Sales training is an essential part of any successful sales enablement program. However, not all sales training initiatives are created equal. While some programs may produce short-term results, they often fail to deliver long-term success.
In this article, I share the differences between typical sales training and highly effective sales training and address the question: how can you ensure that your sales team continues to improve over time?
Short-Term Results from Typical Sales Training
Traditional sales training has failed to achieve promised results—typically at great cost—as research from a variety of sources has shown.
Sometimes the failures are evident from the start: sellers don’t engage with the content, facilitators don’t capture the attention of participants, the materials aren’t relevant to sellers’ work realities, and so on.
Other times the training may appear successful on its face, and it takes a while for the full, disappointing picture to emerge.
As an example, when charted for a consultative selling program, short-term results from typical sales training might look impressive.
Consultative Selling Program Example (Short Term)
However, what frequently happens over time is that:
- Trained sellers and coaches leave
- New hires aren't trained on the necessary skills
- Skills aren't reinforced after initial enthusiasm wanes
- Sellers aren't held accountable over time to continue to apply the skills
- Sellers don’t move forward to learn the next logical skill
Consultative Selling Program Example (Long Term)
Consequently, while the program looks successful initially, skills and results tend to fade over the next year or two.
The Alternative: Highly Effective Sales Training
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. Some organizations deliver highly effective sales training and top sellers benefit from it. In fact, 71% of Top-Performing Sellers report receiving extremely or very effective sales training.
A highly effective sales training initiative doesn’t just train the current team on a skill set and leave it at that. Rather, skills are reinforced over time. New hires are trained on necessary skills. And sellers learn the next logical skill and are held accountable for applying the skills they’ve learned.
Reinforcement and Addition of New Skills
Benefits of Investing in Highly Effective Sales Training Programs
Investing in these highly effective sales training programs results in significant benefits for a business, including:
- Equips your sales team with the necessary skills to succeed in their roles
- Increases revenue by:
- improving your team’s ability to close deals and generate new business
- increasing average size of deals
- achieving premium pricing
- Helps sellers grow and expand existing accounts
- Improves employee retention rates by providing ongoing support and development opportunities
For these reasons alone it’s clear that the ROI on a highly effective training initiative can be significant.
What It Looks Like
A highly effective sales training program is built on a three-prong scaffolding that helps drive change and results:
- Craft a change strategy that’s tailored to your organization’s way of selling
- Deliver training for modern learners that drives retention and application
- Enable long-term success with ongoing support for your sales team and a focus on results
Download our complimentary Complete Guide to Sales Training Success. It walks you through developing a sales education system that builds sales capabilities, drives results, and transforms the way your team sells.
Make the Case for Effective Sales Training
Typical sales training programs may produce short-term results initially, but they often fail to deliver long-term success. However, when you invest in a highly effective sales training program, you can ensure the sales team continues to improve and achieve better results over time.
All this means there’s a strong case to be made for taking the time now to evaluate your current sales training program and consider investing in a more effective approach to help your business succeed.
By following the right approach, you can create a highly effective sales training initiative and ensure your sales team continues to improve and achieve better results over time.