Bite-Sized Learning: How Technology Has Transformed Enterprise Sales Training


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Finding the most timely and relevant sales assets and information can make all the difference when it comes to running a productive sales meeting. However, locating information in the maze that is most corporate Learning Management Systems (LMS) can be challenging — resulting in reps improvising in front of prospects.

While many organizations spend large sums on national sales meetings and other training events to prevent situations such as this from happening — all too often it’s to no avail. Considering how easily we’re able to access content in our personal lives, the technological downgrade we face in the corporate world is staggering.

Forget the name of that actor from Game of Thrones? Just Google it.

Need to assemble a complicated item or fix a leaky faucet before company shows up for the weekend? YouTube it.

But try to find a sales success story relevant to your upcoming deal, and chances are you’ll be looking for a while.

The tables are turning for sales training, however. Thanks to mobile, video and peer networking technologies, anyone with a PC, laptop or mobile device can get immediate access to millions of peer-to-peer and SME (Subject Matter Expert) video demonstrations and commentary to guide them through whatever task or roadblock they encounter.

A Paradigm Shift in Sales Training Techniques

By studying the way people engage with consumer technology, sales organizations are able to deliver more relent, continuous learning to reps both in the office and out in the field. This focus on user experience and ease of use is at the heart of modern learning, and it’s changing the way sales organization approach corporate training.

For a variety of reasons, however, many companies remain stuck in the “one-room schoolhouse era” of sales training. They stage costly events powered by old technology where live speakers, slide decks and three-ring binders stuffed with printouts are the norm. Much of the great information they’re putting out there will either fail to change behavior (if it even gets absorbed) or simply be forgotten by employees within a few weeks.

In fact, 96 percent of sales reps in a recent survey felt that sales training at their organizations needed improvement. In addition, 65 percent of sales reps said that learning directly from their peers — e.g., discussing sales techniques and strategies, watching peers demonstrate, etc. — was more valuable than their company’s formal training.

Use Mobile Video to Leverage Organizational Knowledge

Training salespeople with live presentations and three-ring binders in an era when most people access information with mobile devices is an anachronism. It’s inefficient and doesn’t make it easy enough for people to learn.

Modern learning, like any important innovation, doesn’t just do away with the past: It builds on it. Organizations can’t — and shouldn’t — abandon live training, as there’s too much value in face to face meetings and events. However, organizations should “load” people’s brains with key examples and stories using continuous and bite-sized content leading up the event. Reps will not only have a better chance at retaining this information, but in quality of the training interactions will increase as well.

Additionally, when you’re planning a training event, make sure that some — or all — of the live session gets captured on video. After the event, divide the recorded sessions up into bite-sized chunks so reps can access it all on the fly later if they need a refresher (or if they missed one).

Mobile video can also help streamline and shorten in-person training events, reducing lost selling time when reps are away from the field. This can be done by eliminating some presentations altogether by “bumping” some speakers from a sales meeting and having them recording 15-minute videos of their presentations on their smartphone or tablet instead. These videos can then be sent out to attendees a week before the event and — thanks to the analytics built into many modern learning platforms — you can confirm whether or not everyone watched the presentations before the meeting. After the event, the recorded presentations of top sellers recounting key messages and strategies can be used as follow-up materials, helping to reinforce knowledge presented at the meeting. Mobile devices and push notifications can be leveraged to ensure reps are revisiting this knowledge periodically and at the appropriate stage of the sales cycle.

With modern learning, the ability to locate and access relevant content is easier as well. Good modern learning solutions incorporate machine learning to gauge a learner’s topic mastery levels in order to serve up targeted learning content based on ongoing knowledge and skill gaps.

A version of this post was originally published on the Allego Blog. You can read the original post here.

Mark Magnacca
Mark Magnacca is the President and co-founder of Allego, and has spent the last 15 years helping sales leaders shorten the sales cycle and distribute their best ideas faster. Prior to co-founding Allego, Mark founded Insight Development Group, Inc., a leading Sales and Presentation training firm specializing in the Financial Services industry. As a former financial advisor, Mark brings a unique perspective to the world of consultative selling. Mark is a graduate of Babson College and resides in the Boston area.


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