Aug 15, 2017
Just the mention of the phrase “sales training” usually elicits a groan from sales reps and managers alike. That’s because it’s traditionally been expensive, time-consuming and may offer little visible benefit. While technology has automated and improved almost every business area, from Finance to Marketing, sales training seems to have been left behind.
While good old learning management systems (LMS) have had an important role to play, in a dynamic and agile world they now seem a bit outdated. Content creation and delivery are still important, but the emphasis is now on how we deliver content and the outcomes they produce.
For forward-looking sales enablement leaders, the traditional LMS just doesn’t help them make the impact on the sales organization that they need. And without the desired impact or outcome, they’re left struggling to elevate the role of sales enablement within their business.
That’s why many are now turning to sales readiness technology. Sales readiness shifts the focus of sales training away from imparting knowledge to delivering real outcomes.
While traditional LMS enabled sales training, sales readiness technology enables sales effectiveness. Sales readiness platforms also enable sales training, but they also actually help your sales reps become better at selling by focusing in on improving their skills and execution.
Sales readiness is an outcome-oriented approach that identifies the capabilities your reps need to win more deals and enables them to develop these. It provides tools that enable your reps with the right knowledge and helps them develop their selling skills so they can use that knowledge in real life scenarios. It also helps sales managers and subject matter experts build a regular cadence to coach sales reps, and gives them the analytics they need to monitor how their reps are improving.
LMS only focuses in on one aspect: providing knowledge through training. An LMS focuses on learning management, while the objective of sales readiness solutions is to achieve learning outcomes. They do this by honing in knowledge, skill development, execution discipline, and analytics.
Sales readiness solutions are a natural evolution from LMS. In an agile world, outcomes become even more critical, and sales are all about outcomes. So anything that can help your reps improve their sales performance is business critical.
Sales readiness tools help your reps improve their capabilities whenever they need to. It’s like when you’re preparing for a marathon. All those weeks and months in the gym help flex your muscles and prepare them. But your barbells aren’t going to help you on the day of the big race. That’s when you need all the little things that make you agiler and keep you performing at your best – great shoes, plenty of fluids and little bursts of energy.
While LMS have traditionally helped do the hard yards in the gym they don’t have the same agility and just-in-time capabilities that sales readiness solutions have. In this day and age, having the right information and tools just when you need it can make all the difference between closing a deal or losing to a better-equipped competitor. Which outcome would you prefer your reps achieve?