You’ve heard the adage that salespeople are born, not made. We call BS on that.
There are certain personality traits that make salespeople perform better such as assertiveness, self-awareness, empathy, optimism, and problem-solving. However, with the proper training, even those who don’t fit the traditional salesperson mold can greatly improve performance (and all the introverts said Amen).
You know what’s not BS? Hollywood makeover stories (okay, maybe a few of them are). While Pinocchio and Toula Portokalos weren’t at the top of their game at first, they eventually got there with a little help (aka training). And finding the right e-learning platform for your sales team is like the fairy dust of training.
Since 81 percent of new hires fail (yeah, that’s a lot of goodbye lunches to plan), training your newbies is more crucial than ever. Don’t waste those first few months with repetitive training that will make your new hires wish they’d pursued art school instead. Luckily for everyone, Windex and an e-learning platform can fix everything.
Even your less-than-ideal salespeople can be confident sales stars by using an e-learning platform with these capabilities:
Various formats for training the people skills necessary for success: Not all employees have the same learning style. Choose an e-learning platform that understands the struggle. Training for soft skills like active listening can be done through video examples or audio clips of actual sales calls. Your new hires will thank you — one minute of video can equate to 1.8 million written words and replace a lot of training time with getting back to work.
Courses with interactivity and quizzes help trainees easily digest information so they can regurgitate it back quickly (ew). Vocabulary matching, fill-in-the-blanks and situational exercises do a whole lot more for the brain than passively listening or reading.
Real-time feedback and analytics: An e-learning platform with the ability to measure training effectiveness means you can see what your new hires are actually learning and where they need additional training. Real-time assessments allow you to quickly test knowledge, identify gaps, and address any issues. Once any issues are identified, you can provide additional coaching or optimize your training courses as needed.
Just-in-time training: A web-based learning platform allows employees to quickly get trained on a topic, perhaps while on hold with a customer call. As the muzak emanates from the headpiece, your employee can speedily search for the proper way to politely call a customer’s bluff without sounding offensive.
Snackable content: Since humanity has progressed to the point where we literally have attention spans shorter than goldfish, let’s leave retaining the big loads of information to historians. Provide tidbits such as company mission, specific product details, phone best practices, and the office Facebook policy, all in snack-sized portions that your trainees will remember.
Self-directed learning: Employee turnover might be high not only because new hires weren’t what you expected, but you weren’t what they expected. Millennials are all about going at their own pace and doing their own thing. If your team members are college educated, there is a higher likelihood they will want you to load on the challenges. Using a tool that allows for trainees to decide which courses to take in order to develop their professional skills feels empowering. It also provides motivation to put real clothes on every morning.
If your sales team can use some more oomph, an e-learning platform could be an easy fix to avoid even bigger problems, like having to conduct exit interviews eight weeks after onboarding your new hires who “couldn’t even.”
Has an e-learning platform helped transform your team from intimidated new hires to fly sales guys? Tell us your team transformation stories in the comments.