Continual personal and business development is good news for both individuals and the companies that employ them. Well trained staff are an asset, but only if they put this training into action when they are back at work. If you want to see your investment in sales management training pay dividends, then you need to lead from the front.
Leading from the front does not mean that you must undertake all the sales training that you send your employees on; however, you should at least know what the sale training UK wide consists of, how it is going to be achieved, and its purpose. It also doesn’t mean doing your employees jobs for them, or hovering over them monitoring their every movement, phone call and client interaction. It is about setting the right example and being a good role model. How do you achieve this? Firstly, it is about being honest about your strengths and weaknesses. Are you able to do what you are asking your staff to do? Could you achieve that when you were in their position? Or, alternatively, have you ever tried what you are asking of them? Knowing that the boss has weaknesses, difficulties or gaps in their knowledge will earn you more respect than you pretending you have all the answers. So, if it’s been a while, then attend that advanced sales skills course or seminar with your staff and understand first-hand the techniques that they are being taught.
When attending the sales management training with your staff, it is not enough to just be there. You are not there to monitor them, you are there to learn advanced selling skills. This means that you need to take part. Where the training is specifically designed for your business and your team, this involvement should start before the training even begins. You need to be open and honest with the training provider about what you and your team need. This may even begin another step back by asking the team themselves where they think improvements need to be made, where they could use support, and areas where they feel less than confident. From this information and the provider’s own observation or assessment, the course objectives can be set. At this point, leading from the front may become a little uncomfortable. It is possible that part of the problem with achieving high sales levels is actually you. While you may not need specific sales coaching, you may need to be willing to adjust elements of your approach to enable your team to reach their full potential. The decision you make at that point could make your break your team and the worthiness of the training. After all, how can you expect your team to take on new ways of selling, or new approaches to their roles in general if you are unwilling to make changes.
To get the most from your employees and from any sales management training that they engaging in, you must be willing to lead from the front. While this puts you in a vulnerable position in terms of exposing your own weaknesses it will strengthen your business and sales in the long term.