When training your Sales team, you and many other Sales Enablement leaders (despite how compelling the content may be) will find that your sales training class did not grasp the content you were teaching. Did you look around the room to see if they were still listening? Did anyone wake themselves up with a “snore”?
This post is about the importance of sales training fundamentals. The best sales training content is forgotten without memorable delivery. As the Sales Enablement leader, you need to stimulate interest during the entire program. Content won’t do it alone. You need to remember to practice the basics. If you don’t, a few “snores” might be heard.
Download a copy of our FUNdamentals of Training Checklist to keep them engaged.
Preventing the “Head-Bob”
Your salespeople will benefit from a worthy training program in numerous ways. Understanding your competition, products/services and selling techniques instills confidence. You should also include topics such as buyer prospecting and how to leverage technology.
However, below are three important fundamentals you should remember when developing attention grabbing training:
- Immediately spark interest
- Present the material in an interesting way
- Keep the program interactive during the entire training session
Do these well and you will have them on the edge of their seats. You can follow the three tips below to keep them attentive.
Tip #1: “What’s in it for me?”
Forget about the training content for a moment. Motivation is the key to many successful programs and certainly important to salespeople. You need to reveal how the training will directly benefit them. This needs to be done upfront, at the beginning of the program. You need to answer the “What’s in it for me” question.
You will immediately grab their attention if you answer just one of these questions:
- How can I make money and how much?
- What do I have to do to get promoted?
- How can I get more free time?
- How do I work smarter; not harder?
- What do I need to do to keep my boss happy?
Do you see a pattern? Maybe money? Maybe independence? Now you have their attention. It’s time for a little interaction to keep the “snores” down.
Tip #2: Interesting and Entertaining
To keep your salespeople engaged, you must entertain. Use images, interactive exercises and demonstrations to inform them about the subject matter. Tell a story on each sales topic. Or share a scenario they can relate to – keep it real. Here are 6 ideas to do that:
- “WOW Factor”. Use a “WOW Factor” to grab attention in the beginning of your story. Sales people want to hear a compelling reason to listen. Tell them how much money they can make. This almost always works.
- Have a prop. A prop is anything that supports your message. A smart board or iPad drawing quantifying the revenue opportunity is powerful.
- Share a recent experience in the field. Your experience will add relevancy and content to the discussion.
- Show, don’t tell. Share an insight from a prospect who became a customer. A message from a “real” customer carries more weight.
- Make it active. Research indicates that the average attention span of an adult is about 20 minutes. Add a video clip every 20 minutes to allow your audience to recharge.
- Move around. Create a reason to move around the room. Have the prop up front and the support materials in the back. Keeping your audience’s eyes moving can go a long way toward maintaining attention.
You have grabbed their attention, you made it interesting and they are engaged. Now it is time to get them actively involved in the training.
Tip #3: Interactive
Do you think salespeople are competitive? Absolutely is the right answer. Stimulate their competitive nature. Put your audience in situations that require them to compete with their peers:
- Role Plays. Confidence is the most important characteristic for a salesperson. The more confidence, the more sales. Sticking to the basics and practicing fundamentals will instill confidence in your sales team.
- Games. You should frequently test their knowledge and retention of key selling concepts. Give them quizzes with either cash awards, medals or other visual props as prizes. Online games or contests are best, but pen and paper work.
If you forget about the importance of delivery, your audience will retain less information. This translates into longer ramp-up times and fewer sales. These 3 tips will help you deliver memorable sales training content. And the “snores” will disappear.
Download a copy of our complete FUNdamentals of Training Checklist to keep them engaged.
Are you going to make your number?
Leverage the SBI Revenue Growth Diagnostic for a few short minutes using this tool to determine if you are likely or unlikely to make your number. Once completed you can evaluate the effectiveness of your go-to-market strategy. You can print, share, download, and email your results.