Training is a staple of the sports world. It’s how sportspeople and sports teams reach and stay on top of their sport.
How often do they talk about how well they trained leading up to a big match?
I remember when I decided to take up the sport of boxing.
Before I started, I don’t think anyone would have looked at me and seen a potential boxer. The first night of training left me stumbling home in a daze, soaked head to toe in sweat, and having emptied my stomach twice along the way.
But I stuck with it and three months of grueling training later I felt (and looked) like a totally new person and was ready for my first fight.
Even those blessed with talent need to train to reach the pinnacle of their sport. Michael Jordan, arguably the greatest basketball player of all time was famed for practicing just as hard, if not harder than he played.
The same applies to business and sales. Whether you are a ‘natural’ salesperson or not, you need on-going training to become truly effective.
Here are three ways sales training can help you achieve sales success.
1. Training Improves Results
No matter how successful you currently are, training can help you become even more successful.
My training didn’t just consist of learning how to box and working on my skill and technique, it also helped me to overcome my doubts and fears. As you can imagine, stepping the ring with someone who wants to hurt you is an utterly terrifying prospect, particularly if they have a habit of winning their fights by KO in the first few rounds. It was my training that enabled me to back myself and get into the ring time and time again.
Most people are aware of the famous story of how Michael Jordan didn’t initially make his high school basketball team. What did he do? He trained as hard as he could, making the team the next year before moving on and becoming a success at every level of the game. His glittering career finishing with six NBA Championships, five MVP awards, two Olympic Gold Medals and countless records to his name.
Whether you need to overcome your fear of sales (extremely common) or want to become a top salesperson, earning the big bucks and winning the top sales awards, the only way to do it is through training.
Sales training enables you to work on everything you need to get better, whether it’s your technique, your mindset, or something else, so you can improve your results.
2. Training Embeds Your Sales Process
In an earlier post, we talked about the importance of having a sales process.
To be really effective, your sales process needs to be second nature and the only way to embed this into your sales routine is through training.
When a prospect asks a question, the answer needs to be ready on the tip of your tongue. When the service or product has been delivered and the customer gives you great feedback, you must be ready to ask for a referral.
A lot of this happens in the heat of the moment, you don’t have time to check through a document to see how you should answer or what the next step in the sales process should be.
It was the same for boxing. I trained almost every day so when I was faced with a situation in the ring, I knew how to react. I didn’t have time to think about it or I’d be sprawled on the canvas, down for the count.
3. Training Keeps You Ahead of the Game
Just because you’ve been through sales training before or have been successfully selling for decades, doesn’t mean you can stop working on your craft.
Your industry, customers, and the market may be changing. Technology has revolutionized most industries and consumers are very different now to what they were 10, 20, or 30 years ago. They have different attitudes and beliefs, not just towards the products and services you’re selling but also towards salespeople and how they would like to be ‘sold to’.
Therefore, if you don’t keep up with the latest innovations, techniques, and technology you’ll be left behind.
One of the best ways to do this is through regular sales training for you and your team. You need to be continually learning and upskilling to stay ahead of the game. After all, you’re competing with other companies and other salespeople for the same pool of potential customers. Anything that gives you an (ethical) edge is going to help you and your company be more successful.
When Michael Jordan first came into the NBA he dominated opponents with his incredible athleticism and gravity-defying feats. As he aged he had to adapt his game in order to compete with players 10 or 15 years his junior, becoming a dead-eye mid-range shooter which enabled him to still break scoring records well into his late 30’s (that’s old for a basketball player!).
In summary, no matter how good or otherwise you are at sales, you can always benefit from sales training.
Sales training is how you improve results, embed your sales process and stay ahead of your competition.
Sales Coach – Attain NZ