Whether you’re taking up a new hobby or developing on-the-job skills in a sales role, it’s true what they say: Practice makes perfect. There’s only so much that a seller can digest through sales onboarding and training content — and in order for a rep to truly hone their skills, they must practice.
Role-play sales training exercises have long been recognized as a powerful training tool for good reason — because they work. They’re a proven way to boost a seller’s confidence in new material, familiarize themselves with messaging and learn how to handle objections in a risk-free environment.
The value of sales role-play
Sales role-play scenarios are an especially valuable coaching technique right now. As many sales forces have shifted to remote work environments, it’s imperative that sales training role-plays become a part of every seller’s routine. Because sales is such a people-oriented profession, many of the skills learned on the job are developed through shadowing, coaching and mentorship.
When reps are on their own, and less likely to develop these skills organically as they’re not working alongside their peers in an office, it’s important to foster this skill set through designated training sessions. After all, role-playing helps sellers practice and prepare for real-world buyer interactions so they know how to handle every selling situation thrown their way.
That being said, role-play is traditionally considered a team sport. So you may be wondering how it can be approached effectively while everyone is working remotely. The key is to use a “smart” role-play tool that comes with AI. A tool like this allows you to use AI to analyze a transcript of your reps’ video recordings or presentation voiceovers, giving you insights (with the help of keyword analysis) into the presenter’s articulation, product knowledge, enthusiasm, confidence and comprehensiveness of response.
Compared to a traditional role-play conducted in person, virtual role-plays give reps the opportunity to take multiple passes at a scenario at their own pace, while also equipping them with concrete feedback that they can put into practice immediately.
Top 8 sales role-play scenarios
If you’re a leader or manager looking for sales role-play ideas that will get your team thinking on their feet and mastering new scenarios, we’ve highlighted our eight tried-and-true favorites.
As you think about the different types of role-play scenarios to practice with your team, it’s a good idea to first identify the key areas where reps typically struggle or face challenges, and equip them with the tools they need to prepare for those scenarios in the field.
Below are the top role-play scenarios — along with some suggestions for how you can effectively execute them in a remote environment.
Role-plays coupled with expert coaching: a winning combination
When it comes to effective on-the-job learning, we know traditional training materials aren’t enough, but neither is sales coaching alone — no matter how good it is. To actually drive changes in seller behavior, reps must also have the opportunity to practice their skills in live situations.
By offering reps the opportunity to conduct virtual sales role-plays in a remote work environment, while also being able to provide accurate and timely feedback through some of the AI-powered tools on the market, you’ll be able to set your reps up for success whether they’re near or far.