Heavy investments. Unprepared reps. Unhappy buyers. There’s clearly a discrepancy between the time and money that organizations are pouring into sales rep training and how that training resonates with reps later on. In fact, most reps forget 80% of what they’ve learned within six months of being onboarded.
How can we bridge that gap between sales training and sales execution?
In his article, Bridging the Gap from Knowing to Doing in Sales, co-founder of LearnCore Vishal Shah looks at that very question: “In any discipline ‘practice makes perfect’ and providing ongoing training bridges the gap between initial training/onboarding and on-the-job performance.”
Ongoing training, or continuous learning, is the perfect way to keep reps up-to-date and prepared for any prospect or customer conversation that a sales rep may have. Especially when it’s on-demand, mobile-ready, and easily accessible in a central location (for example, their CRM). Why? Two good reasons.
For one, reps are notorious just-in-time learners; and the ability to quickly and easily refresh their core selling skills or access the important facts and figures specific to the persona, company, and industry of the account they are about to meet with is critical.
Second, learning throughout the sales process—not just during onboarding and a few designated times throughout the year—allows reps to reinforce key skills as they are engaging with prospects and customers. Learning, practicing, and applying those tools in real-time is invaluable for professional development.
The teachers and coaches of this world are onto something when they harp on the “practice makes perfect” principle. And perhaps if we apply the concept to sales and enable practice throughout all stages of the sales cycle, reps will be more prepared, customers will be happier, and everyone will win.