3 tips for training new sales agents

Sales on-boarding is an essential aspect of continued success. Representatives should learn how to use their employer’s best practices in all of their client meetings. When trainers do not provide adequate instruction, agents struggle to move merchandise or services and may never meet their quotas. 

Acting as an educator is an important part of sales performance management (SPM) positions. Supervisors and high-ranking salespeople should be prepared to teach new hires both the basic and complex steps involved with working in a forward-facing enterprise. The most effective on-boarding programs focus on teamwork, product training and real-world experience.

Mentorship
Inc. Magazine writes that the first three months are the most critical for a new hire. In the early stages, representatives grow discouraged when they cannot handle basic tasks. Mounting frustration can quickly lead to diminishing performance. In extreme cases, some agents quit because they believe they will never overcome the stress associated with their new jobs. 

Veteran staff members should be paired with the new representatives during the on-boarding process. Managers should instruct their top performers to hold regular meetings to answer questions from new recruits. This collaborative strategy allows managers to focus on the entire department instead of regularly tending to frustrated rookies. 

Inside knowledge
The most effective sales agents know exactly how their company’s products or services work. Representatives should know the ins and out of every bit of merchandise so every question from clients can be answered in seconds. Being able to explain every last detail to consumers helps salespeople succeed in the long run. 

The Houston Chronicle recommends allowing new employees to review the available goods or services. During training, recruits should use the products exactly how customers might. Hands-on experience is a valuable asset and eliminates a great deal of time during on-boarding procedures. Trainers will not have to stop and answer basic questions because the agents will know exactly how the merchandise works. 

Real-world experience
Eventually every representative finishes training and it will be time to work with live clients. Before representatives are allowed to hold their first meetings or cold call leads, they should be given ample time working in the field with their mentors. 

Trainers should monitor their students during easy conferences to see if the on-boarding was effective. Realty Times notes that some agents are great with theory, but struggle to apply the lessons to the real world. Mentors can offer additional training when new hires struggle with their initial client calls.