Sales training should be something your team loves.
To inspire our teams, we need to make it our mission to provide motivational training, and we hope that this article will leave you with sales training ideas you’ll need to get your team feeling encouraged.
Here you’ll find some ideas we recommend, but remember that almost any idea will work if you go in with dedication and enthusiasm. You extroverts are a little more equipped to fire up a low-energy team according to introversion researcher Susan Cain, but don’t sweat if you’re a quieter presence. Introverts outperform extroverts when leading intrinsically motivated teams, and if you can prepare an impactful case for why these activities will benefit your crew, you’ll have the foundations that motivation is built upon.
Now that we’ve shown you that your leadership style can inspire a team whatever your personality, let’s get to the sales training ideas your team will love.
Remember the Power of Working 1:1
So often when we think of sales training, we think of those 90s-style team sessions where sales professionals throw beachballs around and stick Post-Its on everything. We forget, though, the power of the 1:1 session. Much of your team, including new arrivals and those who have had far fewer experiences of being truly heard in the workplace, may need a one-on-one over a group activity.
This insight necessitates two approaches: first, this is a reminder that we should build in ongoing work to make our workspace inclusive and safe for all. Second, it means offering mentoring, reverse mentoring, and check-ins which link directly and indirectly to sales training. If sales are built on trust, that trust should extend to within the team, too, and connecting individually is one of the most underrated sales training ideas out there.
Have Fun With Objection Handling Training
This one can be hugely valuable – and hugely fun – if done right. Objections are a given in the world of business. We’re sure you’ve heard the stat about how many times a prospect says no to a sale before they give the “yes”; if not, for 92% of prospects it’s actually four times, and you’ll find plenty more juicy stats like this one in our key sales numbers post here.
Getting the “no,” the “that’s not right for our budget,” and the “I’m not sure,” is inevitable in sales, but agile salespeople know that’s not where the road ends.
All too often a “no” is really “I don’t understand what you’re selling”, or “I don’t trust you yet.” Objection handling is about hearing what’s really behind a lead’s objection and speaking to the emotion behind the hesitation.
How can objection handling be fun? After the obvious examples, move to the silliest things your team has heard, then ask them to invent some of their own. That means starting with, “I’m busy right now,” and working all the way up to, “Our boss is an alien, how do I tell him what you do?”
The point isn’t just to tackle objections but to get your team thinking creatively, and bonding with some examples that will have them cracking up.
Create a Safe Space So Your Team Can List Their “Potholes”
We love this idea from HubSpot. Oftentimes as leaders, we go into training with an idea of what we want to teach… but what about finding out what our team wants to learn? No one knows their struggles better than they do, so create a relaxed environment for them to share the hurdles they come across day-to-day.
These potholes can come from just about anything:
- an inbox they can’t get out of
- a client that demands way more of their time
- filling out processes again and again that aren’t necessary
Beyond that, though, individuals could struggle to feel energized in the morning, they could feel end-of-day pressure when they need to finish in time to collect their kids, or they might feel shy on the first call of the week.
Note that we said to create a “safe space”:
- We have to normalize humanity in business. Employees recovering from toxic work cultures may be hesitant to share what they’ve been pressured to see as “faults” or “flaws.”
- Environments of trust are where we all thrive most, so as leaders, it’s important to model the behavior we would like to see in our teams.
- That means the first person to talk about their potholes – and to create the relaxed feel needed for this sales training – should always be the most senior person in the room.
Sales training ideas can be impactful, inspiring, and enjoyable if leaders have the right energy to get the team curious, and open.
Objection handling should start with the obvious, but adding in unexpected and even silly examples will feed the team’s creativity and encourage them to bond.
Having the leader start when listing potholes creates a culture of trust vital for a thriving team, and can highlight where your team is truly struggling (and how to change that).
1:1 sessions build trust, confidence, and offer a private space for employees who are less likely to open up in a team training setting.