My Best Advice for Training Salespeople

March 12, 2020 was the day my daughter returned home from university and quarantine began. Now, six months later, each member of our family is tired of talking about it. At the same time, we know we must endure.

So, what have my wife and I been doing to help? We’ve been helping each member of the family adjust. We’ve been making sure each member of the family has been receiving the training they need to succeed in their new world … their new normal. It has been a challenge, but it has paid off. Each of us operates now with a higher level of focus, confidence and productivity. Just in time for school to begin again.

How about your salespeople? What have they been doing for the last six months? How are they feeling as they anticipate closing out the selling year and building their pipelines for 2021?

There is no right or wrong way to invest in sales training. Some companies view the investment as tactical (e.g. let’s throw a bunch of training options at people so they can figure out what works for them) and others view the investment as strategic (e.g. let’s translate our learning into systems that reinforce best practices across the team so everyone is pulling in the same direction).

When asked where we land, it’s hard not to recommend the strategic approach. When CEOs and sales leaders look at training strategically, expectations change. Training is transformed into tools that leverage what is learned so lessons can be permanently applied across the sales force. This means the investment in training has a longer life and more opportunities to pay you back.

One of our most popular programs today teaches sales teams, working from home, how to prospect and engage decision-makers. The program fills the front of the pipeline and impacts other areas of the business including:

  • Hiring and onboarding – Shrink the time required to know if you hired the right person.
  • Ramp-up and retention – Build a faster path for new hires to hit their goals.
  • Growing deal values – Help each team member create more high-value / high-margin deals.
  • Improving win rates – Close more deals and shrink sales cycle times.
  • Managing sales pipelines – Make revenue budgets and forecasts more accurate.
  • Expanding accounts – Make sure account teams can identify new sales opportunities.

The list and the measurable value goes on.

How long does this ‘strategic’ approach take to deliver results? If you’re training on the right things, the return should be almost immediate in terms of your teams focusconfidence and productivity. This is not about throwing shit against the wall to see what sticks! It’s about knowing what will move the needle for you right now and what your team needs to make it happen. Too often trainers miss diagnose these requirements and their training fails to deliver.

If you’d like help rethinking how you prepare your team for success as you plan for 2021, let me know. I’d be happy to arrange a call to discuss your situation.

Or, join us for our next webinar where we will show you how to use training to build a strategic operating structure for your sales team.

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