There is a good reason why effective sales training is more important than ever before. As organizations are faced with increased competition both at home and abroad, regular sales team training should always be a part of their business strategy. The more training, guidance and encouragement your sales professionals get, the more likely they are to increase productivity, fuel performance and generate bigger results. Even some of your top performers need to upgrade their skills, polish their presentation and keep up-to-date with all the latest developments in the marketplace.
If you are determined to move your organization forward and get a leg up on your competition, embrace our strategies below to achieve the desired progress.
1. Provide regular selling skills reinforcement
Evidence suggests that many sales professionals who go through intense training sessions have a tendency to feel stressed about information overload. It is crucial to ensure that they not only learn everything they need to know about prospecting, lead generation, relationship building, and other strategies, but also retain the knowledge they acquire for an extended period of time and apply their aptitudes in the real-world. That’s where sales skills reinforcement will make all the difference. By constantly reinforcing and applying the new strategies and techniques obtained in training, sales reps will be better equipped to internalize the new concepts, which will invariably lead to positive behavior change and improved performance.
According to a report published by the Aberdeen Group, companies providing post-training reinforcement outpace laggards by nearly a two-times factor. And what happens when companies fail to implement a powerful sales reinforcement program for their sales force? The positive changes brought on by initial training, may have a short-term impact. Before long, some sales reps will invariably revert to their old behaviors which may impede progress and prevent them from reaching their full potential.
To avoid this predicament, sales managers need to put a lot of thought into the post-training phase and help their sales reps strengthen their newly-acquired skills. It is critical that sales managers acquire strong coaching skills and regularly conduct sales skills reinforcement sessions. This strategy should be firmly incorporated into the company’s culture and used as a valuable tool to bolster performance.
As an alternative to in-house coaching, you may consider joining efforts with a certified trainer who can bring your sales reps up to speed, help them reinforce their skills and maximize results. Please check out Janek’s sales coaching solutions and call us today to discuss your needs.
2. Actively encourage ongoing training
Even if you have been blessed with a highly-productive, ambitious and efficient salesforce, you need to impress upon them the significance of ongoing education. Explain to them why they should never rest on their laurels or take their initial success for granted. The sales landscape continues to evolve, constantly posing new challenges for sales professionals of all levels. Those who fail to keep pace with all the latest developments in the market will start falling behind at some point. Sales reps who understand the value of regular training and invest time and effort into upgrading their skills will be better equipped to overcome challenges, beat the odds and navigate the competitive landscape with confidence.
Sales managers should persuade every member of their sales team to sit in on webinars, listen to podcasts, review case studies and subscribe to various trade publications, blogs or newsletters. In fact, your sales reps will benefit significantly from signing up for Janek’s Sales Performance Monthly, to get some of the most crucial insights about the sales process and learn how to achieve long-term sales success.
3. Engage your sales reps in safe, constructive role play scenarios
One of the best ways to reinforce the knowledge and skills obtained during training, is to develop different role play scenarios and explore real-world challenges that invariably arise throughout the sales process. From giving initial presentations to handling objections – immerse your sales team into every situation imaginable to equip them with the knowledge, expertise and confidence they need to rise above potential obstacles, overcome self-doubt, and ensure optimum performance.
Many sales professionals do not like role-playing. It can put them on the spot and force them out of their comfort zone. However, if you create a safe and constructive role-play environment, they will quickly start appreciating its value. After all, they would rather stumble with their peers or flounder in front of their manager, then make a blunder during a sales encounter. The more they work through various scenarios, the more comfortable they will be in handling them.
Bottom line: It’s important to keep in mind that sales training is not a one-time deal. It is not a single, quick-fix event that will instantly boost earnings and transform your organization. To ensure long-lasting results and a competitive advantage, you need to embrace learning and make it an integral part of your organization. The key to success is regular practice, reinforcement, repetition, and coaching, allowing you and your sales force to get the most of every training session and dramatically improve overall performance.