Make your next training event more engaging, fun and productive
This book provides practical activities for improving the selling effectiveness of training participants. The activities are linked to specific knowledge and skill areas that are outlined in Chapter 2. At the end of Chapter 2, you will find a quick reference guide to key activities that links each activity with one or more of the knowledge or skill areas. By using this key, you can quickly identify those activities that will best meet your people’s needs. When you take on the role of trainer, you must adapt training principles to the needs of adult learners. The seven principles below will enable you to help adults learn:
1. Relate the learning to the participant’s goals.
2. Focus on “real world” problems and issues, not on the theory.
3. Demonstrate how the learning can be immediately applied.
4. Relate activities to the participant’s past experiences.
5. Encourage debate and the exploration of ideas.
6. Use participants as resources to you and each other.
7. Treat participants like adults.
Trainers must realize that it is not what they teach that counts, but what the participants learn. Therefore, as a trainer, your job is to manage or direct the learning process. This requires a good understanding of the learning process.
Learning often appears to be a complicated and confusing process. But there are really only four basic steps involved. These steps occur each and every time a person learns. Understanding these four steps will help you facilitate the learning that takes place in the classroom.
Step 1: Experience– A person is involved in an event or activity.
Step 2: Reflection – After the experience, the person sits back and gathers information about what happened.
Step 3: Conceptualize – The gathered information allows a person to build concepts or test assumptions about the way things are or should be.
Step 4: Decisions – The developed concepts lead the person to make decisions or set goals on how to behave in the future. These decisions create a new experience which starts the process over again.
To understand this process further, let’s examine a process all salespeople have been through: learning about a new customer. A typical sequence of events would be the following:
1. The salesperson is assigned a new account. (Experience)
2. Before calling on the account, the salesperson reviews the files for available information on the account. (Reflection)
3. Based on the available information, the salesperson makes some assumptions about the account. (Conceptualize)
4. Using the assumptions as a guide, the salesperson sets his/her call objectives and plans the sales call. (Decision)
5. The salesperson makes the first sales call on the new account. (Experience)
6. After the call, the salesperson evaluates the results against his/her objectives and assesses the new information obtained on the call. (Reflection)
7. Using the information gained on the call, the salesperson adjusts or makes new assumptions about the account. (Conceptualize)
8. The salesperson makes new decisions about how to approach the account on the next call. (Decision)
Introduction to the Activities
As the example mentioned shows, learning does not occur at anyone point; it is a
continuous process. This process is called experiential learning. Learning through experience is
powerful because it requires people to invest themselves intellectually and emotionally. As Confucius said, “1hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand.”
This book contains fifty activities designed to create learning experiences. These experiences should help participants gain insight, develop skills, and improve their understanding of themselves, their products and services, their customers, and their jobs.
The activities use a variety of training techniques, including role–plays, feedback instruments, group activities, individual activities, assessment exercises, and simulations. All employ the “learning by doing” approach to ensure that the activities are relevant and that participants are involved. Since the emphasis is on learning from direct experience, there is very little lecture and theoretical discussions.
Although many of the activities can be used alone, most would benefit from being incorporated into larger training events, such as:
• Sales Meetings
• Skill Building Workshops
• Formal Training Classes
• Product Training
• New Product Introductions
Delivering successful training events requires careful planning and preparation.
50 Activities for Sales Training Table of Contents
PART I: Introduction to the Activities
Chapter 1: Using the Book 1
Chapter 2: Developing Successful Salespeople 7
PART II: The Activities
1. The Listening Test
2. Give It To Me…I Want It!
3. How Good An Inspector Are You?
4. The Nickel Auction
5. What Does It Take To Be A World-Class Salesperson?
6. Spot The Misspelled Words
7. Punctuation Exercise
8. The Great American Shootout
9. Territory Management Style
10. Behavioral Styles
11. Behavioral Styles Game
12. Adapting Your Behavioral Style
13. Breaking The Code
14. The Sales Presentation Role-Play
15. Selling Skills Inventory
16. Neutralizing Objections
17. Peer Group Review
18. Dressing For Success
19. The Teaching Game
20. Bridge-Building Game
21. Team Assessment Exercise
22. What Am I?
23. Developing A Company Slogan
24. Selling Against The Competition
25. Key Account Profile
26. Getting The Appointment Role-Play
27. Sequencing Exercise
28. Emerging Trends
29. Time Analysis Worksheet
30. Eliminating Time-Wasters
31. Time Management Practices Effectiveness
32. Active Listening
33. The Customer’s Complaint
34. Sales Practices Assessment
35. Can You Follow Directions?
36. On-The-Job “Active Listening” Exercise
37. Features, Advantages, Benefits, Proof
38. Telephone Effectiveness Assessment
39. The Approach Piece
40. Identifying Needs Role-Play
41. Product Knowledge Jeopardy
42. Your Retirement Party
43. Call Objectives Quiz
44. Wordiness Exercise
45. Negotiation Exercise
46. Creative Problem Solving
48. Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow
49. Your One-Minute Commercial
50. On-The-Job Application Planning
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