Our recent Sales Training eBook features a collection of articles and ideas from sales and learning experts on developing a more effective sales training program. While putting the eBook together, we reached out to some of the sharpest sales minds in the business with a single question:
What is the MOST important thing to focus on when training and onboarding new sales hires?
The issue with onboarding new reps is that they have a LOT to learn; from general selling skills to product training to customer pain points and more, there’s just a ton to cover. Of course, all of these areas are important to the sales process in some way, but which ones stand out from the pack?
Here is what a few experienced sales experts had to say.
Colleen Francis, Engage Selling Solutions
“My answer is clear objectives and direction on leading indicator KPI! Most managers don’t set clear direction for the first few months on the KPIs that are required as leading indicators of future sales. In order to set your rep up for success you need to establish the benchmarks of early behaviours that are required for future sales success.”
Follow Colleen – @EngageColleen
S. Anthony Iannarino, SOLUTIONS Staffing
“The most important outcome for training is to improve the salesperson's skill sets and to provide them with the tools they need to succeed. But there is something that comes first: mindset. Adults don't learn unless they know why they are learning something, how it applies to their work – and only when they have some control over the content and delivery. Training starts with engagement, and helping the sales force acquire the right mindset.”
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Bob Apollo, Inflexion-Point Strategy Partners
“Let’s work on the assumption that you’ve hired a sales person that already has the necessary general sales skills that are required to sell your product. I believe that the most important thing you need to do when onboarding new hires is to share the accumulated knowledge of your existing sales team with them.
Although product knowledge is important, it’s never enough. You need to help them come up to speed as quickly as possible with what they need to do to target, identify, engage, qualify and close the right sort of prospects. This involves helping them understand what an ideal customer looks like, who the key stakeholders are likely to be and what is likely to matter to them, and the symptoms that suggest a product or service fit.”
Follow Bob – @bobapollo
For more from Bob on the most important aspects of new hire training, as well as additional insights from thought leaders Trish Bertuzzi and Dave Stein, download the complete eBook. You can also check out the Brainshark Learning Cloud to see how companies use Brainshark solutions to create, share and track more effective training content.