Unplanned sales are rare. A good salesperson knows this. The plan should be defined, objectives should be set, and preparations should be made in advance. Sales trainers and consumers alike understand the importance of practice and learn. Customer expectations are managed well by managing losses and cutting losses when appropriate.
Numerous resources are available to assist with sales basics and call preparation, communicating effectively, resolving issues, building commitments, etc. There is so much information available online that it makes sense to hire people who know sales basics.
However, when businesses look for sales training, they usually focus on the basics. A lot of time is spent on fundamentals in their training program.
It takes a lot of money to train salespeople properly, but the results are disappointing. In frustration, many salespeople bring on another provider to do the basic work.
Skills-based education follows a predictable pattern.
- Fundamentals of sales play a key role? Absolutely!
- Is it necessary to review them? Absolutely.
- Is coaching necessary? Certainly.
- Can you afford a sales training program that doesn’t teach your company’s unique sales needs? Probably not.
Then why? Spending so much time and money on something that delivers poor results is a poor use of resources. Instead, hire sales reps with the necessary skills. With the help of sales enablement, frontline managers can reinforce these sales skills. On field rides and during deal reviews, these fundamentals should be continuously reinforced.
Do you need to train any skills?
In other words, advanced training and sales. What’s that like?
There are advanced programs in other areas as well as sales.
A combination of four sales execution elements constitutes advanced sales training:
- Knowing the product and the customer is essential
- Communicating your message
- Selling skill – knowing what selling actions will lead to a deal closing
- Customer engagement and buyer enablement – content
Putting these elements into context is the key.
It is common to teach foundational skills out of context. To illustrate, sales training courses usually only teach about products. Sometimes, they just teach students how to approach questions effectively or reveal values. The simple act of learning a receiver’s plays from a playbook is insufficient. The practice of running a route correctly in the context of the paly is important.
In the advanced selling process, the context is considered first, then the critical ingredients essential to an effective customer interaction are considered. Describe what the sales rep needs to pay attention to during a negotiation or meeting with a client in a specific context.
Specificity is key, as it adds value to salespeople. It is important to add more context to your advanced training to better meet the buyer’s needs. We should simulate real-world situations as closely as possible. Consider the following:
Who is the seller meeting with? What is their objective? Reps must communicate their perspectives in discovery meetings in order to diagnose effectively. The seller may benefit from a meeting with a buyer like this, but the buyer will be wasting their time.
Role-playing! That’s exactly what this is. There’s so much more to advanced selling. Message, action, and content are combined to teach sellers how to carry out winning plays. In advance training, skills are taught and coaching is provided to coach good execution of common selling scenarios.
Once again, context-based training is the priority.
How does advanced training benefit you?
In the right hands, sales education equips salespeople with the capacity to see, adapt, and engage:
- Recognize patterns in deals
- Adapt your strategy appropriately, and
- Take advantage of the opportunity by executing the right play
One piece of content, knowledge, skill, or message is rarely enough, especially in complex sales deals. Together, these elements create value for the customer. The right combination – applied appropriately – creates true value between customer and company.
Those who are most successful and seasoned do this naturally. Your game-changing system relies on advanced sales training to ensure that your entire sales force is coached.