I recently guest blogged for The Pepperdine University School of Business and Management. The topic was on ‘Flipping Your Sales Training’ which looks at a technique for improving sales effectiveness which dispenses with the traditional sales training techniques.
In these sessions we perform live deal reviews with the students in the training room. We take it in turns as a class of up to six delegates to analyze a deal. Typically we can get through three to four deals in one day, but the more complex the deal the more time that’s required. In once instance two deals were covered in two days. The benefits are:
- The deal is improved by involving the expertise of multiple people, including internal and external perspectives.
- The delegates leave with actionable improvements that they can apply immediately. Some apply them same day, for example phoning a contact to find out critical information.
- Everyone remains highly engaged – do they in regular sales training??
- There is no theory at all, we dive straight into problem-solving
- Everyone leaves pretty much brain-dead as they have worked hard.
Some of these benefits you get in traditional sales training and some you don’t. My tips for anyone trying this are that you need to be prepared and you need to be agile. By agile I mean that you need to be able to adapt to the circumstances; not all deals are the same complexity and duration. You need to be prepared in terms of knowing the language that the delegates use, and having a knowledge of the market before the session starts. It’s not necessary to know the detail of the deals in advance, but you do need to know the market.
Conclusion: when there is no time or a reduced budget for sales training, flipping the classroom and just working on deals can be a great way to build new skills and get actionable and measurable results quickly.
Article by Alistair McQuade