Sep 072010

Every corporate sales staff should have access to a corporate sales training program. After all, how else can you ensure the ongoing development and success of your sales staff?

There are several reasons I hear for why a sales staff doesn’t need a sales training program. “The staff is mature and has already learned all they will learn.” “Experience is the best training program.” “They do not have time for one.” “There is no one who can facilitate the training.” “The sales team is too busy.” “The sales team is all over the country.”

I think each of these reasons can be refuted once the impact of a corporate training program is understood. In other words, does it justify a sales training program if a business is able to increase its overall close rate by 10%? How about if the sales reps can increase their referrals by 50%? Or if revenues can be increased by 15%?

The point is, you must have quantifiable goals in order to justify a corporate training program.

In addition, and just as importantly, in order to ensure you reach your goals, your sales training program should have customized content delivered consistently.

  • “Customized” means your training topics should relate to your company’s sales and marketing strategy and plan, and to the reps’ specific roles and responsibilities. The topics should focus on the skills and traits needed for execution and on your corporate sales processes and models.
  • Content and its facilitation should be engaging. Use written content that includes real world scenarios, exercises, role-playing, action plan development, and perhaps even video and audio recordings.
  • Consistency is a means to an end when it comes to training. Do not rely on a single session on a topic for that topic to become habit for your sales staff. You may have to train three times on a particular topic before the reps fully understand and can implement and execute.

So, set goals for corporate sales training programs that build a true business case, and then implement and execute programs that have customized content and are facilitated consistently.

Would you agree?  What’s the toughest objection you’ve heard when trying to implement a sales training program?


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