A sales professional is well trained and prepared prior to engaging potential customers. An unprepared salesperson is his own worst enemy. Unfortunately, way too often they believe that they can, “Wing It” when presenting a potential customer. Integrity cannot be taken only given away. Once you compromise your integrity by misrepresenting your product/company, bending the truth to attempt to close the sale, you might as well go home.
Properly trained and prepared a salesperson can greatly affect their closing ratios which directly effects what motivates them, their income. Below are seven sales training strategies that help you better prepare for stepping on the field to win regardless of the industry that you are in. The definition of insanity is, “doing the same thing expecting different results.” It is just not going to happen. We guarantee that simply implementing 2-3 of the below techniques will change your outcomes on the field of sales.
1. Explain, Immerse, Reflect
Explain the program and expectations, train on products, process, benefits, what differentiates, and company knowledge to new sales representatives. Once that’s done, immerse them on the road. Shadow sales calls, have them listen to callbacks or have them ride along with a seasoned rep. Next, reflect — what did they learn, what did they hear? What went wrong? What went right? Be sure to have materials outlining what good looks like, and talking points for discussion.
2. Hit Training Hard From The Start
Sales hires are anxious to start selling, however, every market is different, therefore you must make sure your sales team can articulate the value, what differentiates your product from the competition, and why your product/system makes sense. A well-trained sales team can navigate the customer to realize your product value faster plus shorten the sales cycle. Training, practice presentations, product demonstrations, and role-playing must be followed by shadowing a seasoned rep for them to fully understand the sales process.
3. Go With On-The-Job Training
The best reps are resourceful and often function the best, producing results when under pressure. Nothing can take the place of on-the-job training with coaching. After a sales call/presentation discuss what worked, what didn’t work, what could have been done differently. Then role-play the situation.
4. Coaching Rather Than Training
There is a big difference between training and coaching. During training, they are learning and absorbing knowledge fed to them. During one-on-one coaching and role-playing, on the other hand, they are putting into practice the knowledge you’ve imparted to them. This is much like muscle memory in the sports arena. These sales skills will become second nature as they role play and work with coaching.
5. Be A Daily Active User
Have your reps use the products, be familiar with the ins and out of the setup and use of the product. If there only experience with the product is a once and a while mock demonstration, or simulated use they will never effectively present the product with integrity.
6. Shadow A Super Star
No training room session will ever compare to a real live sales call. Have salespeople ride along with a Super Star to observe presentations and demonstrations so that they can see how things are done correctly in a live situation and as they progress, begin to allow them to interact with the clients on a limited basis.
7. Role Play
Managing “difficult conversations” with a prospect is something that can never be taught in a sales manual or training class. Role-playing difficult situations, objections, and closing with help the rep become more confident and bold in the closing the sales and overcoming objections. Run through a role play situation then switch up and change roles. Statistics show us that it takes 7-10 tries to close a sale. Role-playing helps us to keep the ball in play.