How to hire a Sales Trainer for 2020 or your SKO

integrity written with chalk

After conducting sales training and Sales Kickoffs for inside sales teams, field sales teams, from SMB to Mid-Market to Enterprise. I think I’ve learned a few things about how buyers choose a sales trainer for their organization.

When it comes to choosing the right sales trainer, saas platform, tool for your sales stack or just about anything, it gets overwhelming very quickly.

We trained at places you know like Google, Zoom, PagerDuty, Visa and SalesLoft as well as some you may have never heard about. And the one thing we see consistently is the need for the sales trainer to help the buyer understand how to purchase sales training, not just purchase their own.

Ask any of our customers how much of this they went through with me, they will tell you all of it. Ask any customers who chose someone else how much of this they went through this with me, they will tell you all of it.

I know for a fact people have come to me, taken what I’ve taught them, and then purchased from someone else. And then, about 6 months later, a lot come back. They realize what I was suggesting all along was right, but they needed to find out for themselves.

Human nature suggests that buyers will commoditize everything to some degree. And this commoditization mindset is what hurts the buyer. So if you’re running an inside sales team or SDR team or even a Customer Success team, here are some tips to help you find the right trainer (or tool for your sales stack)

This is written specifically for hiring a sales trainer but you should be able to easily adjust for anything.

  1. Clearly define your needs based on desired outcomes.

    1. At the end of the training, we want the ____ team to be better at ____, ____, and
    2. We will define success as a change (increase or decrease) in the following ____, _____, and/or _____.
    3. True / False – We have baseline measurements for #2
    4. True False – If we don’t have baseline measurements, we will allow ____ amount of time to establish them before and after training.

    Tips for Question 1

    1. I would encourage you to ask a few senior execs to fill in the question.
    2. I would encourage you to ask a few reps to fill in the blanks.
    3. Also, ask this in a vacuum. Send as single emails and ask everyone NOT to compare notes.
    4. This will ensure alignment, create buy-in from all parties, and ultimately make you look like a genius.
  2. Reviewing Trainers/ Consultants

    Once you have answers from above, you will then be able to better interview sales trainers and make sure they can align with your specific needs

    1. Ask your Trainer if they are willing to speak with a few reps before signing the contract?
    2. It builds HUGE credibility for you and your organization that decisions are not made in a vacuum and dictated down
    3. It gives you the ability to look at someone in a small leadership capacity and see how they respond.
  3. Grumpy Gus

    1. Be sure you ask your trainer if how (not if), they handle the grumpy sales reps who sit in the back, thinking their shit don’t stink.
    2. Your trainer should have a very specific approach to working with the Grumpy Gus before, during, and after the training session.
    3. If they do not have a specific plan other than, “don’t worry, we’ve done this 1000x, then find another trainer. They will simply work to “ignore” the Grumpy Guss and let them suck the energy out of the room in about 3 seconds.
  4. Checking References – 2 best ways

    1. G2 – Much like software, they provide reliable reviews from the people you are considering
      1. And yes, make sure you ask about references as it relates to your sales process, transactional, deal size, LTV, etc.
    2. Willingness to recommend others. Suppose you speak to a trainer, and you fill they are not the right fit. Will they refer you to another trainer?

      At this point, they should understand what you are looking for, and if it’s not in their wheelhouse, they should be willing to admit and recommend others.

      Most of us do this anyway, but there are a few who don’t.

  5. Pre/Post Training Mechanisms

    1. Be sure to ask your trainer how they handle pre-training prep, materials like videos for managers to use before showing up so managers can be more prepared.
      1. Ask if it’s included in the price, it should be.
    2. Be sure to ask your trainer how they feel post-training coaching for the team as well as managers. If no resources exist, then again, I would suggest another trainer
      1. Ask if it’s included in the price, it should be.

So this article was writtent to help you find the right sales trainer for your sales team, the right speaker for your Sales Kickoff (SKO) or how to better select a tool for your sales stack or or marketing stack.

Still have questions, contact us here.

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