According to Salesforce.com, a sales rep spends 67 percent of their time doing something besides selling. We know all too well that a good chunk of that time is spent on reporting, but another significant portion of it is spent in training sessions. Too often those training sessions are in-person, large group training sessions designed to provide the greatest amount of information to the most people in one sitting.
Sales training is a $5 billion dollar industry, according to Sales Performance International and companies spend as much as $30,000 or more training individual sales reps.
Sales trainers are smart people. They know when something is broken, and if The Bridge Group is correct and sales reps are only meeting their quota half of the time, then something is very broken. It is clear that sales kick off events, in-room presentations, and mandated day-long training sessions are not working for the 50 percent of today’s sales learners who are failing to meet quota. E-learning programs can fix many of the problems with sales training.
Sales managers, especially B2B and technology sales executives, are fighting an uphill battle to recruit and retain their sales staff. In fact, according to Manpower's 2016 survey sales representatives are the third toughest role to fill for any organization. But, it turns out that more so than many other tools, effective sales enablement programs can play an outsized role in helping sales managers increase retention and job satisfaction amongst the sales team.
We have all worked with sales people. Think about the last great sales person you worked with – the one that helped you make the right decision for your business. Chances are that person is engaging, committed and dependable. Most likely that rep has had soft skills training. Of course, the sales rep has also learned how to prospect, position the product, and negotiate. But those technical skills are not the skills that have made you a loyal customer. When it comes to being a successful salesperson, sales managers say that soft skills training matters most.
Only 31 percent of organizations currently employ social selling tactics. This despite the fact according to Invesp, 78 percent of people report that a company’s social media efforts impact their purchases. There is a clear link between trusted, educational content delivered via social media, and sales success. So why aren’t more organizations taking advantage of the benefits of social selling?
The great college basketball coach John Wooden once said, “A coach must never forget that he is a leader and not merely a person with authority.”