What are the Five Methods of Sales Training?
Training and the learning and development industry have evolved rapidly with the advent of new and improved technology.
Whilst technology based solutions are ways to train sales professionals other popular methods include :
(1) training and coaching on the spot via a Team Leader or Line Manager,
(2) in person sales training via sales training courses, workshops and seminars,
(3) internship training via an internal sales academy,
(4) virtual or remote sales training delivered live using technology such as MS Teams & Zoom,
(5) self paced online sales training
What are Sales Training Programmes
Sales training programmes are typically longer term, structured learning programmes designed to facilitate the ongoing development of the sales professionals.
They usually consist of a number of different courses and can include virtual or live courses, seminars and workshop sessions that assess sales reps skills and develop them to become a successful sales professional.
They can be certified by an external body, however, in our own experience these bodies are usually out of date in terms of their “prescribed content” and add very little value other than a printed course certificate showing proof of attendance, rather than successful completion of any meaningful learning.
Why Sales Training is Important
The great Author Robert Louis Stevenson once said “everybody lives by selling something”. We all have to sell, including those who are not in sales.
When students apply for University places they are competing with others and have to sell themselves.
When as adults we go for job interviews, we have to sell ourselves to win the position.
Sales is quite simply effective communication, and great communicators have always been sought out and heralded throughout history.
If as a Sales Representative you have the luxury of representing a desired brand then you will find the product or service to some degree sells itself.
For example, how hard can it be to sell an I phone to a prospect that walks into your store?
If like the rest of us you have to get up every morning and go and find someone to sell your products or services to and even compete against some of the large brands, then you probably need all the help you can to achieve sales success.
As sales people work remotely, more sales conversations occur online through video chats, emails and social media.
Modern and effective sales training has become more important as a result.
Sales Management Training Programmes
While sales training is important, one could easily argue that Sales Management training is more important.
The role of the modern sales manager is to lead, coach and support their sales team.
Often times sales managers will also have a sales target in addition to their management role and then balancing time becomes an issue.
Our own view is to encourage sales managers to be sales leaders, rather than a manager.
As an example, sales managers dictate that sales reps need to work from the office.
Sales Leaders create an office environment that the sales reps want to work from.
The sales manager is the individual who sets the bar in terms of sales performance.
However, without adequate sales training and sales management training the Sales Manager will simply not know what improvements need to be made or how to make them.
A great sales manager will not only ensure great sales performance from their team, they will lead the business growth of the organization.
From aligning the organizations sales strategy, to the individual activities of the sales teams, a good sales manager will be responsible for the entire sales process, the sales cycle, customer relationships and closing the major sales deals.
Effective sales management increases your bottom line and enables companies to achieve their quarterly and annual sales targets by turning average sales people into highly successful salespeople.
It also requires the best sales training programs to get the most from every sales rep.
You cannot grow a business. Grow the people and in turn, they will grow the business.
Sales Training Content that Improves Sales Performance
Success in B2B sales involves many different things and unfortunately there is no one formula that works for every sales professional in every industry.
With that said there are however, some common factors that you might consider:
Mindset – b2b sales can be a tough environment and no matter what you are selling you will inevitably face rejection and difficult times.
Long sales cycles combined with multiple decision makers ensure their are no easy or quick wins.
Planning, Patience and Persistence need to be your friends.
Activity – b2b sales is a contact sport and unless we can engage buyers early in the selling process we are always going to be playing catch up. In our own business we have found the more we take care of the top of the sales funnel, the more the bottom of the funnel takes care of itself.
Selling Skills – Some essential skills you will need to survive and have a successful sales career are: goal setting, pre call planning, making sales calls, virtual selling skills, relationship selling, questioning techniques, consultative selling, strategic account management, objection handling, controlling the sales conversation and dealing with customer concerns to name but a few.
The skill set is so wide it literally does take years to become great at selling.
Learning new sales techniques is great, however, most people struggle to retain any new sales skills unless they get to use them shortly after the sales training.
For every human being 70% of learning is by doing, and it’s therefore vital that any sales training programmes are focussed on doing, rather than class room theory.
Our own sales training programmes are based on the OKR business goal setting framework which ensures that any sales training or sales coaching we deliver is directly linked to the sales activities required to meet the sales organisations strategic goals.
What makes our Sales Training Programmes the Best?
Just like you can choose the best Sales methodology for your circumstances you can also choose the best learning methodology.
Our professional sales training programmes are based on what is called work based learning. Numerous studies show that up to 70% of learning is by doing.
What this means is that the faster we can get sales representatives using the new sales skills they have learned, then the faster the new skills are embedded.
If your sales training program is to have an impact and results, then behavioural change needs to take place.
Changing behaviours and mindset are always important components of your training program.
What makes our Sales Training Courses the Best?
SaaS Sales Training Course – our SaaS sales training is divided into role specific modules for SDRs, Account Executives and Customer Success.
Consultative Sales Course – this course has been our best seller since our inception in 2014. Revised and update with remote selling skills this course is always very popular.
Key account management sales training – if your business is typical, up to 80% of next years revenue will come from this years customers. Your customers are your competitions greatest targets.
Telephone Sales Course – the telephone is dead, long live the telephone. For sure the telephone is dead for those that do not take the time to learn professional telephone selling skills.
Sales Fundamentals – this course originally designed for onboarding new sales reps has become popular with sales professionals and experienced sales managers, who need to understand how to sell in a modern, digital world.
Sales Management Training – our unique sales management programme built around the 7 common functions that every sales department contains.
Lead Generation Training – filling the top of the funnel is nearly always the number one challenge for new clients and this course covers our omnipresent prospecting strategies.
LinkedIn Sales Course – with 720 million B2B users LinkedIn continues to be the king of social selling for every business to business provider.
Enterprise Sales Course – this course covers both the training of an Enterprise sales force and the training of sales teams who are selling to enterprise organisations.
Inbound Selling Skills
With the reduction in the number of field sales reps, Inbound Sales training programs have become more and more important as sales organizations look to maximise every revenue opportunity.
Inbound selling includes many different components some of which are common to traditional sales such as the sales process, the sales cycle, the sales pitch and delivering sales presentations.
Whilst Inside sales professionals may not have to travel, their role is equally challenging and delivering the right sales training program to sales teams in order to deliver an increase in sales performance is vital.
Our sales and service training program helps account managers, customer success managers and indeed any sales team tasked with looking after key accounts, increase cross and upselling and reduced the dreaded customer churn.
Support for Sales Managers
We view sales management as a vital part of the success of any sales training programme. To this end we support sales managers by helping them create an effective sales strategy and build a repeatable sales process and winning sales structure.
Once these foundations are in place our face to face selling supports sales people with identifying potential clients, their pain points and customer needs. Contacting key decision makers, having better sales conversations, identifying key customer buying signals.
Our training helps you to maximise sales opportunities and help win more business.
Sales Kick Offs & Conferences
In addition to providing training for sales kick offs and conferences many of our clients prefer to deliver in house training away from their normal place of business.
Our team includes experienced event planners who can support your internal team in designing and planning your sales events.
Alternately they can take on the ownership of the entire event leaving you to focus on your business as usual activities.
If you require a bespoke sales training program we can work with you to develop the right course content to support your sales teams face to face selling and sales conversations.
Experienced Sales Trainers
We have a great team of sales trainers at Klozers who bring a wide range of skills having worked across many industries.
As a team each of us still actively sells as part of our role, which ensures everything we teach is grounded in reality and not classroom theory.
On Site Sales Training Programmes
We deliver our value based sales training both In Person and as stand alone online sales training courses.
In many cases our clients choose a hybrid approach where we start new sales programs via a one day instructor led training event, which is then backed up with ongoing training and sales coaching delivered online, via our learning portal.
Our In person training can be delivered “In House” and companies can choose between hosting the training on their own premises or at an external venue such as a hotel or conference centre.
Our delivery team includes experienced project managers who can either take ownership of the entire event or work alongside your own team to design and deliver the event.
We do not provide self paced online sales training programs as in our experience sales professionals struggle to implement the new learning and change their sales behaviours without the support of both their organisation and a sales trainer or coach.
Self paced learning can be used to support the main learning topics of any course.
With the advent of lockdowns in 2019 all our sales courses have been revised and updated to include virtual selling skills.
We know from our own business how important this is and as always share our own learning and best practice with our clients.
Whilst we have predetermined sales courses, the majority of the training courses we deliver include some form of customized training.
We work sometimes for months in advance of the start of any new program to ensure the content is both relevant and impactful.
All our training programmes are designed around either the sales role of participants eg Key Account Management or specific skills such as consultative selling.
All our sales training courses consist of training modules which allows our clients to swap in and out modules that better meet their learning requirements.
OKR Bases Sales Training Programmes
OKRs (Objectives & Key Results)are a business goal setting framework that was first used by Intel and latterly adopted by many successful companies such as Samsung, Sony, Microsoft, Google and Ebay.
Whilst all of these companies use the OKR framework for the “production” side of their business few companies have though to apply the same principals to their sales organization.
Whilst many companies measure performance using KPIs these are typically measuring the health of the business or a part of the business.
OKRs work alongside KPIs to help set ambitions goals and then project manage delivery against these goals.
In our own business at Klozers we have successfully used the OKR model to drive real business growth so we love it.
We have taken the successful OKR (Objectives & Key Results) framework and combined it with our sales training and sales coaching, to create a unique sales training program that genuine delivers the behavioural change required for sales transformation, and ultimately results.
As discussed sales teams learn by doing, our process is where the magic happens.
First, we use the OKR framework to define 3-5 big ambitious sales goals – goals that would transform the company. Next, we agree what Key Results would indicate either progress towards those goals are achievement of the goal.
Then we take those Key results and work out what sales activities need to be undertaken in order to deliver the key results. We turn these activities into Sales Sprints which run for the first three weeks of every month. Throughout the sprints we provide ongoing training and sales coaching to any of the sales representatives that need support.
This way, there is a direct link between the companies overall sales strategy and the actual sales activities that every member of the team are doing. Furthermore any sales training we provide is targeted, relevant and links back to the companies sales strategy.
This is how we not only improve professional selling skills, but drive genuine improvements in sales performance which in turns delivers tangible results.
Sales Training Programmes - Reviews
From my initial enquiry, Klozers were exceptionally responsive and helpful.They listened and understood our SaaS and sales development needs clearly and worked with us to develop a comprehensive learning programme which is now starting to deliver excellent results for our business already.Throughout the programme, Klozers continued to provide added value and develop new ideas with us.I cannot recommend them highly enough and would be pleased to work with them again.”
I am the founder of Urban Yoga Lab and I took the Consultative Selling Skills & B2B Lead Generation course. The course was really amazing – it helped me to learn so many things I had no idea before. From SEO to sales strategies and from best webinars practices to adopting a consultative approach in sales, Klozers realy taught me everything. Their sales coach was amazing, giving me fantastic advice, and helping me recognize what makes our brand really unique. Big thanks to him and their entire team! If you have any second thoughts to buy their programme I gurantee you wont regret it. They are THE BEST!”
Klozers are great! All the sales ‘Training’ I have had up to meeting Iain Swanston at Klozers has been just that – ‘Training’. What Iain and Klozers offer that is transferable from class-room to board-room is to develop an understanding of the business I work in and apply proven techniques that will work but need adapting. I now refer to this as Sales Coaching, which for me is very different to training. Iain is a great Coach and I learn from every session we have together. He is also on hand by phone or email to bounce ideas around and make sure I am on the right track! Thanks Iain!”