Why do you need customized sales training program? Well…there are a few reasons: 1) People learn differently, so an out of the box approach is ineffective. 2) You need to expedite the learning curve of your sales reps. A customized sales training program will do both of these. The importance of a customized approach is paramount to the effectiveness of your organization.
Customizing a sales training program is easier than you think. You’re not going to put each rep through his/her own onboarding class. But you are going to tailor your content, modality and style to each rep. Here’s how:
- Content Options: Again, people learn differently. Some people are visual, some are auditory and some need interaction and repetition. If you only have one style of training, (i.e. pre-reading material and a boot-camp) it won’t stick. You won’t dismiss the “training event” entirely. But you will augment it. You may not have the luxury of an LMS (Learning Management System). But that doesn’t mean you can’t create and serve up training content in different modalities. You can create PowerPoints, Prezi, videos or white papers to name a few. The goal is to step outside the box. Do more than what you are doing today. Remember, as the sales enablement leader, your sales reps are your customers. Create epic content for them, they will thank you for it later.
- Timing: A one and done approach is antiquated. Use a page from your marketing colleague’s playbook. Use a drip methodology to serve up content to your sales org. There are tools out there that allow you to gamify, test and drip content. Look into them, they may be worthwhile. If you choose not to go that route, it’s ok. There are still ways to get content into sales’ hands. Again, think of options. Daily tips and tricks, weekly newsletters, monthly webinars, quarterly meetings, annual sales kickoffs, etc. Make sure you have a consistent cadence. The take away is, a one and done approach won’t work. Use the same approach for testing. Tailor the testing to the initiative and group. New hires should be tested more frequently than tenured reps. A big initiative (i.e. social prospecting) is a great way to use drip testing. Frequency and timing are key. Continue to educate incrementally.
- Be Agile: Agility is key. It’s incumbent upon you and the sales management team to identify gaps in the sales reps’ skills and abilities. You need to then customize content to fills those gaps. Identify the modalities that best resonate and drive adoption and roll them out. This is the true determinant of a custom sales training program. Ensure you have the ability to see gaps in learning in real time. Then, close the gaps in real time.
All of these dimensions are customizable. More importantly employing these different methods are what make your training customized. As the Sales Enablement leader, YOU are responsible for the sales training initiatives. The one size fits all approach is stale. Sales reps have been to “training events” throughout their careers, which makes them callused. Mix it up on them. Customization will show that you have a plan on how to enable the team.
Ask yourself. Do you have the right training content? Do you have the right training vehicles to drive adoption? Are you using a customized approach to educate your sales team? If you answered no to any of those questions, then you need to click here and download: Tips and Tricks: Customized Sales Training.