Sales training traditionally has been instructor led and to some extent computer based. The instructor could be an external consultant or the internal manager. While one cannot undermine the strengths of this method, training salespeople who are spread across wider geographical regions is definitely challenging. However, it is physically impossible for one instructor to cover all the locations. Either training programs are scheduled on a rotation basis or operations are shut down for 2-3 days a year and all the sales personnel congregate under one roof for the annual sales training program. Such programs are generally hectic and it is difficult to measure their effectiveness. Other options are to train the trainers and these individual trainers could then train their respective teams. This results in inconsistency of delivery of information and it is difficult to measure the effectiveness of the training program. Is there a better option to deliver sales training in today’s fast paced technological environment?
We in recent times have witnessed a phenomenal proliferation of technological solutions in almost all domains. Sales training is no exception. While it is still in the nascent stage, technology has begun impacting the training process even here. Online training and virtual training are no longer fiction but reality and have become an accepted option for many companies.
The most important benefit of adopting technology in deploying sales training is that sales professionals need not compromise their on-field time to attend training programs. They can minimize their time away from their core functional area i.e. contacting prospects. It would be most suitable for action-oriented sales people who may not enjoy being confined to a traditional classroom setting.
Secondly, knowledge can be provided when they need it most. Imagine a situation where a sales person needs to know updated information about a new product that has been recently introduced. Or if the sales person missed the product training session that has been recently concluded and needs to stay on par with his peers in terms of product knowledge. Information that helps them make more sales is always welcomed by sales people. More so, if it is made available to them when they need it most. If such information is stored in a central repository that is accessible to all sales forces, it would prove handy for a sales person on the move.
This can be achieved through ‘learning communities’ that can be built into the company intranet. Hosting the courses online through a Learning Management Systems (LMS) enables learners to take up the courses at their convenience. Not only that, it also helps managers to assess the performance of the learners instantly. It also helps keep a record of all the courses that learners have taken so far and their performance vis-a-vis expectations. Some companies have experimented by giving their sales team iPods through which trainers can distribute podcast courses and job aids directly. This could well be the norm in future.
Technological influence in sales training will be an ongoing phenomenon as newer technologies keep getting used; so it is important for training managers to keep track of technological solutions so that they can be adopted effectively in deploying sales training.
Subscribe to Our eLearning Design Blogs
Get CommLab's latest eLearning articles straight to your inbox. Enter your email address below:
Forget training and eLearning. Did you ever think what you really mean by a good design? Try to think about the term ‘good design’ comprehensively. For this, imagine and think about something that has been well-designed and approved by everyone. Else, hold this elegant design and consider the following things to define a ‘good design’.
Every Instructional designer needs to have good knowledge of standard instructional design models like ADDIE or Gagne’s nine events. These models facilitate the development of learner centric eLearning courses. But, it is not easy to remember all these concepts and apply them at the right instant of time to develop a successful eLearning course.
First impressions are usually the last impressions. This saying holds good for the description you give for your eLearning course. Typically, a course description is shown on the launch page of your eLearning course. The main aim of your course description is to provide your learners with an overview of the course; what it is all about, and what to expect from the eLearning course?
Welcome to today’s blog post. Every day, learning professionals try to find new ways to engage learners and make trainings more interesting to them. In this process, the current generation of learners stands as the most challenging target audiences. I’ve tried to understand the needs and tastes of these learners and had come out with an idea that can take our training programs a step closer to them. I had enquired quite a number of people about their likes and dislikes on current learning trends. Many of them expressed a common point that these courses lack personalization. I didn’t immediately understand what they meant. But, after going through some more details, here I am writing this post about how to add a personalization element to your course and make them believe that the course has been tailored specifically to suit their taste.
The multiple choice question (MCQ) is the most commonly used question type in eLearning. An instructional designer prefers MCQs over other question types as they can be scored rapidly and feedback can be given easily. It is an effective way to test a large number of learners, quickly and effectively.
Do you know on an average 3000 people get killed due to Fire accidents in the US every year? The NFPA estimates that 65,880 firefighter injuries have occurred in the line of duty in 2013, out of which 12,535 accidents took place at non-fire emergency incidents.
Here’s a scenario that is quite familiar to learners and designers alike; John, an employee in XYZ corporation, was asked to take an eLearning course as part of the company’s training requirements. John sat down enthusiastically in front of the computer and said to himself, “This must be fun.” He clicked the launch button of the course and started his training. Five minutes into the course, John went spiraling down into confusion with the amount of information that was being thrown on him and was frustrated and disappointed. John clicked the close button and went on to do his work.
Online learning is not the next big thing, it is the now big thing. – Donna J. Abernathy
The online training medium can be used very effectively to equip your people with the needed knowledge and skills. According to a report released by IBM, companies who utilize e-Learning tools and strategies have the potential to boost productivity by up to 50%. For every $1 that a company spends, it’s estimated that it can receive $30 worth of productivity.
Young employees are not ready for the demands of the workplace. As per a survey conducted by the British Chambers of Commerce, 90% of school leavers and over 50% of graduates are not ready with skills required for employment. (Source: BBC)
It is a common knowledge that well-designed assessments go a long way in engaging learners in the online learning environment. They are used to reinforce learning as well as evaluate the learner’s comprehension of a course.