We already know that proper sales training is the fastest way to get your numbers up. As a manager, you get excited about the benefits and the outcome of this training. Unfortunately, not all sales reps do what they’re supposed to do and oftentimes this training doesn’t stick. Today on the Funnel we’re going to talk about four tips to help you reinforce sales training and achieve success. As always if you have any questions please schedule a free 30-minute consultation and I’ll do my best to help in any way I can.
What we’re going to cover:
Commit to the long-term
“First, you have to understand that it’s a commitment long term, you cannot look at this as a short window of time. It takes a little bit of time to get practical field experience against what you’re learning here.”
“Create some live events where you get everybody together, and you have some fun around it. Happy hour is not a bad idea after the first training class. There’s a lot of things you can do, sales contests, prizes, things where you spend time going through what you’ve learned and turn it into a game. Make it fun.”
“I would definitely get the meetings on the calendar. Really, what you should be scheduling is meetings that go through bits and pieces of the training, practical applications in the field, real-life scenarios, that you can sit and talk about and provide some advice and feedback to those in the room. That should definitely be on the calendar, and it should be indefinite.”
“Don’t just say well we’re going to do this for 3 months. Make it longer than that, to make sure that you’re getting the point across, it’s getting infused into your day to day sales life.”
“Coaching sessions should always be on the docket. You know you have weekly coaching sessions or field rides that are part of the coaching session, but you need to build in the discussion about the sales training and what you’ve learned into those sessions.”
“Everyone should share where they have succeeded and frankly where they have failed, so we can talk about what happened and how it happened. You’re not going to win everyone. Share those successes, share those failures, figure out what you could do differently, tweak it, add to it, but stay within the confines of your sales training.”
“Everybody thinks if they put their salespeople through a training class that execution is the by-product of that like it’s the natural outcome of sales training. However, most of the scenarios they’re using in sales training are fake. In the end, everybody wins, right? The truth is that execution in the field is a completely different animal.”
Lead by example
“First and foremost, managers should lead by example. Accepting nothing less than utilizing the new found sales training or the new sales training in the field, when you’re together, and when you’re not together and is the only thing you will accept. Using it when you’re with your sales rep in these coaching sessions, or when you’re attending meetings with them, prove that you’re leading by example.”
Training to tactical execution
“You’re out in the field, you see something that happened with the rep, you should be writing that down, and your next meeting with the team you need to train on that. This is what happened, this is the curveball they threw at us, this is why we answered this way, and we got to the next step.”
“Role play through that, put some exercises together based on real-world scenarios that you’ve been involved with, or your top reps have been involved with, and the outcomes associated with that, and then roleplay through that, and manage through that. Train to that field execution, not to the execution in the sales training environment where everybody wins.”
“You need your CRM to be built to handle this sales mythology that you’re using. So, you need to build the terms, the documentation, the information, into the CRM. This way, everyone is speaking the same language. You cant just do a training class and then forget about it everywhere else.”
“You definitely need content, sales training content. Let’s say it’s tactical execution, wouldn’t It be great to do a sheet on how that execution was done? So, they can look at it, review it.”
Small chunks like one-sheeter
“For example, a one-sheeter on the different parts of the methodology, so it can help them while they’re in the field. Maybe it’s a document as they go through the qualifying process, or an outline on what they should do next. Small little pieces of content, not a 300-page book.”
One bite at a time
You do it one bite at a time. Little chunks, little one-sheeters, little things that are going to help them be successful. That’s the kind of stuff that’s going to help you move them closer and closer to what you want them to do.”
What’s the point?
“You can’t just put them into training and say go do it and then not provide them with any of the tools that they need to be successful. Believe me, those little 3x5 cards, a one-sheet, or an outline, a document that explains what happened in a deal specific to the sales methodologies you’ve learned about, the execution, that kind of stuff sticks with people. It’s important to success.”
Hold the line
“Discipline is hard but you have to hold the line. The minute you start giving in is the minute that the sales reps see a break or a weakness and they head for the door, in other words, they stop doing it. They think well it’s just another thing they tried to implement but we outlasted them. Hold the line.”
Do it or face the consequences
“The consequences are going right back to where you started from before. You need to go back and look at all those times you spent money on stuff and all those things that you went through, and had people go through, how often did you succeed through that? Then ask yourself is it the company you’re doing business with or is it you?
“People come back and say this really isn’t working. Well, that’s interesting you haven’t done a darn thing you were supposed to do. You’ve listened, we’ve had the conversations, but you haven’t executed. And when people execute, they succeed.”
“People need to be held accountable to that, managers on down. So, if somebody is not doing what they’re supposed to be doing you want to provide them the support, the help, and everything they need to be successful, but you’re not going to accept just not doing it. It’s not acceptable.”
“Having 6 different sales reps do 6 different methodologies, is not healthy for any company. And if they’re good, they will make the adjustment.”
Keep Filling The Funnel
We would love to hear from you. Let us know what you think about this episode. Please feel free to reach out to us if there is a specific sales topic you would like me to cover. You can find me on Twitter at @Sheajohnr or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. And if you get a chance, please feel free to review us on iTunes.