The Benefits of Sales Training
Stating the obvious, the role any sales leader is to maximise the performance of their sales team in terms of:
- Sales figures -exceeding targets
- Sales margins- ensuring customers pay the price your solution deserves and not “selling on price”
- Accurate and predictable forecasting
- Minimising staff turnover which is extremely costly
- Working in harmony with other functions of the organization so that each sale is a good sale
There are many books written on sales leadership and it is not the intention of this article to go into forensic detail on all aspects of sales leadership. The objective here is to talk about sales training and how it can benefit you as a learning and development executive or sales manager.
In order to be effective, sales training programs need to be customised to reflect and meet the needs of the business. At Cloud 9 Solutions we have done extensive research and concluded that although logistically a little more challenging, face to face learning is the optimum way to capture all best practice within the team. Which brings us to the next point, facilitation needs to be conducted by a sales leader of sufficient experience and credibility to gain the attention and respect of the delegates.
In sales, there are never enough hours in the day: Customer quotes to get out, meetings to be had, bosses to be updated! So, why should you take your sales team off the road and” lock” them in a room for a half day session? The simple answer is it will drive your success as a sales leader by delivering on all the core goals defined above.
In the UK, there are typically over 230 working days, so a 1/2-Day course is less than 0.25% of the working year. In a recent survey by Stastistica “on the job training” such as the Cloud 9Solutions Disruptive Selling Program, was identified as most effective in the learning and development process (followed closely by coaching by line manager). Sometimes you need to recognize that you are being “too busy chopping down trees to sharpen the axe “and You need to take the time out to ensure your team is fully trained and operating in the optimal way. By taking your team away from the daily grind you enable them to free their minds and interact amongst themselves with sales training exercises creating best practice on find the right kinds of opportunities and closing those deals.
With well-structured and facilitated sales courses delegates will learn from the trainer and each other on all aspects of the process including qualification, creating change, negotiation and closing the sale at the best possible price.
As a result of increased sales and margins we, at Cloud 9 Solutions, estimate an ROI of 5-20X on your sales training investment.
The focus on qualification, ensuring your team eliminates “no hope” opportunities early in the sales process together with the whole Disruptive Selling process will greatly increase close rates and ensure your resources are focused on the right kind of sales. Better sales qualification leads to far more accurate forecasting rather than finger in the air guessing. Sales forecasting is always a challenge but it is vital that it is accurate as the whole business will be geared around your predictions of what will be required to manufacture and service. Significant improvements in sales forecasting accuracy is what we can expect.
Staff motivation is another major benefit of sales training. The sheer fact that you are investing in the team rather than “same old” meetings of technical training and account reviews (albeit these are also hugely important) always gives delegates a huge lift to morale and team spirit. Creating that interaction and dialogue, facilitated independently, will break down barriers and build a culture of cooperation and mutual assistance.
To tie this all together, sales training courses need to leave you with a simple to remember and easy to use language and methodology under which the whole sales team can operate. That means that you, as a sales leader, have a common platform and tools in which to run your team in an effective way. You will all have the same way of reporting and monitoring opportunities.
Sales is measurable, as we all know. We live or die by our weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual sales figures. So, how do you know if sales training has worked for you? Well, it’s in the sales results, but it should also be measured by some other objective tool. The Cloud 9 Solutions Disruptive Selling courses provide clear and concise reporting which can be measured over time so that you can track progress.
As long as sales training courses are structured in the right way, with the right level of facilitation and outcome measurement, it’s not a case of “can I afford to do this sales training”, it’s “can I afford not to do it”.