Aim - Set a target for an amount of business that a sales associate should realistically be able to generate during specified intervals.

2. Analyze - Hold follow-up meetings where the manager and theemployee can go over any shortfalls or unexpected gains.

3. Coach - Provide support or extra training the employee might need.

4. Track - Record goals and results in a control book so you can track the sales team's progress year-round.

If you wait until the annual evaluation, you've already lost profits and you're not being fair. Chances are, employees think they are meeting expectations. To get around these misunderstandings and bolster results, set up a coaching strategy that sets standards, pinpoints weaknesses and finds strengths.

Call in the experts: If you don't know how to develop a coaching strategy, or haven't invested in sales training, get some professional help. You'll be pleased with what your sales force can accomplish with proper guidance.

© Bizactions LLC.