Published on November 25, 2008
The Top 5 Sales Training Issues and Recommended Solutions http://www.salestrainingdrivers.org
Brian Lambert • Joined ASTD in 2007 to lead sales training – Fifteen years of sales/sales training experience (Government, IT, services & Large and small companies) • 50,000 people in 19 countries • Founder of the United Professional Sales Association • Author of two books on sales performance • Recognized as one of most influential people in selling* • Education: – Bachelor’s degree from the University of Central Florida – Master’s of science degree in Administration and Human Resource Management from Central Michigan University, – Ph.D. candidate at Capella University * by Sales & Marketing Management Magazine, 2006
Issue One: Sales Training Apathy • The elephant in the room • Trainers too quick to take credit ‐ usually • Salespeople don’t give credit ‐ usually • Assuming what salespeople need • Going for entertainment value • Wrong executive buy‐in • Assuming that if salespeople make plan, there are no gaps in knowledge or skill
Issue One: Sales Training Apathy Leadership Support Change Management Competency- Issue One Based Approach Solutions Personal Leadership Systems View
Issue Two: Wrong Sales Training Mix • Do you talk “what” or “how”? • What’s your definition of sales training? – Product Training – Company‐specific Training – Industry Training – Skills Training • What’s your sales process? • What roles does coaching play? • Who’s designing content? Making decisions? • How do your customers make a purchase decision?
“48% OF SALESPEOPLE LEARN BY TRIAL AND ERROR TO A HIGH OR VERY HIGH DEGREE” ASTD/I4CP Research Fall 2008
Get the Right Sales Training Mix Delivery is Critical Manage Knowledge You Drive Issue Two The Content Solutions Instill Know How Real Coaching Your Buyer’s Buy
Issue Three: Lack of Sales Development System • Knee jerk reactions are common • Needs analysis is sometimes spotty • Sales career paths rarely often don’t lead anywhere • Are you helping the sales team answer the fundamental sales questions at all times? – For example: “Where am I, and what should I do?” • Reactive approach to developing content based on sales team wants, not needs
Treat Selling as a System Learning & Performance Approach Competency Based Approach Sales Training Issue Three Strategic Solutions Plan Identify Real Develop a Knowledge Coaching Gaps Program
Issue Four: Poor Measurement Techniques • Poor follow‐up after each training event • No real definition of success • Assuming that training will yield a business outcome • Little/no emphasis on measuring coaching interactions • Lack of documentation: If people believe it, it’s true
Better Measurement Techniques Measure Leading Outputs Measure Lagging Outputs Issue Four Split Sample Solutions Measure Behavioral Measure Change Knowledge Transfer
Issue Five: The Wrong Content • Prescription before diagnosis • Customized vs. standardized? • Outsourced vs. in‐house? • Training delivers more knowledge and skill, not talent or wisdom • Not understanding the organizational maturity of your sales team • Re‐inventing the wheel
Train the Right Content Don’t Buy Into “Flavor of Month” Know When To Customize Centralize Issue Five Training Solutions Select Vendors On Objective Understand Measures Competencies
In Summary: • Sales Training is not a one‐time event • Work to bring sales training to a holistic process • Choose the right content for the right time and deliver it in the right way • Measure the right outputs • Don’t take the easy way out
The Sales Profession Competency Model The definition of world‐class selling http://www.salestrainingdrivers.org
Sales Competency Model Advisory Panel Representation 16
Administrator Analyst Consultant Developer Manager Strategist Sales Roles Creating and Closing Opportunities Protecting Accounts Defining and Positioning Solutions Supporting Indirect Selling Setting Sales Strategy Managing within the Sales Ecosystem Developing Sales Force Capability Delivering Sales Training Coaching for Sales Results Building Sales Infrastructure Designing Compensation Maintaining Accounts Recruiting Sales Talent Sales Areas of Expertise Partnering Insight Solution Effectiveness • Spanning Boundaries • Analyzing Organizational Capacity • Facilitating Change • Building Business Skills • Communicating Effectively • Understanding Business Context • Formalizing Agreements • Solving Problems • Aligning to Customers • Evaluating Customer Experiences • Resolving Issues • Embracing Diversity • Setting Expectations • Gathering Intelligence • Managing Projects • Making Ethical Decisions • Negotiating Positions • Prioritizing Stakeholder Needs • Leveraging Success • Managing Knowledge • Building Relationships • Identifying Options • Articulating Value • Using Technology • Building a Business Case • Accelerating Learning •Executing Plans • Maximizing Personal Time • Aligning to the Sales Process Foundation Competencies
Thank You! Brian Lambert Director, ASTD Sales Training and Sales Training Driver O: 703‐683‐8100 F: 703‐894‐2784 E: firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.salestrainingdrivers.org
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