The economic ecosystem is getting more and more competitive – gone are the days when one advertisement or a sales call could convince people to open their wallets. Digital marketplaces and the Internet have made things super tough for traditional sales teams; giving rise to a new type of customer who is extremely knowledgeable and well-researched – they already know what they want and turn to friends and people they know and trust (like influencers) to pick their products or services.
While the B2C market must emphasise customer engagement as a sales methodology, the B2B sales processes still work largely on the traditional sales model of prospecting, convincing, and closing a deal. In this scenario, a strong sales team can greatly influence people’s decision-making. Hence, enhancing your team’s sales skills can have a direct result in your business’s profitability.
Why Do You Need To Offer Sales Training To Your Employees?
Naturally, when you hire someone for a sales job, you consider their past experience and personality during the interview. But this doesn’t mean they will be able to sell to YOUR TARGET COMPANY or will get a deep understanding of YOUR INDUSTRY overnight. Their past experience might not translate to your job profile on day one.
To make sure your sales team has the product/service or brand knowledge to represent your company convincingly to prospective clients, it is best to equip them with in-house training. This could be product knowledge, pricing, or a presentation as well as information on current clients, sales scenarios, and questions that generally come up during the sales process.
A sales team is made up of people with different levels of skills – while one person might be great at negotiating and closing, another might be better at making presentations and pitching to new clients. Sales training is a good way to ensure everyone gets the chance to enhance their skills and learn new ones.
What Does Sales Training Teach?
Here are some selling skills and tools that can help salespersons reinforce customer interactions and surpass their sales goals.
By far, the biggest and most important skill needed to succeed in the sales ecosystem is communication. A sales training programme concentrates on providing holistic communication skill enhancement, this includes –
Conversation – whether you are talking on the phone or speaking to a client face-to-face, communication skills can make or break your deal. From the introduction to sentence formation to listening actively to nonverbal communication – a conversation has many parts that must come together at the speed of thought to be convincing.
Sales training tackles many of the Dos and Don’ts of usual sales scenarios and offers tips on how to improve verbal and nonverbal communication.
Business writing – apart from conversation, a salesperson also engages a lot through email and sometimes through phone text messages. Sales training usually covers the writing communication style, as well.
Presentations and pitching – no business meeting is complete without a presentation! In fact, they are usually the initial, go-to document for all sales pitching sessions and are widely circulated via email as well. Sales training also teaches the art of building a logical and good-looking presentation AND teaches salespersons how to present it confidently and clearly.
Negotiation – not every sales situation requires a negotiation, but there are many that require some sort of compromise to close the deal. Most sales training programmes spend a fair bit of time on teaching participants how to communicate in a way that avoids conflict and ensure both parties feel they have got a fair deal.
Understanding and Managing the Sales Process
Like everything else in the business world, sales also follows a process. It might seem like a lot of is based on personal rapport, but in reality, salespersons must adhere to a template or process to keep their sales effort moving in the right direction.
Sales training acquaints participants with the various stages of a sales process in relation to their organisational product, target, or goal.
For example – the usual 7 stage sales process includes research, prospecting, needs assessment, pitching, objection handling, closing the deal, and follow-up. A salesperson can learn best practices, new technology, and methodology from tailored sales training that might not be a part of his/her previous experience.
Developing the Sales Mindset
Salespersons hear NO a lot! They also regularly live in high-pressure work situations where meeting targets are put on a pedestal. Not everyone can function effectively in such an intense environment.
A vital part of sales training is also helping participants develop a mindset that gives them stability in the long run.
Your sales team is the final step of the entire sales process – they not only close the deal but also represent your company to potential clients. As competition heats up, their role becomes even more critical; for an organisation, apart from hiring the best talent, the only way to meet growing sales targets is to enhance the skills of the existing team. Because no matter how evolved a person’s communication skills are; there is always room for improvement.