You and your sales team face innumerable challenges. At the end of each month, your results may leave you wondering why you didn’t acquire as many new prospects as you had projected or what happened to the number of weekly meetings you expected your sales team to hold.
Those concerns may lead you to make a critical decision to turn your challenges into opportunities. Rather than using the same knowledge and skills and expecting different results, it is time to invest in a sales training program.
Let’s look at how the right training can transform your team and your results, the qualities of an effective program and the questions you should ask when evaluating sales training providers.
What the Best Sales Training Programs Will Do for Your Business
When you are deep in the trenches meeting deadlines, managing crises and leading a team, you often don’t have the perspective you need. Even if you are in a position to discover roadblocks, you simply don’t have the bandwidth to correct them.
An outside expert perspective can help you identify the obstacles preventing success, develop solutions to overcome them and provide sales training programs tailored for your team and your business. Here are three specific outcomes you will see when you implement the right program.
Develop Sales Team Members
Your sales force is at the core of your success, and hiring the right people was the first step. However, it can’t be the last one.
Sales performance training can identify each person’s weaknesses and strengths, individualize training for them and build a powerful team and leadership pipeline.
The best sales training program is one which not only delivers training but also helps your team master motivation. When your team has the skills and the mindset, they become inspired to achieve more.
Ultimately, sales training can drive the results you need. When you select the right program, you will replace outdated processes and skills and transform the team’s entire mindset about effective sales strategies. When processes, skills, and mindset are all aligned, your team will drive results.
Qualities of Effective Sales Training Programs
Sales training outcomes can be improved when the program offers:
Accessibility of Formats
Training that offers a variety of formats gives you the flexibility to provide the right format for your team. Here are different formats to consider:
- In-person. Conducting sessions with an instructor in front of the class.
- On-demand. Course material is delivered through recorded sessions.
- Blended. Training includes live remote instruction with some on-demand materials.
The best sales training program will have options to personalize the training format with ways for your team to access content and courses anytime and from anywhere.
The most effective learning strategy is learning while doing, also referred to as experiential learning. The most successful sales training programs will use this theory as the foundation for their programs.
Being exposed to new skills is simply the first step in experiential learning. When a student also reflects on the training, thinks about it and then acts on it, those lessons become part of a mindset, not just a skill in a sales toolbox.
An effective experiential learning-based sales training program will include classroom activities followed by reflective exercises and one-on-one work with coaches.
Additional Self-guided Learning
Unfortunately, we’ve all walked out of a training classroom with a big binder in our arms and a heart full of big intentions, only to find that dusty notebook on a shelf a year later. However, a training program designed around experiential learning will offer multiple reinforcement opportunities.
In addition to materials built around the training modules, the best programs will also offer additional self-guided learning materials for even more reinforcement. These materials are often distributed through an online library of resources, activities, exercises and much more.
How To Evaluate Sales Training Programs for Your Business
Once you’ve found a sales training program that includes a variety of formats for easy accessibility, uses experiential learning and offers self-guided reinforcement materials, it is time to do your due diligence. Here are the top questions to ask:
1. What Is Your Training Methodology?
Most of the programs you find will be either training programs or coaching programs, and you will only rarely find a program that includes an accountability component.
Instead, the program you select should include all three — training, accountability and coaching.
Training should branch beyond skill improvement instruction to create a mindset of excellence for long-term behavior changes.
Accountability should incorporate “accountability to-do” activities to be done after each module to create opportunities for the student to reflect and think about what they have learned.
Coaching should be integrated into the program giving the student support, encouragement and the opportunity to give and receive feedback about the learnings.
2. How Do You Keep Your Students Engaged in the Training Process?
Although there is a place for lectures, training really shouldn’t be boring. The best sales training program will have created intentional engagement strategies so that students participate in the experiential learning experience.
Ask the program provider to list the ways they keep students engaged. You should hear activities such as group activities, music, competitive assignments, gamified activities, role-playing and more.
3. Do You Have Data To Show the Difference Your Training Makes?
A training program should have statistics and be willing to share them with you.
A net promoter score (NPS) is a good starting point, but it is more important to determine how the program improves sales performance in key areas. For example, ask:
After completing your program:
- What is the increase per student for newly acquired prospects?
- What is the increase in weekly meetings?
- What is the increase in quality client referral sources?
Evaluating programs and asking questions first will help ensure you are picking the best and most effective sales training program.
How XINNIX Sales Performance Training Can Elevate Your Performance
At XINNIX®, The Academy of Excellence, our sales performance training programs are based on experiential learning best practices combined with current and proven sales processes. Our students don’t simply learn skills, they adapt mindsets that elevate their performance.
Download our free guide today to unlock the secrets to effective sales training. You will learn more about the key roadblocks between your team and success, insight into sales best practices, how to avoid mistakes, as well as the top reasons sales training programs fail.