It happens all the time – engineers, technicians, developers, and marketers are sent to the tradeshow to set up the booth, product and technology. They are the brains behind making the booth come together and hum with excitement.

Since the money has already been spent to send them to the show, it makes sense to have them just stay and work the booth during showtime too, right? Well, it depends.

A successful show starts with the flawless execution of an eye-catching booth where the product, machinery, technology, demos, etc. are all functioning without a hitch. But come show time, who in your driven, prepared team is ready to talk to clients? Who in the crew will go out of their way to encourage people to enter the booth and talk?

The ideal team to work a booth is your sales team. They have spent countless hours in training, prospecting, meeting with clients, and closing sales. This is where they thrive – in face-to-face situations where they can shake a client’s hand and make a lasting impression. However, exhibiting can be expensive and often budget constraints prevent the full sales team from attending a show. The budget is split between sales, marketing and the tech group.  All groups that are critical to a successful show.

So, what is the answer?

Make the time to educate, train and prepare non-salespeople how to work a show. Often the engineers and tech team know more about the actual product than sales so they can be a huge asset. Equip them with a few sales tactics and you could have a dynamic team on the show floor.

Here’s how you can help your non-salespeople work the booth:


    • Know the show schedule

    • Study the flow of attendees and where to stand in the booth

    • Set goals for the show – quality or quantity

    • Assign responsibility of those working the show

    • Define and practice the lead collection process


    • Dress appropriately and make sure your name tag is visible

    • DO NOT use your phone during show hours

    • DO NOT eat during show hours

    • Make eye contact and smile


    • Role play weeks before the show

    • Role play right before the show opens – in your booth if possible

    • Recap at the end of every day to see what is working and what isn’t

Non-salespeople who attend a show can be a huge asset when you prepare and train them to be an extension of your sales and marketing team. Don’t take for granted their knowledge for the product or service and assume they know how to sell. They also want to be part of the success. Who knows, maybe your next best salesperson will emerge!


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Executive Coach

Deb Venable has over 25 years of experience in the tradeshow industry. As a seasoned entrepreneur and business owner, Deb understands first-hand the struggles and obstacles of growing a business and exhibiting.  A leader in sales strategy and coaching, Deb’s passion for people and progress help her work with business owners to generate significant, predictable & sustainable growth year after year.

MYB2BCOACH is designed to leverage the combined knowledge of your business leadership and transform it into practical skills that become second nature to your sales team. Our proven process is built on strategy, training, accountability, and A.I. sales coaching software. Your sales team will become confident, comfortable and conversational in their prospecting and closing, leading to new clients, improved profits, increased commissions, and job satisfaction.