In most companies, the sales force is the engine of revenue, whether it consists of one person or one thousand. Still, many companies under-invest in the training of this key asset or resist investing at all. Often, sales people are left on their own to learn the skills necessary to be successful in sales.
Here are four solid reasons to put sales skills training in your budget and to fight to keep it there:
1. Your Competition Does It.
If your competition makes this investment in their sales people and you do not, then over the medium to long term, they will simply outsell you. As a consequence of sales training, their people will have a better understanding of what to do and when to do it in more situations than your staff will. They will be better at prospecting and rely less on discounting or other concessions to win deals. They will win more close or tight sales, and earn more customer loyalty for their company.
2. Your Competition Does Not Do It.
As in the above, the benefits outlined will accrue to your sales force. A trained sales force works with a Sales Process and a defined set of actions for given situations. Arbitrariness is reduced and customer objections or demands are handled with sales strategies, not discounts, or concessions.
3. Your Sales Staff Wants You To Do It.
Most sales people want to know how to do their job better and more successfully. Many experienced sales people know that on-the-job know-how will only carry them so far. They would like to better understand why they lose some sales and win others, which deals to walk away from, and which to fully embrace. They want better strategies and tactics than the often 'ad hoc' coaching they get from management.
4. Your Customers Want You To Do It!
Move than ever, customers are tired of so-called sales executives who excel at spouting unsupported marketing claims about their product/service or company, and know little or nothing about the customer’s needs or problems. Legions of sales representatives have no idea how to systematically and professionally work with a customer to uncover needs, and develop and present viable solutions that will genuinely benefit the customer.
Your customers want your sales force to be better trained and have the skills to probe for hidden details about their problems, to evaluate and choose from alternatives, to assess financial issues, and to know how to engage and deal with senior management and other stakeholders. They want the value that a better-trained sales force will bring to them. In return, they will give you their business.Good sales training, implemented and delivered professionally will always be a positive investment for a company and can produce unlimited returns.