So you just hired a few new sales development reps, you feel confident about them, and you want to get them prospecting as soon as possible. How do you train them? Even better, how do you train them effectively? Obviously, from a retention standpoint, the goal is to further cultivate your reps professional development to launch their sales career. The last thing you want to have to do is fire them after a few weeks or months on the job due to poor quality or lack of training.
Here are a few tips on how to train your sales reps right the first time in order to provide them with the best shot at success:
1. Implement a mentor program.
Starting a new job is filled with nervousness, excitement, and anxiety. When it comes to the first few months, your new hires will have a lot of questions about every facet of the business. It’s best to assign an experienced sales rep to mentor them. As a new hire, it’s nice to have a go-to-person for questions they may feel uncomfortable asking superiors, understanding the company, learning sales strategies and getting to know their co-workers. Schedule weekly meetings between the new hire and mentor to check in and see how things are going. You would be surprised as to how helpful this is to new sales development reps as well as to their managers who may only have access to surface-level performance metrics.
2. Provide hands-on training through mock dials.
One of the best ways to learn something is to just do it. Everyone is nervous on their first day of making sales calls. Learning the conversation, the product, and understanding the customer can be a lot to juggle at the beginning. An easy method to provide additional help and to build experience is to set up mock dialing within the company. Have seasoned SDRs role play as prospective customers and instruct the new hire to call each of them as if they were real prospects. Each internal prospect should assume a different personality within those mock dials so that the new SDR can get a taste for the range of personalities they will face in cold-calling scenarios. Make sure your seasoned sales reps stick to their made-up character and make the exercise as close to a real call as they can.
3. Clarify SDR responsibilities.
Training should help the new sales reps understand their day-to-day responsibilities. They need to understand what advancement looks like within the company so that in turn, they understand the process in place to achieve success. If you have particular metrics that each SDR is measured on, make sure that you and your new hires are on the same page for what is expected of them. Don’t forget to make sure they do not have questions before moving on to the next topic as this is a critical element to what they will strive for from here on out.
4. Check in and evaluate.
The key to success throughout training is to make sure that your new sales reps are on the same page with everyone. Make sure to check in with them for the first few months to see how everything is going. It is always good to seek out their feedback on the training as well. There is no one better to ask than those who just went through the program. Many companies will tweak and improve their training programs based upon feedback from the employees that recently went through it. A company that invests a lot of time and resources into their training efforts will find themselves in a position of stability moving forward. Everyone wants a return on investment, including the people you hire!
Hiring new employees to join your company culture and endeavors can be a scary task. Training is the foundation to maximizing the potential of each new hire and ensuring that each new member to join your team is a star.