Sales teams that are equipped with the right training and support see greater deal volume, faster lead generation, and improved sales performance. However, too many sales leaders underestimate the potential of a comprehensive sales training program as an essential element of building a high-performing sales team.
A skilled sales team is one of the greatest assets your organisation has for creating new opportunities for growth. It’s no secret that today’s consumers are more informed than ever before and have accessible information at their fingertips.
As a result, they’re much more discerning about where they spend their money, which means savvy businesses are investing in their sales team to build trust among consumers and drive deals quicker than ever before.
We're going to address 9 key areas that will help you drive more deals, and generate more revenue. These areas are:
- What does a highly effective SMB sales training program look like?
- Developing a high-performing SMB sales team is no small feat. Here’s how to get started.
- Train your SMB team on the most effective selling techniques.
- Help your SMB team develop their soft skills.
- Help your SMB trainees understand the role of data in decision making.
- Help your SMB trainees master their craft with mastery activities.
- Help your SMB trainees build their sales skills with action activities.
- Help your SMB team stay motivated and engaged with constant support and encouragement.
- Help your SMB team stay focused with a regular cadence.
What does a highly effective SMB sales training program look like?
A sales training program should be accessible to everyone on your sales team, regardless of their role. Ideally, your training program should span at least six months and include several modules, each dedicated to a specific sales topic. Your team members should leave the program with a clear understanding of their role in the sales process, the skills they need to succeed, and the tools they can use to close more deals.
Ideally, you should also have regular sales training check-ins to discuss how the trainees are progressing, provide support during challenging times, and offer coaching when necessary. A sales training program should include topics such as sales strategy, prospecting, qualifying, developing a sales process, overcoming objections, delivering a sales pitch, and more.
When you’re building your program, make sure you include topics that are relevant to today’s sales environment.
Developing a high-performing SMB sales team is no small feat. Here’s how to get started.
A sales training program is an excellent place to start, but it’s not enough to drive real change. While sales trainings help your team members understand their role in the sales process and how to close more deals, they don’t equip your team with core skills that they need to succeed.
This means that while your team members may have the knowledge to close deals, they don’t have the skills to sustain their success over time. To drive lasting change, you need to invest in your sales team by providing them with the tools and support they need to succeed.
Investing in your team members means providing them with a structured onboarding process, meaningful sales training, ongoing development opportunities, and regular feedback.
Train your SMB team on the most effective selling techniques.
Sales has changed considerably since the 1980s. Today’s sales team members need to be equipped with the right tools and techniques to succeed in a competitive sales environment.
Rather than focusing on the number of calls a sales rep makes each day, today’s sales leaders should be focused on the quality of their team’s calls. Whether your sales reps are inside or outside of the sales funnel, they should be equipped with the tools to close more deals with less effort.
When building your sales training program, it’s important to consider how your sales team is currently selling.
Are they using the most effective selling techniques? Are they equipped with the right tools for the job? These are important questions to ask as you build your program to ensure your team members are well-equipped for success.
Help your SMB team develop their soft skills.
While sales reps have to know how to sell, it’s just as important for them to know how to listen. In fact, one of the most commonly overlooked areas of sales training is soft skills training. While your sales team members may have the knowledge to close a deal, they may not know how to do so in a way that builds trust and encourages the consumer to buy.
Because of this, it’s important to help your team members develop their soft skills to improve trust, influence, and relationship-building. Some of the most common soft skill topics in sales training programs include communication, empathy, listening skills, relationship building, influence, and building rapport.
When you’re building your program, be sure to include topics that help your team members communicate more effectively: whether that’s over the phone, in-person, or via email.
Help your SMB trainees understand the role of data in decision making.
Data is often the deciding factor when consumers are making a purchase decision. While sales reps should be equipped with the tools and techniques to close more deals, they also need to understand how data is being used to make decisions.
In fact, a recent report found that 60-70% of all B2B buying decisions are data-driven. This means your sales team members should be equipped with the tools to collect and use data to drive more deals and close more sales.
When building your sales training program, be sure to include topics that help your team members understand the role of data in decision making. You can also ask your team members to participate in daily data activities like data journaling to help them understand the role of data in their personal sales process.
Help your SMB trainees master their craft with mastery activities.
One of the most effective ways to equip your sales team members with the tools they need to close more deals is to help them master their craft. Whether that’s mastering the sales process, building rapport, or closing techniques, it’s important to include activities and exercises that help your team members master their craft.
When building your sales training program, be sure to include activities like sales scenarios, sales journaling, product reviews, and more. These activities can help your team members learn from their past sales experiences, identify areas for improvement, and build their confidence.
These activities also help your team members build a deeper understanding of their role on the sales team. As a result, they’re better equipped to use their skills and tools to close more deals.
Help your SMB trainees build their sales skills with action activities.
Another way to help your team members build their sales skills is to encourage them to participate in action activities. These are in-the-moment activities that allow your team members to practice their sales techniques in real-time sales scenarios.
When building your sales training program, be sure to include action activities that help your team members build their sales skills. Some of the most common sales skills activities include cold calling, sales call role plays, customer discovery exercises, and sales call feedback exercises.
When you include these activities and exercises in your sales training program, you’re helping your team members apply their knowledge to real-life sales scenarios. They’re also gaining valuable experience that can help them close more deals in the future.
Help your SMB team stay motivated and engaged with constant support and encouragement.
While sales training programs equip your team with the tools and techniques they need to close more sales, they don’t provide any support when things get challenging. This can leave your team members feeling stuck and unmotivated when they hit roadblocks along the way. To keep your team engaged and motivated throughout their sales journey, you need to provide them with constant support and encouragement.
When building your sales training program, be sure to include topics and exercises that help your team members stay motivated and engaged. This can include building a strong sales culture, providing opportunities for recognition and celebration, and providing regular feedback.
In addition to providing support for your team members, it’s also important to celebrate their wins along the way. When you celebrate your team members’ progress, you’re not only encouraging them to keep going, but you’re also helping them build confidence in their abilities.
Help your team stay focused with a regular cadence.
Another way to keep your team members engaged is to provide a regular cadence of sales training. A regular cadence of sales training can help your team members stay focused and engaged throughout the sales process.
If you offer sales training once a month, for example, you’re less likely to see your team members stay engaged with the content. When building your sales training program, be sure to include a regular cadence so team members can stay engaged and focused on their sales journey.
It’s important to provide regular sales trainings so your team members don’t forget the tools and techniques they need to be successful.
How can Mentor Group help SMBs with Sales Enablement?
At Mentor Group, we don't believe in a one-size-fits-all approach to anything, and especially not when it comes to sales enablement. We know that running a small or medium sized business poses a unique set of challenges, and unique challenges require unique solutions.
That's why we developed Sales Academy - our sales enablement solution designed specifically for SMBs. For less than £1 per user per day, your people get on-demand training videos, designed by industry experts, to help them learn how to become elite sellers from the comfort of their own desk.
Available on any device, and without any need to download an app, you can provide your people with the skills, tools, and mentality they need to sell more often, for more money, faster than ever before.
Check out Sales Academy, and how it can transform the revenue potential of your business, now.