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How Effective Sales Training Can Transform Your Business

How Effective Sales Training Can Transform Your Business

“How Effective Sales Training Can Transform Your Business”

You can only pick two from these three: ‘Quality, Price, Time.’ Which do you pick? This line is often used in business and project management to highlight a common trade-off between these three factors. I’m not sure of the origin or who coined the phrase but it has become a popular way of framing limitations of resource allocation.

It’s far from an economic theory but it’s enough to stimulate thinking about what is important.

Running a small business in any business sector is challenging – for the successful ones that make it all look so easy and for the ones who try hard but never seem to make the break through.

Competing priorities make the allocation of resources a constant challenge.

Consider those things that happen which are totally unpredictable.

Like COVID 19.

Or a war.

Or those things that happen cyclically that we hope won’t happen but invariably do.

Like a recession.

What about those things that happen as unintended or unexpected consequences of any of the above.

Like the Great Resignation.

Think about the challenges created through the adaption of new technology.

Like ChatGPT.

In the realistic world of the small business, tackling all of these issues at once will be the biggest challenge and in the current climate, those priorities shift on a daily basis.

What factors determine how you tackle the list?

In economic times such as the present, many small businesses see greater benefit in reducing marketing budget and training budget, seeing both as an expense rather than an investment.

Surely the challenge for all businesses now is to reconfirm to the market what an appealing opportunity they are to prospective employees?

What is the cost to business of NOT marketing – both internally and externally?

What is the cost to business of NOT training staff?

Pick two of three:

  • Recruitment isn’t cheap and retention is more expensive.
  • How long does it take your business to fully onboard new staff, get them up to speed and integrated only for the process to begin again in a few months?
  • Should that even be on the list? Is that not a ticket to entry?

I would like to suggest that the biggest challenge to small businesses today is one that can be directly solved by the introduction of a training and development programme.

“It’s people, stupid.”

You get your people – and your culture – right and your business should be fit to tackle most everything else.

A consequence of less marketing and no training will be your inability to attract the right talent.

With so much competition for top talent, it can be difficult for SMEs to attract candidates with the right skills and experience. This requires developing a strong employer brand, leveraging social media and other marketing channels, and offering competitive compensation and benefits packages.

Being heard in a noisy environment isn’t easy for the biggest of companies.

Why should anyone join yours? Or turn up for an interview for that matter?

How can you keep your top performers if you are struggling to engage and motivate them?
They need to see genuine career growth and development opportunities and to be recognised and rewarding performance.

How can you deal with turnover? This can be particularly challenging for SMEs, as losing a key employee can have a significant impact on the organisation, staff morale, market strength.

You don’t want your best to leave nor your worst to stay – what does it say about the prevailing culture in your business?

Boomers or Gen-Zs? Or both together? In harnmony? Or not?

With multiple generations in the workforce, you need to be aware of the unique skills development needs and expectations of different age groups.

Which leads no nicely to addressing skills gaps. As technology and business needs evolve, it can be challenging to find employees with the right skills and expertise. SMEs should be proactive in identifying skills gaps and investing in training and development programs to help employees acquire new skills and stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technologies.

That’s plenty for a business owner, sales director or HR Director to think about and it’s possibly one challenge that will remain a constant for quite some time.

If we’re lucky some of the other challenges will move or get moved on painlessly.

Addressing the training and skills development issue will most likely free up some time to focus on something more proactive on your to-do list.

To find out how Shift Control can help with your sales training and skills development, email info@shift-control.co.uk


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