7 months ago
February 21, 2017

How to Improve Your Sales Team Training in 2014

This article will detail a number of ways you can improve your sales team training and to lead your team to increased sales.

Claire McConnachie

With the confusion of any 2014 changes to your company clearing up and your team likely settled in for serious effort, now is the perfect time to improve your sales team training. Many sales team leaders lose sight of the purpose of their position and end up bogged down in administrative tasks–secretaries for their own subordinates, in effect. This article will detail a number of ways you can improve your sales team training and do what you’re supposed to do: lead your team to increased sales.

Use Metrics Effectively

Proper use of metrics is crucial if you want to improve your sales team training. That means having the right tools for tracking relevant information–calls, web sales, emails, etc. Understanding what metrics matter and which do not will be vital moving forward, so make sure you have that understanding before you start adjusting your training.

Soft data matters as well. Realizing, for example, that a member of your team has an attitude problem that causes failures in certain areas requires that you know your team well on both a hard data and soft data level. Regardless of exact toolsets and methodologies, effective metric usage will be key to anything you do to improve your sales team training.

Hold Team Members Accountable

To improve your sales team training, you need to be sure you’re holding sales team members accountable for their failures. That also means recognizing what failures arise beyond a team member’s control and working to adapt. If you have adequate data collected about your team’s sales and a strong understanding of the individuals and processes involved, you have the knowledge to recognize what is your responsibility and what is theirs.

Your job and your team members’ jobs are distinct and separate things. If you pick up the slack where your team fails instead of working to overcome their weaknesses, they will continue to offer substandard performance. Improve your sales team training by knowing what needs to be improved in the first place and applying appropriate pressure.

Focus on Individuals

Individuals in a team all sell differently. With proper metrics and the willingness to hold your team accountable, you have the tools to work with individuals, where your skills as team lead can do the most good. Weaknesses in lead generation, for example, may not be a teamwide issue, but rather a problem with one or two individuals.

Identifying those individuals and working to improve on their specific issues will improve your sales team training more than applying unfocused education to the entire team. This may feel like babysitting at times, but studies have shown that this sort of individual-focused sales training benefits teams most. The insight into personal processes, strengths, and weaknesses will also give you tools for positioning individuals most effectively in the team.

Keep Learning

You’re reading this, so you’re off to a good start. In the end, to improve your sales team training you must be a more knowledgeable salesperson than the members of your team. You need not necessarily be able to outsell any individual on your team, but you should have a breadth and depth of technical sales knowledge that lets you advise and improve your entire team.

That means studying sales and continuing to learn techniques, strategies, and tactics so you can pass the lessons along. Nothing can improve your sales team training more than improving your personal understanding of sales.

Claire McConnachie

Claire is a Western University graduate with a background in recruiting, sales and customer service. As a Recruitment Consultant, her goals are to place the best people in the right roles resulting in satisfaction for both the candidate and client.