In sport, majority of an athlete’s time is spent training and developing their skills. with only a fraction performing. In sales, it’s usually the other way around, focusing more on achieving results. However, this model needs to be revised since the key to consistent performance is sales organisations embracing a continuous training approach. Adopting this approach provides an opportunity to review, reflect and gain a deeper understanding of the essential skills, mindsets, and perspectives needed to overcome challenges and create differentiation. Let’s discover how continuous sales training turns a sales team into an all-round sales force.
The Traditional Approach to Sales TrainingTraditionally, sales training is delivered in classroom settings and via intensive sessions. These sessions are great for kickstarting a sales transformation or change programme, as they bring salespeople across the company together to learn and share. The challenge, however, is that organisations often do not plan to consistently reinforce the learnings in the long term and give little consideration to what sales teams may need for the best learning experience. Organisations that consider utilising complementary training methods can unlock the hidden potential of sales training by realising that a strong growth mindset can only be developed through continuous training.
Why It’s Important to Realise the Potential of Sales Training
“You cannot teach people anything. You can only help them discover it within themselves.”
Galileo GalileiThere is a big difference between planning sales training as a one-time exercise and designing it as a long-term strategy. Salespeople at all levels can gain essential selling skills through training. However, only through continuous learning and reinforcement will they develop the mindset and depth of understanding needed to adapt in sales conversations to increase their chances of success. According to Deloitte, the half-life of new skills is only 5 years. So, for example, if you organise a one-off training session when you want the team to adopt a new sales methodology, the chances of them retaining all the information will be low, and the probability of them defaulting back to old habits, in the short-term, will be high. However, when their learning is supported by a long-term training plan, they not only perfect their sales approach but also prepare for the upcoming changes. Especially in challenging times, salespeople who constantly expand their perspectives with sales training naturally apply this mentality, identify solutions and create opportunities more quickly. It takes time and effort to awaken this instinct.