An assessment of sales performance and skills, strengths and weaknesses, and training needs should always be discussed promptly with the particular salesperson involved, and will generally be better received if it can commence with some favorable comment on strengths and good points in techniques and skills. The sales person should be clear that there is a difference between a training audit (and resultant corrective and performance-improving training) and a periodic formal appraisal.
The training audit is based on analysis adjudge at a specific point of time, and is aimed at improving skills and performance over the short term in particular, and the longer term if possible. A formal appraisal will measure performance against agreed standards and objectives and other relevant criteria, based on an overview of all the data and events occurring between appraisals.
The field sales manager’s priority is to improve performance by change-creating training in areas of skill and attitude, and it is unlikely to be productive to spend long periods of time lecturing the salesperson on minor matters (in terms of impact on sales results). Field training should normally only focus on from one to three priorities on any visit to reduce the risk of confusion.
Training is a major route to improving sales performance and maintaining high levels of motivation, and needs time.
Time is not the priority in training: the standards you achieve are.
A training framework
The training framework developed by the field sales managers should take account of:
No two salespersons are the same, and therefore they must be recognized and treated as individuals by the sales manager if he or she is to succeed in motivating and training each of them. Table highlights some pointers when training more experienced or less experienced salespersons.
Training must take account of:
At the end of this chapter is a useful summary checklist of guidelines for field training that will act as a practical framework for field sales management.
The intention of feedback is to improve or modify performance or behavior. Giving frank, honest and open feedback serves several useful purposes:
A checklist of guidelines for giving training feedback is included at the end of this chapter.
Sales Management Related Tutorials
|Marketing Management Tutorial|
Sales Management Tutorial
Roles And Functions In The Sales Force
Sales Structures And Organization
Motivational Management In The Sales Force
Sales Management By Objectives
Motivating Through Rewards And Incentives
Providing Appraisals And Feedback For Motivation, Training And Discipline
Communication In The Sales Force
Sales Meetings And Conferences
Recruitment And Selection In The Sales Force
Basic Sales Training
Field Sales Training
The Planning Process
Sales Force Administration
Sales Management Control
Merchandising At The Point Of Sale
Key Account Management
Alternative Sales Or Distribution Operations
Developing International Markets
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