Sales managers are a very special breed of people. They dream of developing a highly efficient sales team and they are driven to help each team member reach their peak performance. They invest themselves in the pursuit of increasing sales performance each and every day. Even though their passion is undeniable, they’re finding it more difficult every year to achieve their targets.
Why? That’s a great question. It’s one we asked ourselves several years ago. Our research into this problem led us to create and develop and multi-industry sales training course.
Poor results plague old fashioned sales training courses
The first thing we discovered was that sales managers and small business owners were disappointed in the poor results produced by the old school sales mentality of the former top sales trainers and their courses. The training courses rarely had lasting affects over the long term. Instead, sales managers would see a bump in sales performance for several days… and then the motivation of their sales team deflated and everything went back to normal. This pump them up and reset effect has been dubbed the leaky ball effect (if you want to use a ball that leaks, you need to pump it up regularly or it deflates). It seems that this has been happening in small business and sales training courses for years. Sales trainers would use motivation techniques to pump up a sales team, only to watch them crash when it wears off. Obviously this can be extremely frustrating for sales managers of any organization.
7 points to consider when picking your next sales training course or seminar
1. Old School sales training techniques aren’t enough
Although the fundamental skills of selling have not changed, the application has. The current sales environment is faster paced, buyers are savvier, and they have different needs. Sales professionals must have the proper training on how to adapt their skills to these new conditions.
2. Social media skills DO matter
Whether we like it or not, social media is here to stay. It is very important to understand how social media affects your industry, and what training you need to equip your sales team (from what platform of social media you choose to communicate with your clients/buyers, to how you use social media to showcase your products or sell yourself).
3. New School skills training is required
Our research has shown that the overall ability of sales people is declining. Even the most experienced sales person is struggling with these new conditions in both the market place and with the consumer. Make sure to pick from some of the better-rounded, top sales training courses and seminars – so your whole team will benefit.
4. Motivation is NOT enough
The old saying of: Motivate before you educate still applies but it’s simply not enough. This is a problem we’ve been facing over the last number of years – lots of motivational fluff but not enough substance. If you want long term results, you’ll need both!
5. Contests and other incentives have a Net Zero effect
The standard practice of using incentive programs to boost sales have a net zero effect when you consider the dip in sales after the contest is over. Boosting compensation or using incentives to push up results temporarily creates a yo-yo affect in a salesperson motivation and psychology. It’s much more effective if you help build up a salespersons’ self confidence in their accomplishments than to continually try to extrinsically motivate them.
6. Sales training without an ongoing follow-up coaching program is useless
A sales training course without a follow-up coaching program is like going to a fancy restaurant for a fantastic night on the town and having a few appetizers and then going home (hungry); it’s just silly! Real change only happens over time and you need to have a consistent program that helps sales people develop their skills and learn how to make the new skills work for them.
7. Even the best sales managers need the latest resources they can get from the sales industries experts.
Sales managers are busy managing their sales teams, handling responsibilities, and doing their best to stay current on the latest trends in sales. Having all these responsibilities can be overwhelming for even the most competent sales managers. Allowing them to leverage the expertise of specialists in the industry will amplify the results they can produce, while staying focused on the day-to- day activities that produce the results.