Sales training is essential to an organization’s success, and it’s a powerful tool for developing the full potential of every sales rep. Not all sales training programs are created equal, however, and the success of a program is due in large part to the individual delivering it.
It takes a unique personality to facilitate a sales training program in a way that is memorable and capable of lasting results. Here are 7 shared characteristics of a good sales trainer:
1. Has Walked the Walk
If someone is charged with training a room full of salespeople, it’s imperative that they’ve actually sold at some point in their career. Trainees will be able to tell if their instructor has gained insight from professional experience, and the information will be more valuable if it perceived as coming from a credible source.
2. Has Led a Sales Team
Being able to draw on a professional selling background will win the trust of an audience, but having the experience of leading a sales team will allow a sales trainer to understand the needs of a group—and what they will need to hear in order to become engaged with the material. Strong leadership skills allow for more effective classroom coaching.
3. Is Intellectually Curious
The most successful sales trainers have a passion for learning themselves. They are willing to spend time learning about their audience, the company’s product or service, and the organization’s unique business challenges. This drive to learn guarantees the group will have a meaningful and transformative experience in the classroom. They stay up-to-date on sales training industry trends, and it shows.
4. Is Humble
Many people who are drawn to the training profession tend to be ego-driven. They want to be at the front of a room in control of an audience. They will speak AT the audience instead of facilitating a good learning experience. A good sales trainer understands that it’s not all about him or her… it’s about the salespeople in the group and how well they can apply what they learn.
5. Facilitates Discussion
Learning is most effective when participants are interested and engaged with the material being presented. A good sales trainer knows what kind of questions get people talking, and can adapt to the unique set of personalities present in a program. They will orchestrate constructive conversations, and reel in off-topic chatter.
6. Is Altruistic
The best sales trainers will be genuinely invested in the success of their participants, and this will come through in their delivery. They are intrinsically motivated by giving back, and they get a deep and genuine “charge” out of seeing participants connect the dots and get excited about the material. A good sales trainer loves to hear success stories and is plugged into what happens after the training program.
7. Is a World-Class Communicator
Training programs condense a large amount of information into a short period of time. A good sales trainer will have mastered the ability to communicate complex ideas into easy-to-absorb concepts that resonate with attendees. A great message isn’t of any value until it has been effectively communicated.