Salesforce Training Alone is Not Enough

Salesforce is a tool.  A very useful and effective tool at that, but still, it is just an instrument. For Salesforce training to be truly effective, it must be designed in conjunction with an overall sales management process. So what does that mean exactly?

Let’s take an analogy. We all know what a hammer does. It’s a pretty basic tool, one that we’re all familiar with.  And for a carpenter, an essential component of his or her tool belt. But, just because someone was trained on the effective use of a hammer that would not mean that they would then automatically know how to build a deck for instance. No, in order to build a proper deck they would need an understanding of basic deck structure, how to put all of the boards together in a formal step-by step process, as well as being familiar with other tools required for the job, for instance a compound saw, a box of nails, a drill, bits and appropriate sized bolts, a tape measure and a carpenter’s square. So, as you can see, while a hammer is a critical tool in the overall construction of a deck, on its own it is not nearly good enough.

Sales Team Structure

Let’s broaden the analogy to see how the different elements of deck building can be applied to how a sales team operates. The understanding of basic deck structure would be akin to understanding the basics of how a properly organized sales and marketing department should work, and how sales management, inside sales reps, field reps, major account reps, and customer service reps should be positioned.

Sales Process

The formal step-by-step process of building a deck is akin to the step-by-step process of your sales process – attracting new prospects with a defined marketing message and then maximizing deal flow through a sales pipeline and ensure each and every interaction with prospects and clients is designed to add value and bring them closer to a completed sale. The steps will entail an initial approach and attempt to generate a discovery call (by phone or in person depending on how your company sells), a meeting with the prospect to uncover their needs, eventually a presentation and a proposal, and perhaps after overcoming the prospect’s objections, a formalized close.

Salesforce Training Tools

The tools that a carpenter would use – a hammer, compound saw, drill, etc. would be analogous to the sales tools that a properly trained and equipped sales person would use every day. The hammer, as we decided, is our Salesforce.com tool.  But just like the carpenter, the sales rep needs more than that.  The well prepared sales person uses a combination of tools to maximize sales effectiveness. They would ideally be equipped and prepared to use their UVP (Unique Value Proposition), PAINDOC (a meeting structure and planning tool), COWMAN (a prospect/client discovery tool to uncover needs), IMRSN (a tool to help sales reps with more effective listening) and PEPC (an Objection Handling process to counter the most commonly encountered objections and put-offs).

At SalesForce Training, we work with sales teams to ensure that they have all the tools they need for the job, not just Salesforce.com. A robust Salesforce training program incorporates all of the elements of successful selling. Our aim is to ensure that your sales team knows how to build a great looking deck, not just swing a mean hammer.

SalesForce Training & Consulting is a professional coaching and training firm that specializes in helping companies navigate their way in a Salesforce.com environment. SalesForce Training is based in Toronto, with trainers in Boston and Chicago, providing sales coaching, sales management consulting, Salesforce.com training and Salesforce.com Admin support, sales training and sales personnel assessments.

by   Mark Christie