How To Improve Sales Training And Motivation


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There’s no denying it: we’re living in a time of economic difficulty. While the situation has improved somewhat over recent years, there’s still a prevailing feeling (especially amongst consumers) that money is tight. As a by-product of this, sales staff can become demotivated by the increasing competition and the difficulty to maintain client relationships. But it doesn’t need to be this way – there are many ways to improve the outlook of sales people and keep them motivated. Let’s look at some of these now; you may just find something to add to your own sales training roadmap.

Weathering the storm

So what is the key to improving the attitudes of sales people during tough times? Well, at its heart is a fundamental change of approach, which actually turns full-face towards the financial and economical strife, rather than simply ignoring it. The way to equip salespeople with the right attitude relies on several pillars of change, including:

  • Adapting negotiation skills to reflect tougher economic climates
  • Planning for any and all roadblocks to a sale
  • Making the most of existing accounts

By keeping these three things in mind, salespeople will have the basic knowledge and skill to be able to tackle any sales negotiation.

Adapting sales management training

It’s not just the people on the ground who need to make changes, it’s something that permeates the entire company. As such, people in training positions must also make adaptations to the way they approach their training sessions. At the heart of this change is the understanding that these trainers must create conditions that will motivate team members to sell. To do this, leadership roles need to step up and deliver the right information at the right time. Here are just a few examples of changes that could be made:

  • Create incentive programs to motivate selling even in tough times.
  • Always be available as an advisor.
  • Keep a close eye on individual behaviour and progress, then help where necessary.

Some of these things may seem like common sense, but when the economy is healthy and business is booming, they can be forgotten. In order to improve sales performance and generate real motivation, active steps must be taken – and quickly.

The organizational approach

It’s important that, when times are tough, you never forget that conditions will improve – as they always do. This should be at the forefront of the company’s thinking in order to avoid making assumptions about a bleak future. There are key areas that should be focused on during such times in order to stay afloat, and they’re actually very similar to the focus of a start-up business. First, existing customer relationships should be given close attention. Keep existing customers happy and it’ll safeguard at least that income stream. Additionally, when existing clients have issues, they should be dealt with quickly and never argued with unless necessary.

The final piece of advice is this: always resist the temptation not to act. Yes, the economy will pick up at some point, but it’s impossible to know exactly when this will be. Instead of sitting back and crossing fingers, take action and organise yourself in such a way that the company, the sales team, and everyone else are positioned for long term success. In this way, the company will be well prepared in the eventuality that the economy turns sour once again.

Alison Brattle
Alison Brattle is Marketing Manager at AchieveGlobal, a global leadership development and sales training firm based in the UK. It specialises in providing exceptional sales management courses and helps organisations develop business strategies to achieve sales success. Alison enjoys sharing her insight and thoughts to provide better sales and team leadership training.


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