7 Best Practices in Training for Telesales | Training Course

Training for Telesales

1. Training for Telesales

You may remember the ad campaign from Levi “When the world zigs you zag” which encouraged people to be different and draw on the rebellious spirit in them. Well in a world where there seems to be an app for everything it might be time for you to pull out the old fashioned Telephone and make some sales calls.  

Get full details on our Telephone Sales Training Course.

2. Successful Telesales Strategies

Cold Calling might be dead, however, the telephone definitely isn’t.

Many Inside Sales Professionals successfully use the telephone in conjunction with email and Social Media to “connect” first with buyers and then establish relevance to prime the call before picking up the phone.

Recently one of our clients was thrilled to have a buyer call back after we helped compile, one simple introductory email.

This call led to a meeting and 3 months down the line a £60,000 contract.

Using the telephone to generate demand is still possible, but we need to be much smarter and much more targeted, than simply working our way through a spreadsheet.

Simply smiling and dialing is not a recipe for success in the modern business world.

Why Sales Training is Important
Training for Telesales

3. Does Cold Calling Work?

  1. 69% of buyers accepted calls from salespeople in the last 12 months.
  1. 71% say they are happy to talk with salespeople when they are looking for ideas to improve business results.
  1. 60% of IT Buyers want a cold-call from salespeople first.

It may not be fashionable, and it may not be your own personal favourite, but nevertheless, it is the world’s number one Sales Tool.

The telephone has been abused, misused and the weapon of choice for some of the worst sales strategies and sales techniques, hence the words Telephone and Sales are now not always popular bed mates.

In many cases Inside Sales teams never receive formal training for telesales and more often than not they are working ad-hoc based on one persons experience.


It is not the fault of Direct Mail we get flooded with junk mail.

It is not the fault of email that people choose to send spam.

It is not the fault of Social Media that people choose to be rude, offensive and keyboard warriors.

Therefore it is not the fault of the telephone that people have made, and most of us have received, some lousy sales calls.

Training for Telesales
Telephone Sales Training

4. Definitions Training for Telesales

Before we go on it’s important to first establish some common ground on the basics of telesales training.


A Cold Call is when you telephone a complete stranger who is not expecting your call.


A warm call is when you call a complete stranger who is expecting your call because you may have emailed, or sent something in advance telling them you would call.

The success rate of Warm Calling jumps to 40% with a personal introduction to a buyer and will be anything between 3 and 40% when you send information in advance, but this is largely dependent on what you send and your value proposition.

In some industries, cold calling has an amazing conversion rate but less so in others, so like many other things the context is important.

5. Inside Sales Training

Aaron Ross’s great book Predictable Revenue will help you understand how to set up an Inside Sales team and is a great starting point, however, most of our clients quickly find there are some missing links in the translation from selling American style, to the culture and nuance of the UK.

It doesn’t help that Inside Sales is such a tough job to do and an even tougher one to manage.

Many of us have had more than one negative experience with a cold call where the caller was less than professional and this unfortunately continues, as so few people have the necessary skills to make an effective telephone call or the appetite to learn.

When we Cold Call we run the risk of damaging our brand, and this is where training and coaching have their place.

Modern technology has killed the art of voice communication. Auto-dialers, Text, Instant Messaging and Email are now the preferred form of business communication and for many picking up the phone is the last option. In our personal lives, we are also happy to text or message our family and friends rather than phone.

This is further echoed by younger generations who have moved completely away from voice communication which ironically is often the least used App on the modern telephone.

The way companies buy has changed and evolved over the last 40 years, which has forced us to change the way we communicate and sell. This has cast a question mark over the effectiveness, or lack of it from Cold Calling.

Like everything the best way to get real results from cold calling are by providing effective training for telesales which is then supported by on ongoing coaching and practice.

By practice and repetition we mean making at least 1000 calls to practice and hone your telephone selling skills. Most people, however, don’t want to make 1000 calls, especially when they are learning when each call can quickly turn into a car crash.

Now more than ever, we all seek instant gratification and when we are making cold calls, that very rarely happens.  

6. Marketing vs Telesales

Many marketers will claim that Cold Calling is not the most effective use of your Salespeople’s time and they have the statistics to prove this. Where this falls down, however, is that marketing is reactive which means we have to wait on a prospect finding a blog, a white paper or a video and then hope they respond or contact us.

Sales is a pro-active sport and if there is a C – Level buyer that fits our prospect profile why wouldn’t we call them?

Why would we wait on them finding the content that marketing created?

Marketing should be providing the 80-90% of new leads to the business, however, Cold Calling also has a place; as a high impact, tactical sales tool reserved for targeting high-value prospects.

Training for Telesales

7. Best Practice in Telesales


If you don’t prepare your call list till the day you plan to make your calls you will never make any calls. Preparation needs to be done in advance and don’t be too proud to use scripts. Everyone laughs at the scripted young servers in McDonald’s but multiply the effect of “would you like fries with that” across thousands of sales interactions every hour of every day and the additional revenue this creates is staggering.

If you are unsure what to say you need to first develop your Value Proposition and after that, you can feed this into your opening script. Please note only the opening should be scripted because when you use Consultative Selling, you will be asking questions and the prospects answers will never fit with your script.


You must keep track of all your activity such as number of calls, number of voicemails, number of times the gatekeeper blocks you, number of time you get to speak with a prospect etc. By week 2 you should know for every x calls you make, you will get one appointment or sale. This will help to motivate you when times are tough. You can download a free copy of our Sales Call Tracker sheet from the Sales Tools section which will provide the basics to get you started.


You should develop a call plan with the best times to call, the questions you will ask and the outcomes you want.

  • Cold calling is 70% more successful on a Wednesday
  • Buyers are 16% more likely to answer at 10 am
  • The best talk to listen to ration is 55% to 45% (personally I think this is too much talking)
  • Follow up emails get a 62% open rate
  • Post call emails should be a minimum of 75 and a maximum of 100 words.
Telesales Training Tips
Telesales Training Tips


Never practice on your best list of prospects, instead, take the pressure off yourself and practice on people that you have no chance of selling to. Keep your best prospect list ready till you have practiced and have developed your skills.

If you have important callbacks to make in the morning always do 2-3 warm-up calls first, to get you in the zone.

Work out in advance how you will handle sales objections so that you don’t get stuck when the prospect raises any, and they always do.


Make your calls consistently and never rush. The goal is normally to set an appointment, not a competition on who makes the most calls. You must choose quality over quantity.

Even if you are trying to sell, do not, because they will smell what we call your sales breath down the telephone and it’s hugely off-putting. Never use features and benefit statements as they remind people of 1970’s car salesmen, instead use intelligent questions to engage them and gather information.

If you are selling “appointments” there is nothing more demoralising for a Salesperson than to attend an appointment arranged by telesales only to find the prospect isn’t a prospect at all. Agree with your colleagues in advance what the prospect must say or do to qualify for an appointment.

No matter how good you are every day people will be rude and even abusive. They are only words and they will never hurt you so never make the mistake of responding to them.

Kill them with kindness, protect your brand and yourself and simply say “Next Please”.


Depending on the laws of whatever country you are reading this article in, it may be possible to record your calls. Normally recording is legal if you tell the other person and this happens all the time for inbound calls, however, it will kill your conversion ratio if you have to declare you are recording on an outbound call so only do it if it’s legal.

That said recording your calls and listening back to them is a great way to debrief a call and learn for the next one.


Repeat, In Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, he talks about the need for 10,000 hours of deliberate practice before you can become proficient at anything.

There has been a rush of studies to try and disprove this and you may not need 10,000 hours of telesales practice, but, you will need months to perfect and hone your skills. Repetition is a great trainer.

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8. What Makes Cold Calling Difficult?

Telesales is a difficult job to do consistently and your team will need a good sales manager who is constantly coaching, and supporting them if they are to be successful.

Although many sales staff see telephone selling as the entry level and beginners rung of the sales profession. However, a good Inside sales person is worth their weight in gold.

Types of sales motivation
  1. Cold Calling has an average conversion rate to appointments of 1-3%
  1. Pushy sales tactics deter 84% of buyers
  1. Sales Reps spend 40% of their time looking for sales prospects
  1. 80% of cold calls go to voicemail
  1. A survey by Leap Job claims only 2% of cold calls result in an appointment
  1. A survey by Telenet states in 2007 it took an average of 3.68 attempts to reach a prospect. Today it takes 8 attempts. 

Individual and group places on our courses can be booked by calling the office or filling out the Booking request form

9. Telephone Sales Training

We have been successfully delivering our essential telephone selling skills course since 2014. Delivered by our team of expert trainers, the course covers everything a sales team needs to generate sales leads and improve sales performance across your sales staff.

The telesales courses will help your sales team choose the most likely potential customers to call, the best methods for getting past the gatekeeper and ensure you are talking to the right person. How to build rapport, gain the customer’s interest and how to move them to the next stage of your sales process. How to handle objections and build an effective communication process with potential customers.

Lead generation is an important part of telesales success, however, in most cases you are not selling, but more often, you will need be securing a further call or meeting with other people in the buyers decision making unit and or securing a call back.

Find out how we can help you create more sales opportuntities and win more business with our telesales course now.

Why Non “Salesy” Sales Training for Consultants Works

Sales Training for Consultants

In this article we will cover...

There’s a new way to deliver sales growth…

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1. Why Being Salesy Doesn’t Work for Consultants

Being Salesy is forcing your beliefs and opinions on why someone should buy a product or service from you. This rarely works because the approach is very off-putting for the person receiving on the receiving end and in most cases damages the Consultants personal brand in addition to the brand of the business.

Being Salesy clashes with our personal values which are the unwritten rules that guide the way we live and behave. When we are living and acting in congruence with our personal values people are the most productive and the most successful which is why being “salesy” doesn’t work for consultants or anyone else for that matter.

Consultants are not Sales People, they are experts in their chosen field and any sales training should be bespoke and reflect and leverage that expertise.

2. Selling Tips for Consultants Who are Introverts

Roughly one third of the population are introverts which means they are more likely to be uncomfortable around other people whether they are selling or not.

Introverts can make great salespeople as they are usually good listeners, good at building relationships and have high level of self awareness.

There are some practical steps that Consultants who believe themselves to be introverts can take to to help themselves enjoy the experience of selling more.

Sales Training for Consultants

People who are introverts have a “self-as-story”. This self story reinforces negative beliefs such as they are introverted, not good with people and cannot sell.

It’s important to develop a new and believable “self-as-story” with more positive beliefs such as “I am not an introvert I am an Ambivert”.

Ambiverts are the third of the population who sit in the middle between introverts and extroverts.  “I am good with people and I enjoying spending time helping others.”  

Most human beings are by nature kind and well-meaning so this is again a believable statement.  

“My job is not to sell but instead to be of service, help people and create the right conditions for someone to buy; if they want to.” 

3. Sales Training for Consultants

We often are asked to train what we call Non-Selling Professionals in new selling techniques and these are people in a business where the sales function is not their primary role, they could be Consultants, but equally, they could be Lawyers, Engineers, Analysts, Accountants, Developers & Architects etc.

In most cases when we first meet them they proclaim that they could never be a salesperson – the reality is that humility is one of the traits that means that they absolutely could be a great salesperson.

Unfortunately, what’s holding these people back is that the publics’ perception of a salesperson is largely negative and the type of adjectives the public use, when asked to describe a salesperson, are words like “liar”, “selfish”, “talks too much”, “money-grabber” and “annoying”.

The reality is that most salespeople are nothing like this, however, sometimes we pay the price for those that go before us and unfortunately there are, albeit a small number of salespeople, who are like that. If you think about it though, those traits are hardly a recipe for success.

4. How to get sales leads without picking up the phone

After spending years trying to train and coach consultants, engineers and technical people from every different industry, we came to the realisation that nothing we could ever do would motivate them to pick up the phone and make a cold call consistently.

If we showed them how to make a cold call that won them a $1 million dollar order they would still prefer to come in the next day and work at their desktops. These same people, however, would be more than happy to take inbound calls and talk to strangers who had called them.

The answer to the challenge was easy then – get their phones to ring and get their email to ping. If you talk to anyone in B2B marketing they will probably say quite rightly that generating a consistent flow of inbound leads is not easy.

We worked with our own team to develop a new strategy around this and worked to implement this strategy into our own business to prove it works and to gather some good data.

What is this strategy and can it work for me? In simple terms the strategy involves leveraging the knowledge and expertise of the consultants, and position them and their company as SME’ s (Subject Matter Experts). We then help them develop thought leadership content that buyers were interested in.

We then help them take that knowledge and place it on their website in a way that can be easily found and ranked on Page 1 of Google – just the same way you found this article. This then creates a steady stream of self qualified sales leads who have already bought into the expertise of your consultants and keen to engage further.

What’s more unlike pay per click ads these articles create a steady flow of new leads that fuel future growth at no cost. Once the content is published that’s it.

No cold calls, no outbound phone calls of any sort. In fact, in some cases our clients are now closing deals via email.

If this approach interests you and you would like to learn more please contact us for further details.

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5. Training Sessions for Sales Consultants

In most cases sales training for Consultants is delivered over 1 & 2-day courses. This can work however in our experience, Consultants can immediately feel defensive if they are told they need training as they are nearly always mature adults and often have had a negative experience from previous Sales Training programmes they have attended.

The best way around this is to choose sales training for Consultants that is specifically designed for Consultants and content that highlights the skills and experience of the Consultants. The trainer should have experience of training a wide variety of non-selling professionals and be able to address the specific learning styles and needs of this type of audience.

What can be equally productive is running workshops where the Consultants get to choose what they feel would benefit them most. This way they feel more empowered as they have chosen the content and by definition, the content should be more targeted and relevant.

The only drawback to this is that this requires an experienced facilitator/trainer who knows the answers to the Consultants Sales Challenges from memory and can articulate them without a PowerPoint. If the trainer has to stop the session to look up the answers in a textbook or slide deck they will lose all credibility.

These workshops should have defined outcomes with action plans to make sure they are more than just a talking shop and deliver real impact for the Consultants and the company.

Sales Training for Consultants

6. Sales Training Tips for Sales Consultants

Most people have a common misconception that selling is all about closing and forcing people to make decisions that they might not want to make. In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth as the most successful salespeople simply don’t do this because they know it doesn’t work and in many cases destroys any trust or relationship that they have with the prospect.

In most cases, traditional Sales Training for Consultants won’t work because the techniques they use go against the Values & Beliefs of the Consultants. No matter how good the trainer is unless the content is based on actions that are congruent with the beliefs and values of the Consultant it will simply be a waste of everyone’s time and money.

What will work however is if the training is designed to position the Consultants as Trusted Advisors to their prospects and the sales activities are aligned with positioning them as Thought Leaders in their Industry.

The following sales tips help Consultants & Non-Selling Professionals understand that Professional Selling is more about building trust and relationships than it is about “Closing” prospects.

To sell more consultants should focus on building TRUST

T = Time
R = Reliability
U = Unselfishness
S = Soundness
T = Truthfulness


Set Goals and manage your own time – be effective, not busy. Be respectful of your clients’ time, turn up on time to meetings, prepare before meetings to get the most from them. Spend time with clients to help them. Focus your time on your best prospects.


Get a plan and stick to it, sales plans, communications plans and account plans. Many sales are lost when you are back in your own office. Respond to every email within 24 hours, manage expectations and take ownership of problems and follow up.


Listen, empathise and give, yes give, as in Emersons Law of Compensation. Stop trying to sell and start trying to help, have conversations, not sales pitches. Recognise when there is no fit and walk away – never force the sale. Pass on referrals and give recommendations.


Become an expert in your field. Be the “go-to” person in your industry that people refer others to. Create your own personal development plan and learn as much as you can about yourself, your customers and your customers’ customers. Mentor, coach and help others.


Be true to yourself. Have those difficult conversations with family, friends, colleagues and customers. Losing some sales, losing some battles will help you win the war. Nurture and grow your integrity, self-respect and self-belief. Be authentic and true to yourself.

These Sales Techniques are not glamorous, and they might not produce an overnight transformation however they do work. Together you will see these five areas form the basis of TRUST. Selling without trust may be possible, but it is extremely hard work and will, without doubt, limit your success. In business, the antithesis of trust is a risk, and every Buyer, every CEO, every organisation will pay more for a solution that is perceived to mitigate risk. Building and sustaining TRUST is the foundation of Mastery in sales, although many of our clients have asked us to help embed these “selling techniques” throughout their organisation, not just sales.

7. Sales Training for Professional Services

Selling Professional Services can be very different from selling as a Consultant because in many cases when you are selling Professional Services the salesperson is the product.

In B2B more so than B2C, buyers rarely purchase anything from a salesperson they don’t like or trust. There are exceptions to this when the Brand Power of the product or service is very strong, for example it doesn’t take the salesperson of the year to sell Microsoft Technical Services because the power of the Microsoft brand has pre-sold most people before they go into the sales meeting and the product is Microsoft, not the Consultant.

For Consultants who do not represent a big brand like Microsoft, Deloitte, or Bain & Co, in most cases they are the brand, they are the product, and they have to work even harder to win the sale.

In many cases what is more productive for Consultants is to stop trying to sell and focus all their energies on trying to help the prospect.

We recommend a Consultative Sales Approach which focuses the sales conversation around 5 critical questions.

  1. What are the symptoms of the business problem?

Prospects find it easier to identify symptoms however it’s the role of the expert to ask questions and dig deeper.

  1. What is the Root Cause of the Problem?

The Consultant should use Root Cause Analysis techniques to identify the underlying causes of the problems.

  1. How is this problem impacting the business?  

These questions should focus on what way the problem limits growth, profits or damage the brand in any way.

  1. Financial Impact

The consultant and the prospect need to do a basic cost-benefit analysis to ensure the client will see a return on any investment they make.  

  1. Personal Impact

Lastly, the Consultant needs to uncover any personal motives or drivers that are important to the client.

Often by simply asking these questions, the Consultant will get the opportunity to position themselves as the expert at the same time building rapport and trust with the prospect. 

consultative selling skills
Sales Training for Consultants

8. Sales Training Courses for Consultants

We have training and coaching courses available to help your consultants overcome their sales challenges.

We deliver our sales training and coaching via our Online Sales gym so we can provide support throughout and after the training period.

This helps you embed the new skills and sales behaviours in your organisation to maximise the impact of our training.

You can learn more about our Sales Training for Consultants via the following articles:

Consultative Sales process here

Consultative Selling Skills Course

Bespoke Sales Training

How to Sell Without Being Pushy
Sales Training for Consultants