What really makes a business successful? Although you might be making good profits, could they be better? How are you meant to measure whether or not the practices adopted within your company are delivering the success it is capable of?
Sure, you could look towards your employees to answer these questions:
- Are your employees happy to be working for your company?
- Are they paid enough?
- Are they engaged by their work and striving to see your company succeed?
Although the answers given to these questions may be satisfactory, there is only one way to ensure that your company continues to grow and succeed: through training. Continued training, especially in the areas related to sales and marketing, can deliver results you have never even dreamed of.
Just because your company is making a decent profit, does not mean that it is at its peak performance. Employees who are continuously trained and encouraged to develop their skills are a bigger asset to the company and are able to deliver more for your bottom line.
After all, your employees are only human. They’re not programmable robots who can be shown something once and expected to get it right each time. Through continued training over the course of their employment, you keep your employees engaged with their work and switched on.
Not only does continued training help to keep your employees’ knowledge and skills topped up, it makes them feel valued. If you are investing in the success of your employees, then they are likely to respond well, work hard and stick around your company through the good and bad in-order to see it succeed. Although you may think that continual training is a burden for your employees, it’s really not.
#1. There are Several Training Options
This all depends on what your company does, which industry you operate in and what you are providing to your customers or clients. Not only are there several training options available in terms of content, but the format through which training is delivered varies a lot, too.
Employee training can be done online – often referred to as “e-learning” – on-site at your offices or off-site at a training provider’s own institution. Different training methods will apply to different teams and people within your company, so doing your research and figuring out which methods of training will suit which teams better is important.
It’s not all about teams, though – personalized and individually tailored training is key. Different employees within teams will respond to different methods of training, and it is important to ensure that whichever training regime or course you choose tailors to different learners.
For example, some people prefer to learn everything through long-winded textbooks whereas others respond better to engaging physical activities which involve the wider group. Choosing a course which incorporates all different types of learning methods and delivers them through engaging means is the best way to get a good ROI, both in terms of money spent on training and the time spent training your employees.
You also need to figure out which teams in your company are in need of training or are going to benefit more from it.
- Is your marketing team putting out the best marketing materials possible, and are you seeing a good response to these materials?
- Is your sales team managing to secure new leads and turn current prospects into paying clients or customers?
- Are your customer service representatives delivering the standard of care you expect from them?
Regardless of your findings, you should always start with your sales team and then work on other areas of your business afterwards.
#2. Your Sales Team’s Training is of Paramount Importance
You should always start with your sales team first. For some companies, it’s immaterial as they have the time and money available to train all their teams at the same time, but for smaller companies who are just starting out, then delivering good sales training to sales personnel is the best starting point. Why? Because without customers who are buying your product or using your services, you are going to have very little need for an expansive marketing department or customer service staff.
Sales training is often interactive and involves simulations and roleplay scenarios to mimic the kinds of encounters sales staff will have with clients. In addition to this, a good sales course will teach your employees how to build strong relationships with customers, how to pitch to potential leads and how to reflect on their encounters and experiences with clients to further improve their sales potential. It’s not just a course which can be delivered once and then forgotten about, however. Sales training is something which requires continual attention in-order to deliver best results, especially as newer members join your sales team.
We are not saying you should be embarking upon sales training courses each weekend. Instead, consider a once-per-year full-service sales training course which delivers the full package and then supplement this with top-up training which can be delivered at your company’s office perhaps once every three-or-so months.
The frequency of sales training required largely depends on your company, your sales team and your wants and needs, so it’s important to have a sit down and consider all your options in the context of your company and what you want to achieve, or what you are not achieving.
#3. Training Should Be Delivered Continuously
It’s not enough to simply provide a comprehensive training course to your employees and then expect them to remember it forever. Over time, the skills and knowledge gained from a sales training course or otherwise begin to fade, and this can have a negative impact on the long-term success of your company. It’s common practice for companies to deliver supplementary training every so often to ensure that what was taught on a course doesn’t become forgotten as employees settle into their own work practices.
Although providing training can be time-consuming and expensive, the return on investment you can benefit from as a company – particularly in relation to your sales team – is huge. You can’t expect to succeed in today’s hugely competitive business market if you aren’t equipping your staff with the knowledge, skills and drive to achieve what you need for growth. In addition to this, staff who are provided with regular training are far more likely to stick around and do their bit for your company in the long-term as they feel more valued as an employee.
As an employer, there are lots of different training courses and initiatives available to your employees. Deciding which team or which people to provide training to can be difficult, especially when you don’t have money to spend on everyone, however, by ensuring you have a sales team which have been fully trained and provided with the knowledge they need to succeed before training any other teams or people, you can benefit from a sales team who are constantly bringing in additional sales revenue which can be further invested into training other people within your company. As with anything, deciding where to focus training depends on the needs of your company and is a decision only you can make.