Sales representatives are the face of the company. They are the one who comes in direct contact with customers and serves them. No matter what the company is, there ultimate goal is to makes sales in order to earn profit. The attitude and behavior of the sales rep towards their customer reflects the sale performance so it is important to provide training to the sales personnel to improve performances. The things learnt in institutions or university does not hold any credibility in the real world, so training should be imparted by the organization to develop their skills for sales.
Training helps the employees to know the functioning of the organizations and what are the needs and goals of the company. Being a representative of a company, sales personnel should have a clear idea about the culture and how it works. There are three types of training that an organization should offer to its sales reps to improve sale performance:
- Product Training
The job of a sales person is to sell the product and services offered by the company to its customers. So it is important to have a transparent knowledge about the product or services they are going to approach the customers for. The training supervisors should provide the full knowledge about the features, benefits, types and price range of the product and services they offer to avoid any kind of confusion or misunderstandings. When you know the details properly, it gives you the confidence to talk about it and convince people to buy it. If you are not convinced, you cannot convince others.
- General Sales Training
In this type of training, sales personnel are given details about the general skills required for selling. It includes communication skills, hospitality and how to be courteous while approaching customers. It also includes interpersonal skills like body language, common sense etc, so that they can be instantaneous while answering to the customers. If they lack these skills then they will be hesitant while communicating features of their products, which leave a negative impact in the mind of the customers. Therefore, training helps in overall grooming of the sales personnel making them presentable and attracts customers.
- Training about the sales system
As sales personnel, it is very important for you to have a clear understanding of the sale system of the organization. They should have the knowledge about the stocks, budget, payment methods and other internal factors that helps in making the sale. For a newbie, it will take time to understand the entire process by themselves, so it becomes easier when these things are been taught in their training period which saves a hell lot of time.
Unfortunately, sometimes these trainings didn’t meet the expectations of the sales managers. According to a survey, 87% of these trainings become futile as the employees are unable to retain the knowledge for more than 30 days. This happens because the trainings are provided just for a formality and not with a real intention of educating employees and the employees also takes it casually because of the learning method. Therefore to improve the sales performance it is important to improve the trainings procedure first. The training methods should be customized keeping in mind the objective of sales which will help the employees to learn and retain the information.
Firstly, if retention is the problem then the best way to solve it is to deliver the information in smaller batches, large chunks of information creates a risk of overloading. This will help them to digest the information in a better way. The major reason that these training session fails is that most of the employees finds it boring and ends up not attending it. The trainer should engage the trainees in engaging activities like quizzes, debates, role plays etc. which will help them to retain the knowledge through these moments. Make the session interactive and let them do the talking which will help them break the ice and builds up a team spirit.
The training session should be specific and based on the particular product or service. If you keep the session general then it takes away the interest of the trainees and also waste a lot of their time. Trainings for sales personnel is never time based, it has to be regular as there might be launch of new products and services and change in the policies of the company, so training should be continuous. The sales manager should track and measure the performances of the sales personnel to know whether they are being able to perform or not and if not, they must offer the training sessions to upgrade their skills. If you want better results, you have to train harder!