For most of my career I have been involved in technical product sales. This is an ever changing market with some serious training challenges. Train a sales staff on a product today to only have that product change drastically next month and your efforts negated. This is one of the reasons why I believe that true sales success can never be based on product knowledge alone.
I have no doubt there will be plenty of sales managers and sales trainers that will take issue with this article. But my experience has taught me that sales role playing is not a great way to train. Not even close.
Anyone that has sold for any length of time has developed comfortable sales habits. So… when a trainer or manager comes in and offers a new way to increase sales… they may not see the sales training value. They start into a diatribe of exception examples of why the new training idea won’t work for them. Irritating and short sighted.
I’m a big fan of tracking performance metrics, in-depth and granular. I’m talking about much more than just tracking sales leads, appointments and opportunities however. I monitor actual daily activity that rewarded a salesperson with sales leads in the first place. Where did the lead come from? What activity was performed to get that lead? Are the sales leads quality? I want to know what is working to produce qualified leads. Here’s why.