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Chapter - 10 Sales Training

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Learning Objectives

Understand the meaning, objective, and importance of sales training programmes Understand the benefits of sales training Explain the steps and ways to design a training programme Appreciate the importance of place, duration, and budget on training Identify the various training methods suitable for sales force training Appreciate the effectiveness of the sales training programme
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Training

Training is an activity to derive the best possible efforts from an employee that contributes successfully to the performance of a job in an organization. Rao (2009) termed training as the act of increasing the knowledge and skill of an employee for doing a particular job.
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Sales Training

Havaldar and Cavale (2008) iterated sales force training as an effort that an employer makes to provide salespeople with job related knowledge , skills, attitudes, and culture that should result in improved performance on sales, productivity and profits.

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Objectives of Sales Training


Supplement knowledge, skills, attitudes and culture. Arouse deep interest in job. Instill a sense of job involvement. Awaken a feeling of job security. Develop a positive attitude towards the job. Reduce the turnover of salespeople.

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Objectives of Sales Training


Fulfill manpower requirements. Prevent obsolescence of skills and knowledge. Bestow a participative work culture. Reduce level of supervision. Reduce cost of sales operations. Help employee gain self confidence and morale.

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Objectives of Sales Training


Help salespeople understand characteristics of business environment. Teach salespeople ways of developing long term relationships. Teach salespeople strategic component of personal selling. Learn how to increase sales volume, productivity and margins.

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Objectives of Sales Training


Teach habits required to be successful. Reduce chances of detraining.

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Benefits of Sales Training


Hones right knowledge, skills and attitude. Develops the functions and activities in the selling jobs. Develops objectivity in thinking process. Tutors salespersons to balance time, effort and money. Educates salespeople about product features, benefits and usages. Oxford University Press 2011

Benefits of Sales Training


Teaches salespeople the language of competition. Inducts a sense of competitiveness, spirit and vigour. Motivates salespeople to work hard and become self starters. Inculcates flair of managerial task and responsibility.

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Steps in Sales Training

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Identifying Training Needs


Determine weaknesses that affect performance negatively. Design content of training accordingly. Training needs vary from time to time.

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Setting Sales Training Objectives

Training objectives are formulated on the basis of


Types of products/services sold. Nature of selling jobs. Types of salespeople undergoing training. Types of customers. Environmental conditions.

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Setting Sales Training Objectives

Training objectives should be


Goal-directed Performance-oriented

Help to produce right type of salespeople for the right performance.

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Designing the Training Programme

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Structure of a Training Programme

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Contents of a Training Programme


Product knowledge. Company knowledge. Knowledge on customers. Knowledge on competition. Sales Techniques. Industry orientation. Management principles.

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Training Programme-Time and Place Perspectives

Length of training programme depends on


Types of Salespersons recruited
Budding or moderately experienced

Cost factor. Urgency of selling situation. Availability of professional trainers.

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Training Programme-Time and Place Perspectives

Location of training programme depends on:


Availability of right infrastructure. Financial supports. Cost of training programmes. Efficient trainers.

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Venue of Training Programmes


Centralized training programme. Decentralized training programme. Combination of centralized and decentralized training programme.

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Training Methods
Lecture method. Conference training. Case study. On-the-Job Training. Audio-visual Oriented Training. Management Games. Role Playing.

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Evaluation of Training Programme

Kirkpatrick (1994) put forth four training effectiveness measures:


Reaction. Learning. Behaviour. Results.

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