Show Your Sales Team Some Love This Valentine’s Day

sales team trainingThey generate your organization’s revenue, they’re the face of your company, and they work hard to grow your company. Clearly, being in sales isn’t a walk in the park.

The job is notoriously high-burnout; sales representatives face looming sales quotas, potential rejection, and the need to make commissions on sales. They must be pleasant and provide an excellent customer experience in the face of rude or demanding customers. They need to be able to get the answer to any question quickly, even if products keep changing.

It’s not surprising that turnover is high. Figures differ from source to source, but the general consensus is that turnover for sales representatives is around 33%, three times the turnover of all other jobs in the U.S. In fact, after the Great Resignation in 2021, turnover rates appear to be 58% higher than in 2020.

In fact, sellers seem to be having a particularly hard time now; a recent report by Gartner found that nearly 90% of sellers feel burned out.

So what can you do to help your poor beleaguered sales team? With next week being Valentine’s Day, why not show them some love?! They deserve it, and one way to do so is by offering sales training that will help them succeed.

Appreciate your reps for who they are

There’s a myth in sales that star sellers are just naturally good at making sales. That might be true for a rare few, but for the most part good salespeople aren’t born: they’re trained.

Rather than throwing your sales team into the fray without support, offer your reps training at every step of their career.

New hires should have a strong onboarding that grounds them in good sales practices, and the training should not stop there: ongoing support should be offered so that every rep is performing at their best, no matter what their challenges are.

Let them know you’ll grow together, no matter the future of sales

Selling has changed a lot in the last couple of years, leaving some sales reps feeling unmoored.

According to Salesforce, customers now expect salespeople to act as trusted advisors, offering personalized service during the sales cycle. This means salespeople must know their product and the customer’s business problems extremely well. If not, they can put off buyers. LinkedIn finds that 68% of customers are unlikely to work with a salesperson who contacts them with irrelevant information.

The pandemic also changed selling, accelerating the adoption of virtual sales. Unfortunately, some reps don’t feel prepared for this new reality. A recent survey found that salespeople feel adrift when it comes to virtual selling; 40% lack knowledge and 29% lack training when it comes to building trust with clients virtually.

Reach out to your sales reps with the support they need to be successful in this changed landscape. This may mean offering customer experience support, virtual selling training, or simply offering the assurance that no matter how sales changes, you’re invested in their success.

Be supportive of their goals

Your sales reps may not want to be salespeople forever. Some of them may want to move to management and others may want to move into more specialized roles, like presales or enablement. Take the time to find out what the ambitions of your sales team are, and then support them by offering them pathways, mentorships, or coaching that will help them achieve those dreams.

Offering coaching is likely to help your organization as well. CSO Insights found that in top-performing companies, sales managers spent a significant amount of time coaching their teams, and it pays off — coaching can deliver up to a 27.6 percent improvement in win rates.

Why training instead of chocolate and roses?

Learning is powerful, and your reps know it. Research shows that sales professionals who receive training regularly are more engaged at work. According to a recent report, organizations that offer their reps training — from onboarding to ongoing enrichment and coaching — experience 10% higher salesperson engagement than other companies.

Why? Training sets them up for success, and everyone wants to succeed at their job. Training helps your reps become better sellers, provide exceptional customer service, and even relax during their downtime. And unlike chocolate and roses, learning is a gift that keeps giving.