Guide to Choosing a Sales Training Firm
If you expect increased sales performance and ROI from your training, make sure to look for sales training that’s designed to transform your sales team’s:
- Applied, workday skill sets
- Mental maps of how the sale works (i.e., how your team interprets client interaction/signals)
- Ability to consistently connect the dots between 1 & 2
So what does that mean? It means the “how to” and the “why to” can never be disconnected.
Think about it in terms of sports. It’s not enough to tell a football player to keep his center of weight down and behind him, or to say, “keep your head up and your tail down.” You have to both say that and show how and why that advice works. Through drill, you connect the technique to your team’s intuitive experience of the game.
Great coaches do this instinctively. Somehow they know that once the tactical advice connects with a gut-level understanding of “why,” their players will start executing on the field.
The same dynamic applies to your sales team: When a tip like “Do these two things when presenting price,” connects with the psychology of selling at high margins, your team’s sales margins rise. And that only happens by connecting the “how to” with the “why to.”
How to Select a Sales Firm Dedicated to Treating On-The-Field Success and Sales Performance
Just as smart sales prospecting screens out unsuitable leads to focus on qualified prospects, prospecting for smart sales training that will increase your sales performance asks crucial questions that – based on validated studies and evidence – helps screen out firms incapable of providing you with meaningful results and ROI:
1. Will the sales training move beyond event-based training to include in-the-field reinforcement?
You can’t make tactical advice stick – or connect it to a sales professional’s game plan – without field drill and practice. Will your sales team be asked to use what they’ve learned in the training program in their daily sales activities? Will their trainer coach them through tough selling situations, helping them use the selling system they’ve been taught to resolve their uncertainty? If the training is strictly event-based, or if you get a “no” to any of these questions, find someone else to do your training.
2. Will your team be coached by sales professionals who are current in the skills they’re teaching?
A trainer can’t help coach your sales team through the application of tactics and techniques unless he or she has real-world experience applying the very same techniques and processes being coached. And having once held a commission-based job way back in ’89 won’t cut it; we’re talking current, credible experience.
3. Will your training be customized for your unique sales environment?
If a sales training firm is just peddling theory, then there’s nothing to customize, as theory is necessarily generalized to begin with. But specific “how to” advice has to be modified and tailored to individual applications. So if a sales training firm won’t customize training, they’re probably sales theorists rather than sales performance enhancing trainers.
4. Does the sales training firm also focus on sales management training?
Changing applied daily behavior – hardwiring new skills into your sales culture – requires new behavior from sales managers too. So if a sales firm doesn’t stress the importance of sales management training and the use of validated tools for helping sales managers, you can be sure they’re not serious about creating lasting results for your company.
5. Finally, what kind of resources, history, and churn rate does the sales training firm have?
Does the firm have corporate facilities? How much depth and experience do they have on their sales training team? What’s their trainer/coach churn? What about customer churn? And speaking of customers, have they serviced clients like you or in similar industries as you before?
See what a disciplined application of how to and why to has done for the sales success of The Brooks Group’s clients.
What you’ve just read are five, well-validated, solid tips on how to wisely choose a sales training firm, minus the obligatory pitching of our own services. But we obviously believe very seriously in the importance of providing the sales professional with both the know how and the why of sales success.
In fact, we believe our best in the world ability to provide sales professionals with both the “know how” and the “know why” of sales success is what defines The Brooks Group. So if you’d like to see how we can fulfill the criteria in our five what-to-look for tips, read our About Us page and see for yourself how we’re unique in the industry.